coBuilder and CRB sign co-operative agreement

coBuilder and CRB

coBuilder and CRB have signed an agreement outlining future co-operation, which aims to positively affect the Swiss construction industry

The Swiss Research Centre for Rationalization in Building and Civil Engineering (CRB) and coBuilder will be working together to deliver a digital platform that will enable the entire Swiss construction industry to benefit from a common digital construction data context.

Establishing a digital data-based Swiss construction context

CRB plans to use coBuilder’s existing mechanism of structuring construction product data through Product Data Templates to provide a Swiss specific platform, which is intended to go beyond the existing development. coBuilder and CRB aim to set up a Swiss-specific process of creating Product Data Templates (PDTs) and establish it as the national Swiss standard. Construction products manufacturers will be able to access the Swiss PDT’s and create standard-based product data for distribution to the market through the goBIM platform. Working in co-operation with national and cross-country partners in the area of standardisation, the organisations will ensure that SBS Tool is developed according to not only best practice but also to the specific needs of the Swiss industry.

About Product Data Templates

The idea of a PDT is to provide all the construction industry’s actors with a standard-based and sustainable digital instrument to set and maintain design and specification data requirements and to check if the installed products meet those requirements throughout the whole life cycle of any built asset. Moreover, the PDT plays an essential role for the information exchange throughout all phases of construction, from the inception through to operation and further down to demolition.

Product Data Templates, which will be made available to Swiss actors via a state-of-the-art user interface, will enable all construction users to take advantage of the most advanced solutions for digitalisation of product data and collaboration within different proprietary modelling software.


Lars Chr. Fredenlund, CEO of coBuilder, said: “Better communication and collaboration are the two pivotal virtues in the world of digital construction. Based on our experience, we could even say that in the digital world better collaboration could be achieved through better communication. Hence, the language is considered being also a very important aspect of establishing a common construction context in Switzerland as a multilingual market.”

“In Switzerland CRB is the industry-recognised expert in providing and maintaining a multi-lingual construction-specific terminology database and standards for cost calculation or submissions. As coBuilder has also gained a reputation of an expert for providing multilingual construction data, the joint efforts of both organizations are considered a recipe for success in terms of making the Swiss construction data context and data structures available in German, French and Italian to start with”, added Michel Bohren, Director of CRB.

Further co-operation

The scope of the agreement includes the integration of the SBS Tool with standardised instruments for setting data requirements to benefit both clients and general contractors. This additional step will play a major part in moving the Swiss construction industry forward towards better data-oriented specification and tender submission processes.

Finally yet importantly, the plans of coBuilder and CRB go beyond building the digital data context in Switzerland. The organisations will be partnering up to introduce coBuilder’s tools on the Swiss market. The partnership will involve a well-defined knowledge transfer process going both ways.

Time line and publicity

CRB is planning to introduce a proof-of-concept based on a prototype model that will illustrate the workflow of data exchange via standard and context-specific data structures at Switzerland’s biggest building tradeshow: ‘Swissbau‘ in January 2018.

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