The Confession Chair – Chapter Four – Death of Disciplinary Silos and the Birth of Integrated Industries


I know it has been a while since my last confession; the last month has been filled to the brim with travels across the globe; and right now, what is actually just five weeks ago is perceived as ages past. What happened five weeks ago you ask? We had the BILT Europe workshop in Ljubljana :-) Getting there was quick and easy – and a short drive from the airport took me into the historic Union Hotel (where I ‘accidentally’ crashed onto a movie-set – although they will probably cut me out in post-production).

It was my first time in the beautiful Slovenian capital, and I look very much forward to welcome all of you in October. The city felt extremely cozy and there is a plethora of restaurants and watering holes all along the river (and for you burger aficionados there is little joint, HoodBurger, around the corners that go straight to the top of my Global Burger Index with their ‘Le Brie’ – and they offer a healthy alternative to fizzy soda beverages; draft beer on tap ). Oh, and there is also a pretty cool Ramen spot by the river – that also acts as a Chocolatier (what a combo!)  – anyways, stay tuned for our ‘BILT’ers Guide to Ljubljana’ that we will publish in due time ;-)

Now, I’m sure you did not click in on this post to hear about Committee Eating Habits, but what we’ve been up to – and this is where it gets a bit tricky, so bear with me, as I’ve rewritten this post way too many times. The workshop is first and foremost a WORKshop. Aside from finalizing layouts with venues and coordinate with local suppliers, most of the time is spent in a conference room hashing out the programme. I wrote an extensive post about this last year; ‘The Petting Zoo Massacre’, and while I could repeat myself; I’d just encourage you to read that one if you want a deeper look into the process and the thoughts behind it.

Was this simply a repeat of last year and business as usual? Actually, no. This year felt much more intense. I am grateful to be working together with such extraordinary people as Silvia, Rui and Martin (who, due to other engagements had to join us via video-conference) – who don’t mind debating the program from early morning till past midnight for days on end. This year it did not feel like a massacre. The hundreds of abstracts you submitted is still a testament to Y’all being too damned talented – and we see an increasing variety of topics, reconfirming us in you supporting us in the establishment of BILT as something truly unique and all-encompassing. Yes, we still have streams dedicated to Revit and Dynamo, but you will find a huge increase in client-driven case studies and we can see that the OpenBIM approach is really kicking off across Europe.  The program itself will be released in details at the end of the month, so pardon me, that I cannot yet go into details, we are just waiting for the last tweaks.

As I wrote last year, and it truly happens in a mysterious subconscious manner, a theme begins to emerge as the program gets reshuffled over the course of the four days. Last year our theme was ‘Beyond Automation’ – and we see these notions have fostered new topics on how to harness technology to address industry issues in new and curious ways. BILT has always been about collaborating across disciplines and practices in order to achieve the nirvana of the digital transformation of the built environment; let us, therefore, tease the overall direction for BILT Europe 2018 as the Death of Disciplinary Silos and the Birth of Integrated Industries.

This is truly an exciting time for all of us – and knowing the passion that has gone into curating this years schedule – it will be just as inspiring as its destination.

Till next time (where we will announce of keynote speaker),


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