• Fusion. Construction disciplines are intersecting, merging, mashing, competing and complementing each other to create new and evolved design professions.
  • Magic. Richardson, Wright, Aalto, Sullivan, Saarinen would light up and would declare today’s software, processes, and architecture/engineering feats as “take your breath away magic”
  • Transparency. Clients are savvier than ever. Technology exposes and exploits opportunity and talent.
  • Client Proliferation. Within three years the U.S. construction marketplace will grow to be over $1 Trillion. Architects and design professionals must move their value and talent fast to capture the gold. Decision makers selecting firms will be generation X and Y sweeping older procurement systems out the door. Neo-QBS based on meritocracy will prevail.
  • Licensing Power.  While some licensing may be needless protectionist bureaucracy (and should be eliminated) the design profession laws should paradoxically get stronger. Dramatic climate change issues and new public health research shows the indispensability of architects, engineers, and interior designers who will need enhanced preparation to meet society’s challenges for safety.  Need a case study to be convinced? China.
  • Human Capital Shortages.  The thinning numbers of architects, engineers, and designers face an environment for enhanced construction quality that will simultaneously raise the bar.  This makes a compelling case for supply chain wisdom.  Still, top talent will be in short supply.  Productivity will hit new levels at $180,000 net revenues per FTE.
  • Green Advantage.  Buildings, green environments, green vehicles.  Heading toward zero carbon, affordable, safe, clean, attractive aesthetics.  All will be constructed and de-constructed and provide proof of recycled content.
  • Global Innovation.  Expect to see U.S. firms and their evidence based talent superiority export to new high levels while garnering top respect for innovation. U.S. market share grows by 4%.
  • Change Blindness.  We are shortsighted to the hidden forces acting behind the scenes in such areas as design-build, lean construction, and game changing delivery processes.
  • Competitiveness. Requires higher education curriculum and design professions to synergize.  Firms will be engaging with educators to ensure the hiring of appropriately trained and developed graduates for the future professions.
  • Robots.  Use of robots in construction will soar replacing human labor in dirty, dangerous and repetitive categories. There are currently 1.5 million industrial robots but this is starting point where the game begins. Seven year impact: Fifty percent of current construction labor threatened.
  • Big Data/Best Data. Today we too often miss the obvious. Tomorrow we escape the information overload. Capturing the value of big data will provide clarification on marketplace opportunities.
  • Science Leads Design. As the power of design gets proven again and again it also gets captured in the Petri dish. Algorithms, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, tools that think.
  • Plagiarism. Clients discover unattributed copying in design proposals and RFQ responses. Result isn’t pretty.
  • Measuring Everything. New metrics will be revealed and invented that will foster better decision making. Firms will improve their project profitability to sustainable levels. (6-17%)
  • Gamification. Many aspects of professional life will track and use game type situations. From design decision making to green living, expect new apps and internal business models driven by game tech.
  • 3D Printing. Not just better models but great product solutions, faster. The design agenda will be elevated. Product designers and architects invent new business models, profit centers, and a clever and affordable tool to deliver value.
  • Hyper-specialized. Construction professionals will increasingly be specialized causing knowledge gaps and communication challenges between specialties and sub-specialties. New value placed on orchestration.
  • Population Conundrum. With unemployment in parts of Middle-East and Asia now running over 30% (much of it teenage) we must discover meaningful roles and responsibilities for global citizens. In next 40 years we’ll surpass 9 billion people on spaceship Earth. New ideas will support puzzling our way through this. Design and construction industry leader could capture the Nobel Prize.
  • Density is Fashionable. Expect improved urban design solutions. Designing the spaces between buildings with green living and transportation with a mix of edutainment experiences. Suburbs go into decline as they are inefficient and lackluster to youthful generations.
  • Infrastructure.  The public-private-partnership revolution gets tested and will show the way for over $40 trillion in solutions over the next two generations.
  • Ecoflation. Resource scarcity will cause commodities to become more expensive. Conversely, energy hog buildings will deflate in value compared to their credentialed and efficient competitors.
  • Social Media Effect. Expect to see new collaborative networks that identify talent across boundaries. Professionals will partner to gain leverage. Collaboration is achieved in the cloud with new tools and the new tales of convincing value.
  • Generation Gaps. Seniors are postponing retirement making for more stressful leadership transitions in professional practices. Human capital is strained thanks to knowledge worker shortages.
  • Training to Win. Design firms executive education and in-house training programs will be increasingly important and advanced to well over 100 hours annually. Quality, brand building, and hyper connectivity will require firms to weave together education and project leadership to stay competitive.
  • Modular Muscle. We’re entering the pre-manufactured epoch with modular component solutions invented in numerous categories.  Faster, less waste, better designed, risk averse component parts will become new normal.
  • Co-Active Dimension.  Fast forward to 6D makes for new fees. 1D – Paper documents; 2D – CAD; 3D -BIM; 4D – Embedded scheduling; 5D – Materials Take-off; 6D – facility curatorial management. New dimensions of services will knock down walls and enable new collaborative possibilities