12pm - 1pm


1pm - 1:15pm


Tony Mancini, Group Director, SGC Horizon Building Group
David Barista, Editorial Director, BD+C


1:15pm - 1:30pm


The Rise of AEC Superusers: Design Technology Specialists and the Future of AEC

By Randy Deutsch AIA, LEED AP, Author, Architect, Clinical Associate Professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Design technology is changing architecture, engineering, and construction, as well as the role of design and construction professionals. With new technologies and work processes appearing nearly every week, how can practitioners be expected to stay on top and thrive? In a word, Superusers: those who provide 20% of the effort but achieve 80% of the results. This fast-paced talk will help you discover how they do it, identify who they are, the value they provide, and how you can attract and retain them—or become one yourself—what career opportunities they have, what obstacles they face, and how to lead them. This is the first-ever field overview that will help current and future design and construction professionals get from where they are today to where they need to be, to survive and thrive in the new world of design and construction, and succeed in the accelerating new world of work and technology.

1:32pm - 1:47pm


Get the Lead Out: A Roadmap For Creating an Agile, Tech-focused AEC Practice

By Nathan Miller, Founder, CEO, Proving Ground

Designers and builders today occupy two parallel yet increasingly intertwined realities: unprecedented rapid technological innovation and the construction industry's continued history of being risk-adverse and slow-to-adopt. In his work as a digital transformation consultant, Nathan Miller frequently observes designers that continue to rely on old production habits, professionals inhibited by deeply ingrained biases, and executives hesitant to make disruptive changes to their businesses. In this lecture, Miller will address the challenge helping design and construction businesses get the lead out—drop what is slowing them down—and move toward agile, digital solutions that capitalize on near-term innovation combined with long-term cultural change.

1:49pm - 1:56pm


Sponsor Talk:

By Tim Nass, VP of National Sales, SAFTI FIRST

2pm - 2:15pm


Evolve or Dissolve: Transforming Your Practice for the New Future

By Evan Troxel, Director of Digital Practice, HMC Architects

It's familiar to most of us. We have a working knowledge of digital tools to get the job done. We're even using VR to create and collaborate with clients. We're comfortable—or maybe comfortably numb. But where do we see our practices in 10 years? Truth is, most of us have been reactive to an increasingly tech-dependent profession—whether it's a reaction to the market, client demand, or simply to stay competitive. But it's time to go deeper. To take a broad look at the effects technology has on the practice of architecture at large, and how it's being applied (or not applied). In this talk, Evan Troxel is going to shift your mind and get you excited. He'll share how HMC Architects is transforming its 78-year-old firm into one that thinks like a Silicon Valley startup. He'll talk about building consensus; going deeper into the tools on which we rely; and increasing our digital literacy by using data to perform better. It's constant evolution, and our profession depends on it.

2:17pm - 2:32pm


Using Advanced Tech To Battle Hidden Costs

By Susan Heinking, AIA, NCARB, LEED Fellow, Vice President of High Performance and Sustainable Construction, Pepper Construction

How can tech tools help us rethink how to construct buildings to improve energy performance and maximize the return on investment? Imagine how much time and effort AEC professionals could save if they had a building performance app to help estimate the ultimate cost of every design decision—not to mention everything they could have done proactively to improve their payback. With technology's growing support, time is better spent designing and building more resilient, healthier buildings while uncovering hidden savings to benefit building occupants, the environment, and inform construction industry standards.

2:32pm - 2:33pm


2:33pm - 2:50pm

TRACK #1 / Q&A

2:50pm - 3:10pm



3:10pm - 3:17pm


Sponsor Talk:
Mitsubishi Electric Trane HVAC US

By Kevin Miskewicz, Director, Commercial Product Planning

3:20pm - 3:35pm


Humanizing Architectural Automation

By Andrew Heumann, Senior Scientist, WeWork

Observers of the industry are eager to proclaim that the age of architectural automation is nigh—though some do so with breathless optimism and others with frightened pessimism. What does design automation look like in actual practice, and what will it look like in the near future? How can those introducing automation into their processes do so with human designers in mind? WeWork's Andrew Heumann will explore these questions and many more.

3:37pm - 3:52pm


Leveraging Computational Design in the Realm of Occupancy Evaluations

By Dane Stokes, Design Technology Specialist, ZGF Architects

ZGF Architects is leveraging innovative computational design tools to simulate occupancy flows within its projects in the design phase, as well as record and analyze occupant satisfaction and comfort well after a building has been built. Across the firm, ZGF has found great value in computational design tools and their ability to process complex data sets, relate data sets to physical or digital space, and convey complex data in visually appealing and informative ways. Dane Stokes will discuss how this approach has allowed ZGF to refine its design process, optimize building performance on an ongoing basis, and collaborate more efficiently with clients.

3:54pm - 4:01pm


Sponsor Talk:
Industry Commitment through Education, Training and Innovation

By Chris Kann, Associate Product Manager, Carlisle Construction Materials

4:05pm - 4:20pm

TALK #10

When Buildings Design Themselves

By Lance Hosey, FAIA, LEED Fellow, Design Director, Gensler

Experts continually debate about whether machines will ever match human intelligence and creativity. More specifically for the AEC industry: Will machines ever be able to design buildings? Rather than debating about whether or when this might happen, we can ask, What if it did? How might architecture evolve if computers completely took over the design and construction process? This talk will explore the implications of a built environment undesigned by people.

4:22pm - 4:37pm

TALK #11

Bionic Practice: Data Rich Design?

By Tara Roscoe, Associate Principal, Woods Bagot

Explore the possibilities of how AI (artificial intelligence) and computer learning systems are pushing the design process to maximize productive results. Woods Bagot and their design research team have built a strong computational research platform that assists in the evaluation of space. It is grounded in machine-based learning and is used to conduct various intensive and tailored space analyses. These tools are capable of analyzing qualitative and quantitative building and design features, carrying out real estate site search and evaluating the credibility of one building location over another. What happens to the design process when computers can deliver information that is accurate, instant, and supports design that is 'provable' to be the best? This session will illustrate how these computational tools can be utilized in the design process.

4:39pm - 4:46pm

TALK #12

Sponsor Talk:

By Janice Uszenski, Assistant Sales Manager, Northeast Region, McNICHOLS

4:48pm - 5:03pm

TALK #13

Distributed [robotic] Collaboration

By Nicholas W. Cameron AIA, LEED AP, Director Digital Practice, Associate Principal, Perkins+Will

Architects make instructions for others to build from. "Design Intent" defines our scope, a counterpoint to the contractor's "Means and Methods." The former is abstract, the latter physical. An architect lamenting the translation from computer to paper goes like this: "I create this BIM model that can do amazing things, and at the end of the day someone on site is looking at a set of drawings that tell them what to build." Computers are instruments adept at abstract representation, only recently making the jump to physical production. The abstract and the physical can now talk directly to one another through the virtual world of software. What will happen to the typical division of labor between architect and contractor when Design Intent and Means and Methods are integrated from the beginning? Will fabricators and contractors retain control of production or will architects use their digital training to take advantage of the new physical possibilities. Who will run the robots?

5:03pm - 5:05pm


5:05pm - 5:25pm

TRACK #2 / Q&A

5:30pm - 7:30pm



7am - 8am


8am - 8:15am


Tony Mancini, Group Director, SGC Horizon Building Group
David Barista, Editorial Director, BD+C


8:15am - 8:30am

TALK #14

How To Create Complex Building Structures Using Prefab Strategies

By Thom Chuparkoff, AIA, LEED AP, Director of OSPORTS, Osborn Engineering, and Terry Olynyk, Director of Business Development, PCL Construction

There is a common misconception about offsite construction: that it only works for simple, repeatable building structures (hotels, multifamily, student housing, etc.). The rise of advanced technical tools and enhanced project team collaboration are expanding offsite construction applications to large-scale, complex structures. In this talk, Thom Chuparkoff and Terry Olynyk will present one such application: sports stadiums. Their solution, dubbed mOdSPORTS, applies component-centric design and commercial permanent modular construction to create customizable, adaptable, modular stadium facilities that are financially and environmentally viable for many markets. This approach allows cities and owners to build their sports facilities at a fraction of the upfront and operational costs. And with a rapid rate of construction, teams can move in and start training faster, and owners to begin utilizing revenue streams earlier. If broken down and reassembled elsewhere, a site and its components can easily be repurposed, and the pitch and corresponding facilities become park amenities and a community asset.

8:32am - 8:47am

TALK #15

Generative Design in Prefab Manufacturing

By Mac Little, VDC Manager, VIATechnik

This presentation covers new generative design techniques and data collection processes for large-scale pre-manufactured construction. Through new technologies and processes, we have the ability to operate in one source model from the procurement phase all the way to punch out. It allows rapid development and deployment of new processes utilizing a fully functional digital thread, as well as alleviates overall loss in time and money.

8:49am - 8:56am

TALK #16

Sponsor Talk:
Huber Engineered Woods

By Brian Gerello, Director of Field Technical Sales, Huber Engineered Woods

9am - 9:15am

TALK #17

Lessons From a Builder's Offsite Construction Journey

By EJ Olbright, CEO, CFC Construction, and Magued Eldaief, CEO, Prescient

The growth of offsite construction is causing more industry veterans to consider it. Hear how CFC's Founder and CEO approached it and then worked with industrial constructor Prescient's CEO to address his concerns and improve the entire process as a result. Ongoing innovation suggests this trend will only accelerate.

9:15am - 9:16am


9:16am - 9:35am

TRACK #3 / Q&A

9:35am - 9:45am


9:45am - 10:00am

TALK #18

From Big Data To Big Impact: How Data Hunters Are Disrupting Traditional Construction

By Jit Kee Chin, Executive Vice President, Chief Data Officer, Suffolk Construction

The age of data has arrived in construction—and we can't underestimate its impact. What should construction companies be doing with the information they've collected? Where are the opportunities to transform processes, better serve clients, and drive business growth? Jit Kee Chin, Suffolk's Chief Data Officer, has a long history of innovating through data analytics. She previously worked as a consultant at McKinsey for a decade. As an industry "outsider," Chin is committed to driving innovation and harnessing big data to make better building, design, and construction decisions.

10:02am - 10:17am

TALK #19

In Pursuit of the Perfect Project: Lean Six Sigma Meets AEC Project Delivery

By Lisa Feeley, CSSMBB, SPHR, Vice President, Project & Construction Management, Transwestern

Waste in the AEC industry. It has been studied by hundreds of experts. Top consulting firms have estimated that $300 to $675 billion is wasted each year in the U.S. initiating construction projects. Even if we can't all agree on one number, we can all agree that a lot of time, resources, and money are being wasted in our industry—and upwards of 75% can be controlled. In this talk, Lean Six Sigma expert Lisa Feeley will demonstrate how she is able to identify and eliminate hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of waste and inefficiencies on construction projects, all through Lean processes.

10:19am - 10:26am

TALK #20

Sponsor Talk:
Vitro Architectural Glass

By Steve Cohen, National Architectural Manager, Vitro Architectural Glass

10:28am - 10:43am

TALK #21

Beyond BIM: Getting Your Systems in Sync

By Carlos J. Cardoso, AIA, Partner, Beyer Blinder Belle

Communication, collaboration, and creative problem solving are the building blocks of the AEC industry—and the key to unlocking future possibilities for design of all types. Given the increasing complexity of design these days, it's critical for the architect to understand the logistics of the construction phase, while pursuing their design goals. To share information quickly and effectively between professionals, Carlos Cardoso created a transformational communication process that delivers changes to all parties in real time, whether they are on and off the construction site. This proprietary software is a cloud-based tool (think of a BIM model as a type of Google doc) where all team members share information simultaneously, boosting communication and fostering a better working environment for all parties. It also allows design teams to keep their clients and their funders instantaneously up to date. "Virtual Design and Construction" is the key to facilitating a better working environment for all parties.

10:45am - 11am



11am - 11:15am

TALK #22

Wechselwirkungen: The Science of Place

By Wolf Mangelsdorf, Group Director, Partner, BuroHappold, New York City

Placemaking, like architecture, has long been considered more of an art than a science, based on the notion that utilizing scientific approaches that optimize for efficiency would result in places that are soulless and uninviting. But re-focusing science on people and quality of life presents an entirely new perspective: embracing complexity and studying the interplay of engineering disciplines in support of the art of design results in places that are more human, not less. This approach—supporting the broadbrush strokes of designers with computational technology, data analysis, and a neural network to analyze data and reveal critical interrelationships—we have dubbed Wechselwirkungen, "a coming together of the seemingly unconnected."

11:17am - 11:32am

TALK #23

The Future of AEC in the Time of Big Tech

By James McNeill, Senior Computational Analysis Engineer, Custom Development Group Lead, Affiliated Engineers – AEI

Complex contracts, long and shifting project schedules, long investment horizons. These complexities and more have led the AEC industry to be a sluggish adopter of new technology. The disruption of BIM has begun to change this equation. AEC firms are rushing to catch up by bringing software development capabilities in-house. At the same time, Big Tech has begun to set its sight on the trillion-dollar construction industry. How will this affect the current players, and what will they need to do to stay competitive? AEI's James McNeill will address these questions and many more!

11:34am - 11:41am

TALK #24

Sponsor Talk:
American Institute of Steel Construction

By Jacinda L. Collins, PE, LEED Green Associate, AISC

11:43am - 11:58am

TALK #25

Designing for Enhanced Productivity: Promoting Convenience + Control

By Herbert Els, RCDD, CCNA, Senior Vice President, Building Technology Systems, WSP USA

Organizations are consistently being asked to do more with less, creating an emerging trend in office real estate: the agile work environment. However, this trend doesn't come without its challenges—perception of inconvenience due to not having a desk or "homebase" and lack of control in day-to-day routine when arriving in the office. So how do we design a successful, agile working environment? How do we harness the data from Internet of Things (IoT) to influence design and safeguard productivity while minimizing disruption in open, flexible work environments? It comes down to two words: convenience and control. In this talk, Herbert Els will discuss the importance of designing spaces to promote convenience and control, and how these key components help create a more productive and gratifying work environment—one that pleases the employees while allowing the organization to do more with less.

12pm - 2pm



- How firms are using advanced data analytics
- Working with all forms of data - the good, the bad, the fuzzy
- What's working? What's not?
- Near-future tools and applications
- Removing obstacles and pain points


- Jobsite as a factory
- Offsite construction
- Advancing "traditional" construction
- Materials and assemblies innovation
- Tools and processes to advance construction
- Removing obstacles and pain points
- The practicality of "true" IPD


- Novel applications for AI + machine learning
- Identifying the lowest-hanging fruit for automation
- What's working? What's not?
- Removing obstacles and pain points
- The rise of robotics


- How can AEC professionals keep up with new/enhanced products, materials, and assemblies?
- What's lacking when it comes to research, specifying, and installing products, materials, systems?
- Where are your pain points?
- How and when do you make the leap to specify/adopt a new product, material, or service?
- What factors make the difference in your decision to use a new product or service?
- How do you "test" a new product or service toward possible adoption?
- What are the potential liabilities (legal, $$$) of using new products, and how have your dealt with these concerns?


- How do you deal with the four-generation firm?
- What are you doing to overcome recruitment and retention of top talent?
- How big does a AEC company need to be in order to be world-class competitive in today's environment?
- What training or education have you found to be effective with your professional staff (and non-professional, too)?
- How are you keeping up with tech advancements?
- How to nurture a culture of innovation
- What's your firm's innovation hit rate?


- Project delivery methods: IPD, design-assist, design-build
- Do they want new technology?
- Use of tech to inform clients
- VR for client walkthroughs
- How does the AEC firm become more than just a hired gun?


- Skills for the today
- Skills for the future
- What are you doing to overcome recruitment and retention of top talent?
- Training: What's working? What's not?