Centre for Digital Built Britain

The Centre for Digital Built Britain is a UK government-funded body, established in partnership with Cambridge University in 2017, to support the transformation of the UK construction sector using digital technologies to better plan, build, maintain and use infrastructure. It is a successor to the UK BIM Task Group (2011-2017).


In May 2011 UK Government Chief Construction Adviser Paul Morrell called for adoption of building information modelling on UK government construction projects.[1] The UK BIM Task Group was a UK Government-funded group, managed through the Cabinet Office, and created in 2011. Chaired by Mark Bew, it was founded to "drive adoption of BIM across government" in support of the Government Construction Strategy.[2] It led the government's BIM programme and requirements,[3] including a free-to-use set of UK standards and tools that defined 'level 2 BIM'.[4] The BIM Task Group later took responsibility for delivering the Digital Built Britain strategy,[5][6][7] published in February 2015.[8][9]

The work of the BIM Task Group now continues under the stewardship of the Cambridge-based Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB),[10] announced by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills in December 2017 and formally launched in early 2018. Its role is to support the transformation of the UK's construction sector using digital technologies to better plan, build, maintain and use infrastructure.[11]

Structure and work

The CDBB is led by Professor Andrew Neely, building on the work of the Cambridge Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction (CSIC), Cambridge Big Data, the Distributed Information and Automation Lab (DIAL), the Cambridge Service Alliance (CSA) and the Institute for Manufacturing. The CDBB is based in the CSIC's facility, the Maxwell Centre, in West Cambridge.[11]

The Digital Built Britain strategy expanded the remit beyond BIM to include other digital processes and technologies, including new contractual frameworks, open data standards, data analytics and big data.[8] For example, in November 2018, the CDBB published The Gemini Principles, a framework to guide the development of 'digital twin' thinking in the built environment (as recommended in the National Infrastructure Commission's December 2017 Data for the Public Good report).[12]


  1. "BIM Roundtable Discussion". Thenbs.com. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  2. Cabinet Office (2011) Government Construction Strategy. Accessed: 2 September 2014.
  3. "BIM Task Group - A UK Government Initiative". Bimtaskgroup.org. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  4. "The level-2 BIM package". BIM Task Group. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  5. Innovate UK, Launch of Digital Built Britain. Accessed 19 October 2016.
  6. BIMPlus, Digital Built Britain officially launched. Accessed 19 October 2016.
  7. Infrastructure Intelligence, Digital Built Britain launches next phase of construction's digitisation . Accessed 19 October 2016.
  8. "Digital Built Britain - Level 3 Building Information Modelling - Strategic Plan" (PDF). Gov.uk. HM Government. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  9. Knutt, Elaine (4 March 2015). "Paves way to 'Digital Built Britain'". BIM plus. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  10. "What Was the UK BIM Task Group?". BIM Level 2. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  11. Williamson, Jonny (1 December 2017). "£5.4m to launch 'Centre for Digital Built Britain'". The Manufacturer. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  12. Walker, Andy (7 December 2018). "Principles to guide development of national digital twin released". Infrastructure Intelligence. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
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