Intelligent Construction Contracts and the Digital Age – a New Module in Development for 2017

intelligent contract research logoA new module is in development for the Masters provision with the Department of Architecture and Built Environment. This will lead to a better understanding of benefits and challenges of intelligent contracts and will enable informed debate to take place in the policy arena and provide a basis for developing an appropriate approach regarding their potential widespread adoption. The new module will benefit from contributions from leading opinion formers from within the industry and society by contributing to better implementation of intelligent contracts. The module will also inform future professional competency requirements and help build the ‘digitised professional’.

An intelligent contract (IC) is a self-executing contract containing electronically drafted provisions which has the ability to automate a variety of processes in accordance with the terms of the contract. The attitude of important stakeholders and opinion formers towards these developments play a vital role in dictating the adoption of new technologies. The construction industry has moved into a period of accelerated technological change with a startling rate of progress. Advances such as Building Information Modelling (BIM), robotics and the Internet Of Things all indicate that the legal arrangements underpinning project delivery need updating. Many of the construction contracts in current use were written for the Victorian age and are in need of an overhaul. ICs appear to be the way forward but the wider issue is whether stakeholders are comfortable with their adoption in terms of the cost, reliability and the legal liabilities created. This new module will seek to define the issues arising from ICs and help educate the next generation of construction professionals.

The project leader, Dr. Jim Mason, is looking for sponsors and partners in the first instance to contribute in return for prominent acknowledgment of the input and co-authorship rights in relation to the research findings. Expressions of interest in joining the focus groups are also welcome. Enquiries should be made in the first instance to or by phoning 0790 1716679.