Recapping _shift 2023: Empowering change-makers in construction

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If you have been a user of bimstore since 2011, you may remember bimshow Live. It was a time when the industry began embracing digitisation, and bimstore was at the forefront of that movement. However, we now face a new challenge, which is even more significant than our digital transformation. The climate emergency is upon us, and the construction industry has a critical role in addressing this global crisis.

On November 9th, Space Group hosted their annual _shift conference, which drew hundreds of in-person and online attendees. The conference brought together key players and industry leaders to discuss strategies for decarbonising the built environment and beyond. The event was a huge success, featuring exceptional speakers and panellists.

During the conference, Space Group, which consists of bimstore, BIM.Technologies, SPACE Architects, and Twinview, acted as the host. Rob Charlton, the CEO of Space Group, welcomed the attendees at the start of the day and underlined the conference's importance. He reminded everyone about the severe climate events that have occurred globally over the past year and emphasised the critical role we each must play in decarbonising the industry.

The keynote speaker, Jonathon Porritt CBE, delivered a captivating speech on the current state of the climate story, backed by science, policy, and technology. Jonathon's presentation was interactive, with a Q&A format. He encouraged audience members to think critically about the hard questions he raised while answering questions posed back to him. Jonathon's discussion was a true masterclass in how to forward the conversation.

The day was packed with insightful talks from industry experts and young founders of data-led companies. Eszter Gulacsy, the Technical Director of Mott MacDonald, shared her industry-focused expertise and technical excellence. Steve Malkin, Founder of PlanetMark, inspired the audience with his speech about creating moments that ignite passions and steer meaningful change in sustainability. Nicky Thompson and Joakim Eriksson, Client Directors from Mannaz, spoke about the psychology behind making change happen. Nicky then joined Steve and UMi CEO Nicki Clark OBE on a panel to discuss corporate responsibility and planet-friendly business. 

The afternoon session resumed after lunch with Gabe Davies, Patagonia's Ocean Marketing Manager, delivering an engaging keynote speech on the company's exceptional work as a leading force in climate action. Chris Smeaton from KEO followed on, explaining the role of digital twins in enhancing our understanding of data's significance in the carbon war. The final panel session featured young founders of data-led companies, Tom Bunn of re:new and Phanos Hadjikyriakou of 2050 Materials, accompanied by Catherine Sinclair, a KTP Associate and specialist Net Zero Architect of SPACE Architects. 

The day was full of insightful discussions, shedding light on how we, as an industry, can effectively tackle the pressing issue of the climate emergency. Towards the end of the event, during his wrap-up, Rob Charlton revisited a powerful quote from Gabe Davies' presentation, "If you want to go fast, go alone; but if you want to go far, go together". This quote resonated with the attendees, highlighting the critical role of collaboration and knowledge-sharing in achieving long-term solutions. 

Like bimshow live, the once bimstore conference, _shift finished with beers and discussions. For members of the bimstore team, it was wonderful to see representatives from some of our manufacturers, including Sunbelt UK and Blauberg UK, at the event and to catch up with colleagues from across the sector. 

Overall, the event was a significant step towards fostering a community committed to driving change in the construction industry. We hope everyone left inspired with renewed urgency and empowerment to lead the charge in their respective industries. 

Were you unable to attend _shift 2023? Don't worry, the conference was livestreamed, and you can watch the recording here.

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Held on November 9th, our _shift conference focused on discussing strategies for decarbonising the built environment and beyond. The conference had an impressive lineup of speakers and panelists, which included well-known environmentalist Jonathon Porritt CBE and Gabe Davies from Patagonia, among others. The conference provided a unique platform for key players and industry leaders from across the industry to come together, share their perspectives, and discuss important issues.

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