Announcing Daniel Davis – WeWork

As we put the finishing touches together for the BILT ANZ program, we are excited to announce Daniel Davis from WeWork will be joining us to present a new mini keynote session entitled “Building at Scale”. 

WeWork owns and operates over 100 co-working spaces in 14 countries (including having recently opened in Sydney). What makes WeWork really interesting though is that they design and build these spaces too. This gives WeWork unprecedented opportunity to research, understand and improve their workspaces both during design and operations. Daniel’s role as WeWork’s Director of Product Research is one that most organisations would not even yet conceive of – he leads a team of researchers investigating the relationship between people and space using a range of computational and machine learning methods. Their goal? To find links between the physical workplace and how it can be used to enhance happiness, productivity and community. Wow! Could this be the future of architecture?  That’s one of the key things Daniel will be talking about.

For me personally, to be able to announce Daniel’s presentation at BILT is very relevant and exciting. I’m an interior designer, primarily specialising in workplaces, so I’ve been following Daniel’s work for some time. Over the years I have been involved with BILT (since 2009) I have often been asked why an interior designer would be speaking, let alone even attending a conference full of software enthusiasts. Over the last few years, I’ve seen these two worlds coming much closer together.  Even so, when WeWork acquired CASE, I did wonder where they were going with that (and if I was the only person in the world who followed both WeWork and CASE).

These days, I get that question a lot less often – and when I do, it’s research like Daniel’s that answers the question. Technology is no longer an adjunct to architecture or interior design, to engineering or construction. It should be at the core of what we do.  In the near future, it could very well redefine our industry,  not only in how we deliver and build, but also in what and why we design. The research happening at WeWork is starting to show how this future could happen.

If you want to know more, check out either the WeWork Product blog (the piece on machine learning is awesome) or Daniel’s own blog.   In addition to all of the interesting stuff he is doing at WeWork, Daniel is also involved as a member of the design team completing Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia.

I’m just disappointed that we only booked Daniel in for one session! (although it is likely you will find him at a least one of our forums, too).

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