Journal of Circular Economy

An applied scholarly journal on circular economy

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Requiring Circularity Data in BIM With Information Delivery Specification

Artur Tomczak, Claudio Benghi, Léon van Berlo, Eilif Hjelseth


Implementing the circular economy model in the built environment demands high-quality information about the building stock and products. Building Information Modeling (BIM) is considered vital to capturing relevant information. This study uses a constructive research method to assess BIM support for effectively capturing circularity-related information. We identified circularity needs and transcribed them into actionable, machine-interpretable form, applying the novel Information Delivery Specification (IDS) standard. Considered use cases include material composition, quality and identity, environmental impacts, and disassembly aspects. We discuss the benefits, challenges, and suitability of modelling such information based on the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) schema. The developed IDS specification allows for semi-automated compliance checking of BIM content. Most considered aspects can be expressed in BIM but often lack consistent terminology. Difficult to document are disassembly instructions and elements’ connections. Discussed technical limitations help rationalise the amount of information reasonable to capture in BIM. The study bridges the gap between sustainability expert demand for data and BIM deliverables. Resultant knowledge enables practitioners to increase the availability of quality data relevant for future building disassembly, reuse or adaptation.


Circular Economy, Design for Disassembly (DfD), Building Information Modeling (BIM), Information Delivery Specification (IDS), Industry Foundation Classes (IFC), Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), Compliance Checking, Legal Reasoning, Information Requirements.


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