A Spanish-Norwegian Consortium supported by a large group of industry stakeholders will conduct a feasibility study on a EU database defined in the future Regulation for construction products. The objective is to define a system for a digital product passport considering the need of digital information from regulators, manufacturers and other actors in the construction value chain.
The consortium of Cobuilder, TECNALIA and UNE won a tender which should deliver a technical assessment for different solutions of an EU database or system for construction products to the European Commission. This system is envisioned in the revision to the Construction Products Regulation (CPR), currently under development.
The expected changes will have both a practical and legal impact for the construction industry, such as the possible implementation of Construction Digital Product Passports and detailed documentation of environmental data.
“The revised CPR aims to make the construction industry contribute to the digital and green transition and promote efficiency in the value chain,” says Aitor Aragón, responsible for Sustainable construction and BIM at the Spanish Association of Standardization (UNE), one of the consortium participants.
A first step will be to decide on the future data infrastructure to support the changes needed. This is where the set-up of an EU database for construction products becomes important for the EU market and the member states. The goal is to ensure that all stakeholders in the industry across different geographies share the data of construction products in a common standardised way.
“We need to understand and decide how product data should be structured, shared and managed on a cross-industry level. The reason why we haven’t succeeded with this earlier is the fragmented nature of the construction industry and its complexity. The push and sense of urgency now coming with the European Green Deal and the need for digitalisation, will definitively take us to the next level,” says Lars Chr. Fredenlund, CEO of Norwegian tech company Cobuilder.
Feasibility study for a digital product passport and registry for construction products
The main objective of the project is to do a feasibility study on five different options for setting up a database or system at EU level storing information regarding construction products. TECNALIA, a centre of Applied research and technological development in Spain, is the third partner in the consortium.
“The study will evaluate combinations of centralised and decentralised solutions, analysing pros and cons from the technological point of view, and from the perspective of different stakeholders such as the EU Commission, manufacturers, market surveillance authorities and information consumers,” says Amaia Castelruiz Aguirre, senior researcher at TECNALIA.
Industry partners on board
In addition to the contracted consortium participants, the bid is supported by a broad group of industry stakeholders across Europe, such as Construction Products Europe, FIEC, Construction SMEs Europe, GS1, BuildingSMART International, and more. Figuring out how a common EU database or system for construction products can be set up, how to exchange data via a digital declaration of performance (smart CE-marking), and how to use data dictionaries, represents an opportunity and an important step towards solving how ambitious legislation and regulative initiatives can be merged and implemented in practice. This will definitely move the industry as a whole towards the European Green Deal targets. The work on the study is already underway and a start-up meeting with the European Commission has been carried out 5 October.
For more information, please contact:
José Manuel Olaizola, TECNALIA E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Vanesa Guerrero Acosta, UNE E-mail: email@example.com
Espen Mathisen, Cobuilder E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
About the consortium participants:
UNE, the Spanish Association for Standardization, is a global organization whose purpose is to develop technical standards that contribute to the shared progress of society and the creation of a safer, more sustainable, and more competitive world. Standards reflect the market consensus on best practices in key aspects for the competitiveness of organizations and for society, and are the result of dialogue and collaboration between economic sectors and government agencies. With over 13,000 professionals in its working groups, UNE is Spain's representative in the international, European and American standardization bodies.
TECNALIA is the largest center of applied research and technological development in Spain, a benchmark in Europe and a member of the Basque Research and Technology Alliance. We collaborate with companies and institutions to improve their competitiveness, people’s quality of life and achieve sustainable growth. We do it thanks to people who are passionate about technology and committed to building a better society.
COBUILDER is a privately-owned international company located in Oslo with wholly-owned subsidiaries in England, France and Bulgaria. The company offers a software platform that employs all relevant international standards for data management to help the construction industry unlock the potential of product data. Fit-for-purpose and accurate product data improves quality and reduces time-use, cost and environmental footprint. Cobuilder is a major driver for the digitization in construction and is a strategic contributor to ISO, buildingSMART, CEN and CENELEC.