Construction 4.0 and built assets in-use: creating an e-topia or dystopia?

du Plessis, Chrisna and Sherratt, Fred (2020) Construction 4.0 and built assets in-use: creating an e-topia or dystopia? Proceedings of the ICE - Management, Procurement and Law, 173 (4). pp. 182-189. ISSN 1751-4312

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Construction 4.0 makes many promises. The use of technologies will not only improve productivity in the construction of future built environments but will also enhance their operation and maintenance as they become smart cities. These latter stages in the built asset project life cycle are impacted by Construction 4.0 technologies able to both automate and optimise their operations, thus bringing benefits for facility management while also linking the built environment fabric to wider societal and governmental systems. However, there is growing concern that Construction 4.0 is directing the industry towards a ‘smart dystopia’, a situation with as much vulnerability as resilience, without due consideration or challenge. For example, the automation of operational processes arguably increases vulnerabilities to cyberattacks, corruptions of data or energy loss, while the constant collection of worker and citizen data by smart buildings and infrastructures raises concerns around surveillance and privacy, as well as issues of exclusion. Although Construction 4.0 has the potential to enable the industry to support the delivery, operation and maintenance of an e-topia, such ethical and social challenges should perhaps be considered before its technologies are unquestioningly embedded within built assets for use throughout the duration of their life cycles.

Item Type: Journal Article
Faculty: Faculty of Science & Engineering
Depositing User: Lisa Blanshard
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2020 11:06
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2021 18:52

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