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Construction Journal

27 MAR 2020

Construction Journal: April-May 2020

Welcome to the April/May 2020 edition of Construction Journal. I’d like to start by sending my best wishes to all our readers – I hope you and your families are healthy and safe at this difficult time.

Steven Thompson’s article in this edition was written and edited before we truly understood the extent of the coronavirus pandemic. The article’s title ‘The only thing certain …’ refers to the changes we can expect for the construction industry, particularly in the UK, under this new governmental administration. Now, however, the title takes on an even wider meaning, both on a personal and professional level. You can keep up to date on RICS’ response to the pandemic by visiting

This edition of the journal centres around collaboration. Steven’s article analysing the future of the industry is followed by an outline of RICS’ Futures project – our response to the changing landscape of the profession. This edition also includes an overview of Value the Planet, RICS’ sustainability campaign designed to encourage all our professionals to implement the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in their work.

We take a step back and consider collaborative issues from a broader perspective as Gillian Charlesworth, formerly a member of RICS’ global executive team and now chief executive officer at BRE, encourages the industry to work collectively and with greater urgency on issues such as safety, diversity and tackling zero carbon in her leader article.

A significant issue in the construction industry today is, of course, finance. David Greenwood looks at some of the industry’s current payment practices – not all of them good – and suggests that digitisation of the industry is a good opportunity to integrate new payment processes and improve cashflow between parties. One way to achieve a more consistent payment system is to amalgamate your business with the supply chain and Chris Green examines the pros and cons of this business model in his article on vertical integration.

We also look at the benefits of integration between industry and academia. Danielle Lester discusses how academia and the industry must collaborate so that graduates are well prepared for the career ahead of them – by ensuring they’re job-ready when they enter the industry.

Elsewhere in the edition, Christopher Sly states that a top-down approach can engage teams in a digital transformation and Andrew Knight, international data standards director at RICS, offers guidance on how to protect your business from the ever-increasing risk of cyber crime.

Simon Nightingale provides an insight into the Nordic construction industry where quantity surveying has not been a traditionally recognised profession, although stakeholders are now starting to see the benefits of a more professional approach to coast management, and David Cohen explains why he feels construction efficiency in the hotel sector can only be achieved with an industry standard for costing hotel projects.

I hope you find this edition interesting, relevant and inspiring. Please do get in touch with any thoughts you have on the topics we’ve covered. 

I’ll end how I started, by wishing you all well and hope that next time I write an introduction to an edition of the journal we find ourselves in easier and healthier times. In the meantime, take care of yourselves.

Email Steph