Wednesday 2 December 2020
 
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Mina Hasman

Big 5 digital expo to focus on construction sector's next normal

DUBAI, 15 days ago

As the world prepares for the next normal, so does construction sector. Today, the sector's big players are tasked with not only navigating through an ongoing crisis, but also to accelerate an impending disruption, which will be crucial for the recovery of an industry accounting for 13% of the world’s GDP.
 
From November 23 to 26, industry leaders from around the globe will meet online at The Big 5 Digital Festival to address digitisation, sustainable practices, and new business models among others, to drive impact, boost recovery efforts, and build the construction industry of the future.
 
World-famous organisations including Autodesk, Caparol Paints, Emirates Steel Industries, Etisalat Facilities Management, Ferroli SpA, Lenovo, Masdar City, Raknor LLC, RAKTherm, and UD Trucks are among the over 500 brands represented by exhibitors in the digital event. 
 
Showcasing their latest innovations, industry leaders will connect with old and new clients through an AI-powered matchmaking software with the objective of relaunching business and partnerships, said the event organiser, dmg events.  
 
Alongside thousands of products and solutions for the construction and infrastructure sectors, the four-day “Redefining Construction” programme will provide strategic insights, analysis, global case studies, and inspiration from over 120 world-renowned experts and decision-makers.
 
Including leaders such as Sami Ahmad Dhaen Al Qamzi, Director General, Department of Economic Development of the Government of Dubai, Gil Kelley, General Manager of Planning, Urban Design and Sustainability of the City of Vancouver, Marius Sylvestersen, Smart City Program Director of City of Copenhagen, Pratap Padode, Founder & Director of India’s Smart Cities Council, and Scott Henshaw, Buildings and Places Executive Director of the Red Sea Development Company, Saudi Arabia, the impactful programme is set to help shape the future of the construction industry post Covid-19.
 
Josine Heijmans, the VP at dmg events, said: "We are thrilled to bring such a strong line-up of speakers from around the globe for four days of discussions, networking, and unique learning opportunities."
 
"The construction industry has played a crucial role in the first Covid-19 crisis response, including building hospitals in record time, but it has also been strongly affected by operational restrictions, disrupted supply chains, and financial loss over the past months," observed Heijmans. 
 
"We are grateful to the many industry leaders, from both the public and the private spheres, who have positively responded to our call to convene at the end of this challenging year in order to find viable solutions to support the largest ecosystem in the world’s economy," he added.  
 
Speaker Mina Hasman RIBA, Lead Sustainability and Wellbeing Operations at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), said: "In the midst of the coronavirus global pandemic, as its consequences continue to unfold, we have a renewed understanding of the significant role the buildings play in promoting public health and wellbeing."
 
"Now more than ever, we have a profound opportunity to re-dedicate our focus in design, and harmonise health, energy efficiency, equity, and resilience to build healthier buildings and thriving communities into the future," she noted.
 
Yewande Akinola, Innovation Lead at Laing O’Rourke, who will also speak at the event, said: "We are living in unprecedented times, and this year has especially been very challenging for the construction industry. We have been trying to work out how to deliver our projects in a safe manner for the people who are working onsite and for everybody involved."
 
"Now, moving forward the question is, how can we transform the construction industry to leverage and harvest all the technologies available? I’m really looking forward to sharing ideas about this at The Big 5 Digital Festival," he added.
 
Built on the 40+ years’ heritage of The Big 5, the leading event for the global construction industry in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia, the Digital Festival offers four days of product showcasing, networking, and live premium content, said the organisers. 
 
The inspirational agenda will explore market outlook, project management, smart & digital, sustainability, architecture & design, and facilities management strategies through interactive panel discussions and keynote presentations, they added.-TradeArabia News Service 



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