Transforming construction

An overview of the government’s challenge to industry and research to transform construction to make buildings more affordable, efficient, safer and healthier.


Transforming construction

What is the transforming construction challenge?

The way we create buildings has not changed in 40 years, and as a result has not seen the same increases in productivity as other industries. This creates a challenge in meeting the UK’s national infrastructure programme for £650 billion worth of projects by 2025.

This challenge aims to transform the construction sector – enabling it to produce safe, healthy, efficient building using the latest digital manufacturing techniques.

It should support the industry to adopt these technologies and help buildings to be constructed 50% faster, 33% cheaper and with half the lifetime carbon emissions.

Government is looking to industry and researchers to innovate in construction, increase productivity across the UK and open up significant global markets for efficient buildings.

What’s the investment?

We will invest up to £170 million, matched by £250 million from industry, to create new construction processes and techniques, such as the development of standardised modular components from which buildings can be manufactured.

What are the opportunities?

Opportunities are being made available to UK-based researchers and businesses.

Key programme activities include:

Core innovation hub

Up to £72 million is being invested to establish a core innovation hub that will support collaboration in the construction sector.

It will address building performance and manufacturing issues by developing digitally-driven, standardised approaches that improve productivity and the whole-life performance of built assets.

Active building centre

A new active building centre is being created from a £36 million investment by government and industry.

The centre will look at energy generation, storage and release technologies and how these can support active buildings that effectively act as power stations.

The work that’s undertaken should break down some of the barriers and speed up adoption and commercialisation of techniques. 

Research and development

There will be numerous calls for research and development projects that encourage cross-sector collaboration.

They include grants to develop talented academic groups to undertake creative user research and development, as well as business-led projects that streamline processes, create cost efficiencies and improve productivity, quality and performance.

Construction network and community

As part of the challenge we are funding a network ‘plus’ for the construction sector.

This is being done to lay the foundations for a new community and to link investments made under the challenge across the broader research base, businesses and other stakeholders. Network members will be involved in events and small-scale funding calls.

Latest news

See the latest announcements from the challenge:

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