Marc Hoppermann of UNStudio in Amsterdam is looking to improve the way knowledge is shared within his company and with external organisations
In the fourth of our series of BAU – Insider Focus features Nick Myall, World Architecture News’ Editor, looks at knowledge sharing and digital architecture production
Speaking at BAU 2015 Marc Hoppermann of UNStudio, Amsterdam posed two questions.
Does increased knowledge and better tools and technology affect the final designs that architects create? He also asked, how should an architectural office share knowledge internally and work together with other companies?
He went on to explain how his firm splits the knowledge within the company into four platforms; parameters, organisation, materials and sustainability. Staff from each platform then use an intranet to share knowledge internally. As a result everyone within the company can write posts and update people about the projects they are currently working on. An internal dialogue is then created person to person, which is carried forward in internal workshops and meetings. People then know who to approach to gain key bits of knowledge and expertise in particular areas.
Marc Hoppermann goes on to say: “On the other hand, you also have to connect to the outside world. Bringing specialists from different fields into one room to discuss the problems they face is a great way to increase knowledge. We are constantly inviting others to collaborate with us through workshops and via our web site using our online collaboration platform.”
He goes on to explain that his firm worked with Sorba and Concrete Valley on a project that involved installing 2,000 different concrete roof panels on a bus station. All the panels would be different shapes and sizes. They took all the data required to produce the panels and imported it into computer models.
They decided what data they needed for the substructure and what information was necessary to create the moulds without creating large amounts of waste.
As a result a flexible steel sheet mould with 20 adjustable injection points was proposed. This was a very simple cost effective way of producing the mould and the panels. Initially they thought flexible moulds would never work but by collaborating with other companies they established a new process.
Hoppermann goes on to conclude that: “Collaboration is key, you need the knowledge of other firms and different disciplines. We need to implement new knowledge into our organisations and you can’t do that on your own.”
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