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The 'Built Environment' is made up of every building, roadway, waterway, utility network, park, and much more. It supports almost every activity of our society: living, working, learning, healthcare, transport, entertainment, leisure, and sports.  The Built Environment’s proper functioning is dependent on information. As our world becomes more digital, how we produce, manage and exchange “information” on a construction project - known as Building Information Modelling or BIM - is increasingly important.  

BIM is a process for creating and managing information on a construction project across the lifecycle of the project. An output of this process is the Building Information Model; the digital description of every aspect of the built asset from information assembled collaboratively and updated at key stages of a project. This model enables those who interact with the building to optimize their actions, resulting in a greater whole life value for the asset. 

Standards for BIM are critical to a “smart society”. The standards do not only streamline the methodologies to produce or manage this digital data, but also the structure of the data itself. Standards ensure interoperability between information systems, and prevent the expensive loss or corruption of data.   

The I.S. EN ISO 19650 series are the key BIM standards, having been adopted by ISO, CEN and nationally, as standards for managing information over the whole life cycle of a built asset using BIM. In 2021 we adopted a National Annex to Part 2 in that series; NA:2021 to I.S. EN ISO 19650-2:2018. This National Annex provides guidance on how to implement I.S. EN ISO 19650-2:2018 within the national context of construction projects. More specifically, it contains the Irish technical parameters on data components used in BIM, such as field identification and information containers.  

The entire I.S. EN ISO 19650 series, including the National Annex, can be purchased on our NSAI store through the following hyperlinks: 

  • I.S. EN ISO 19650-1:2018 Organization and digitization of information about buildings and civil engineering works, including building information modelling (BIM) - Information management using building information modelling - 1Part 1: Concepts and principles (ISO 19650-1:2018) 
  • I.S. EN ISO 19650-2:2018 Organization and digitization of information about buildings and civil engineering works, including building information modelling (BIM) - Information management using building information modelling - Part 2: Delivery phase of the assets (ISO 19650-2:2018) 
  • NA:2021 to I.S. EN ISO 19650-2:2018 Irish National Annex to I.S. EN ISO 19650 -2:2018, Organisation and digitization of information about buildings and civil engineering works, including building information modelling (BIM) - Information management using building information modelling - Part 2: Delivery phase of assets 
  • I.S. EN ISO 19650-3:2020 Organization and digitization of information about buildings and civil engineering works, including building information modelling (BIM) - Information management using building information modelling - Part 3: Operational phase of the assets (ISO 19650-3:2020) 
  • I.S. EN ISO 19650-5:2020 Organization and digitization of information about buildings and civil engineering works, including building information modelling (BIM) - Information management using building information modelling - Part 5: Security minded approach to information management (ISO 19650- 5:2020) 

The fourth part in the series, relating to information exchange, is still in development and will be available to purchase on the NSAI store in due course.  

NSAI’s Building Information Modelling Committee Chair, Ralph Montague said: 

“Demonstrating just how important BIM has become in the construction industry, the Government Construction Contracts Committee has a strategy for all public sector projects in the future to make use of the technology in line with best practice, as outlined in Irish Standards. As time goes on, we can only expect for this to become a more common request for construction projects up and down the country. BIM standards have a key role to play in supporting the Smart Built-Environment for Ireland.”