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This paper discusses Building Information Modelling (BIM) in relation to proposing design science as a methodology for BIM research. The paper firstly outlines how BIM is changing construction work practices to a more collaborative and integrated set of procedures, facilitated through the application of modelling technologies. The use of traditional research methods for BIM research in the context of developing and subsequently evaluating a BIM process or technology is then questioned. The premise of this rationale is that BIM revolves around new practices and emerging technologies that propose to provide efficiency in delivering constructed assets in the built environment. Traditional academic research methods tend to focus on existing reality, which seeks to explain the existence of phenomenon in the built environment. However, BIM focuses on a new reality through a change in current work practices, thus, a methodology which facilitates an evaluation of this new reality is necessary. A practical approach to research is discussed whereby there is more participation in the research process by the researcher. Design science is a research methodology, which emanates from a practical research philosophy and outlines a formulated process for developing and evaluating a BIM technology or practice. This paper presents a four staged process to design sciences that could be implemented when developing and evaluating a BIM artifact.
Kehily, D., Underwood, J. (2015) Design Science: Choosing an appropriate methodology for research in BIM. CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 12th -13th 2015.