Publications / 2003 Proceedings of the 20th ISARC, Eindhoven, Holland

IFD Building Systems: a Model Simulating Advantages of Collaboration in the Case of Prefabrication in Concrete

Frank De Troyer
Pages 301-306 (2003 Proceedings of the 20th ISARC, Eindhoven, Holland, ISBN 978-90-6814-574-8, ISSN 2413-5844)

A characteristic of the building sector is that different actors (responsible for design, production, construction, use) are separated by markets. Those markets hide a lot of information. As an example the production costs of prefabricated concrete elements are considered. One market strategy of a production unit of those components can be to search for profitable contracts without providing information of the real cost structure. Another strategy can be to offer designer insight in how major design options affect cost and to come to a win-win situation: better quality for end users and higher profit margins for suppliers. A prerequisite for this is that within the production unit a clear insight in the costs exist. ABC (=Activity Based Costing) can be helpful. Even more problematic is the integration of “cost-in-use” in the design process. Again the prerequisite is that cost information is available within the organisation in charge of running the real estate. If so the next step is that this information is made available for designers in such a way that the effect of major design decisions upon costs-in-use are transparent. An abstract model reducing the problem to the essence will prove that, even if modern information technology may improve the communication between actors, real collaboration requires transparent markets that can lead, provided good arrangements, to win-win situation for all actors involved.

Keywords: Industrial, Flexible and Demountable (IFD), Building System, Activity Based Costing, Life cycle costing