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Concrete In Australia : December 2008
CONCRETE INSTITUTE PROJECTS Update on Concrete Institute Technical Projects Research Forum 08 The Institute’s Project Manager Technical Services Ben Cosson gives an update on recent progress. An outcome document from the Concrete Research Forum held in July has been prepared and distributed to all delegates that were both invited and in attendance. Below is an extract from the outcome document providing a summary of the key themes and recommendations: The majority of delegates identifi ed a need for stronger collaboration throughout the concrete sector - in particular, building the capacity for effective R&D in the sector by: • encouraging strategic sustainability thinking in the concrete sector. Begin by defi ning sustainability across the sector, review current trends, future societal and infrastructure needs and address immediate challenges, eg: emissions trading schemes (ETS), energy effi ciency of buildings and supplementary cementitious materials (operation vs construction). • encouraging, initiating and developing research into concrete durability and longevity, and the service life of infrastructure and buildings; encouraging new technologies to adapt to a changing climate and public demand; facilitating commercialisation of durable materials and longevity design and technology options in industry. • increasing diffusion of innovation by addressing intellectual property considerations and systems for sharing information about emerging and current research outcomes; understanding sectoral interests that can hinder innovation, by restricting sharing of knowledge and research outcomes; strengthening innovation practice through collaborative research projects that draw on the diversity of expertise. • contributing towards improving knowledge management The Institute is well positioned to critically examine and canvas future initiatives which are within the scope of its mission and resources. tools such as “life cycle assessment” (LCA), design, product and performance optimisation tools to enable more informed decision-making. Develop research projects that incorporate sustainability, durability, longevity and other technological and knowledge management issues. • developing communication material on research outcomes, emerging issues and concrete products and processes for a broad range of stakeholders across the sector; reviewing communication options and effectiveness of forums. Participants indicated that further discussions in the form of follow-up specialist groups or small working groups to review the fi ndings and advance initiatives between industry and academia would be helpful. The Institute is well positioned to critically examine and 14 Concrete in Australia Vol 34 No 4 canvas future initiatives which are within the scope of its mission and resources. Those initiatives involve meeting the Institute’s criteria. Available resources will be prioritised and incorporated into the Strategic Plan. Initiatives that are beyond the current resources of the Institute, but within its mission, will be considered by the Institute for determination of how best to proceed. The outcome document and the process of prioritisation will be discussed at the next meeting of National Council on Thursday 27 November 2008. A condensed version of the outcome document can be downloaded from the Institute’s website at www. concreteinstitute.com.au/index.php. Standards Standards Australia has recently provided an update on the Status of Standards Projects. The update again highlighted the New Business Model of Standards Australia and provided an indication as to how projects have been assessed and categorised into three key categories being: • active projects • provisional projects • projects requiring resubmission Currently the only active projects are: • Concrete Structures (Revision of AS3600), with the revision of the supplement to AS 3600 being marked as provisional status • Formwork for concrete (Draft of AS3610-Part 1 was released for public comment from August through to October 2008) • Piling – Design and installation. Many of the projects where the Institute has a representative, have been placed under provisional project status. Provisional projects, as set out in the update provided by Standards Australia, are those that cannot be fully resourced by Standards Australia at the current time. It is also stated that provisional projects may be best served by one of the pathways offered through the New Business Model, which include, but are not limited to: • committee driven solutions – where autonomous committees draft Standards with defi ned technical and secretarial support and access to technical advice and editorial support from Standards Australia • an accredited Standards Development Organisation, through consideration and approval by Accreditation Board for Standards Development Organisations. With increased numbers in our reference groups, the Concrete Institute may be better placed to respond to Standards and take advantage of the pathways in their New Business Model. Standard Committees have now established reference groups for: • BD-002 Concrete Structures