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  • Energy efficiency and residential values: a changing European landscape

    The aim of this insight paper is to provide valuers and other interested stakeholders with an overview of the impact of energy efficiency on the value of residential property in Europe, whether that housing stock is owner-occupied, rented within the private sector or social housing.

    It considers the role of the valuer and how, through their data collection and reporting processes, they can play a part in promoting a more energy efficient housing stock.

    To achieve these aims, it reviews the context within which energy efficiency is rising up the European regulatory agenda and the impact that this is having on value drivers.

  • Valuation and sale price

    The MSCI Real Estate Valuation and sale price study has been running for over 20 years. This study is an important measure for the investment valuation community and contributes to the transparency and integrity of the marketplace. Valuations are key to performance measurement and pricing in the property industry.

    This report compares data from the 2017 MSCI UK Annual Property Index against the sale prices of UK commercial property. It analyses the performance of the valuation profession in the UK property market by tracking the difference between valuations of real estate against actual sales.

    This report addresses two key questions in the UK market:
    1. How much do sale prices differ from previous valuations?
    2. Are differences random or were sale prices consistently above or below the latest valuation?

  • Cities, health and well-being

    The urban environment has long been recognised as a crucial to human health, but the last few years have seen a marked growth in the health and well-being agenda. This insight paper recognises the major contribution property professionals can make in establishing healthy, liveable places for all.

  • The use and value of commercial property data

    As the property industry adapts to the realities of a digital world dominated by cloud computing and artificial intelligence (AI), the amount of available data concerning real estate is increasing exponentially. Data concerns almost every aspect of the built environment: from how we use and interact with properties as individuals and businesses, through to how a building's energy consumption and construction details are being recorded and analysed to help surveyors, asset managers, building managers, developers and investors make informed decisions about real estate processes.

    The industry appears to be at a tipping point, with chartered surveyors and other property professionals having to use skills beyond the traditional surveying competencies. Data analysis is one such area that is growing in importance. It is no longer enough simply to possess data; the value lies in being able to use it.

    This paper aims to discuss the benefits of and challenges to an increasing use of data in the commercial property market. It considers not only its availability and quality but also the skills needed by surveyors to recognise its uses and maximise the value in analysing it. The paper deals with the ownership of data, its security and regulation and also makes predictions and recommendations for the future of a property world full of accurate, easily available data.

  • International models for delivery of affordable housing in Asia

    This insight paper aims to identify different national housing models across Asia for delivering affordable housing, in order to see what lessons may be transferable. It raises questions about acceptable standards of affordable housing for different socioeconomic conditions, including tenure security, construction standards and environmental/space standards.

  • Drones: applications and compliance for surveyors

    This insight paper discusses the opportunities, rapidly developing applications and compliance challenges of using drones in a surveying environment, particularly in light of recent high-profile cases of misuse. The insight paper also highlights the fast-moving national and international regulatory issues impacting the technology's integration into widespread use in the land, property and construction sectors.

  • Valuation of flexible workspace

    Flexible workspace is real estate space of varying size provided for business or institutional purposes for varying periods of time, usually for shorter periods and with more inclusive benefits than a traditional lease.

    While the concept of flexible workspace has been around for a century or more, in recent years it has moved from a niche part of the office space market to become a dominant sub-sector of the market. As such, there is greater interest than ever before in appropriate ways to conduct valuations of properties that provide flexible workspace.

    This insight paper includes insights and reflections from key players and commentators in the flexible workspace market. These include some of the largest operators, brokers, lenders and providers of valuation services in the world, as well as smaller regional stakeholders. It has been compiled and edited to develop and enhance the understanding of this market for the benefit of the wider flexible workspace industry, reaching beyond the needs of valuers and other real estate professionals to all stakeholders, including those with no technical expertise.

  • Big data, smart cities, intelligent buildings - surveying in a digital world

    This insight paper considers the potential disruptive impact of big data and digital technologies on traditional surveying practice. Some of our professionals are directly engaged with the area on a day-to-day basis as data generators. Their industries have always had a strong technical basis and have been closely involved in the sector’s technological developments. Others rely on large databases and big data as users of other people’s content, and so approach this world from a different perspective. Some professionals may seem to be less directly impacted, nevertheless their sectors are steadily being transformed, even as their private practice appears to remain the same.

    It is fair to say that no part of surveying practice will remain untouched by the impact of big data and digital technologies. This will be either through proactive adoption of new digitally based approaches to our work; being led by client demand to deliver these services; or being forced
    by digitally enabled competition from existing providers and new entrants.

  • Blockchain: an emerging opportunity for surveyors?

    Every so often a revolutionary digital break-through emerges. The most recent being a technology allowing a decentralised, reliable and verifiable record of transactions, which is maintained across multiple computers using peer-to-peer networking and cryptography – blockchain.
    This insight paper provides a balanced view of the outlook for blockchain, its application to the real estate, built and natural environment and construction industries, and what it could mean for RICS professionals and RICS-regulated firms looking to stay at the forefront of innovation.

  • Measuring social value in infrastructure: Lessons from the public sector

    As the infrastructure sector continues to shift its focus from economic value to more holistic social value, projects are being designed, built and assessed in a new way. Government regulation and consumer demands mean that the industry is being required to deliver and demonstrate social impact. Indeed, social value represents an opportunity for the infrastructure industry to adjust its way of doing business to affect positive change, and impact on people’s quality of life as we seek to ‘Build Back Better’ from COVID-19.

    RICS professionals will have an increasingly key role to play in this, helping clients understand and set social value strategy, and measuring the impact of projects effectively. Not least because national governments, such as, for example, the UK’s emerging ‘value toolkit’, will increasingly demand a wider ESG approach to construction initiation and procurement.

    However, embedding social value into infrastructure delivery is not without its challenges. Currently, the infrastructure sector does not consistently define or measure social value. It lacks a robust set of standards and objectives to guide the delivery and assessment of social value, and there is little capacity for social value measurement.

    Within this insight paper, we provide an introduction and overview of social value measurement to RICS professionals. We outline the current issues with measurement, and set out the foundations for consistent and robust social value measurement by demonstrating and discussing the best practice developed in the public sector.

    This paper:
    • Reviews current practice, focussing on core measurement frameworks considered best practice by government bodies, such as cost-benefit analysis
    • Addresses the issue of valuing the broader societal effects of infrastructure projects (including environmental impacts).
    • Details 7 international case-studies to illustrate and discuss best practice.

  • Benchmarking in the infrastructure sector

    Building a strong project programme – cost, schedule and proven delivery record – is critical for the sustained infrastructure investment that will be fundamental to the economic recovery from the impact of COVID-19, and in pioneering better spaces for people to work and live.

    An essential part of capital planning and programming is developing a firm understanding of project costs and performance. Benchmarking, the process of comparing projected or actual project cost and performance, is therefore central. And by impacting the economic, social and environmental outcomes of infrastructure projects, benchmarking ensures investments in the sector are effective and significant investments in major global infrastructure projects are prudently and effectively deployed. But what are the obstacles holding back consistent benchmarking across the industry? And how can we improve it?

    Within this global insight paper we provide an overview of benchmarking in the infrastructure sector for RICS professionals, discussing the types of benchmarking and the processes involved, and demonstrating examples of best practice.

    This paper also:

    - Outlines the key benefits of benchmarking
    - Discusses the use of data and analytics in modern benchmarking practices
    - Demonstrates the practical relevance of benchmarking through a series of case studies.

    “Benchmarking is a blueprint for future spending. The process helps both government and industry make more informed and transparent decisions about the future of infrastructure priorities.”
    Denise M. Berger, SVP and Chief Operating Officer, AECOM

  • The Future of BIM: Digital transformation in the UK in construction

    There is no doubt that COVID-19 has accelerated the pace of digitalisation in the construction and infrastructure sector.

    The industry is now on the verge of the fourth industrial revolution: digitalisation is having a profound impact on the work itself, the way the industry works together, and it will drastically affect surveyors’ abilities to progress innovation and create better places and spaces for future generations. Building information modeling (BIM) and the accompanying use of a common data environment (CDE) form the bedrock of this transformation.

    As clients increasingly look to technology for solutions that create efficiencies, RICS professionals needs to gain a better-informed understanding of the potential of BIM, how it is evolving, and vitally, how they can take advantage its development to stay ahead of the curve.

    Within this insight paper, we look at how BIM has evolved and merged into a much broader paradigm in the UK, and how this might set an example for other markets. As the UK transitioned from national to ISO standards, the focus has shifted from considering adoption and implementation of BIM as the end goal to using BIM and CDE as a catalyst to promote a holistic shift towards a model-driven approach to the design, delivery, and operation of constructed assets.

    The insight paper provides answers about the evolving ‘what’ and ‘why’ of BIM and its potential for surveyors, including:

    - the background to BIM
    - the need to innovate
    - why the development of the definition of BIM needs to be explored
    - the need for surveyors to examine the digital technologies available, and a plan of action for implementing them.

  • The age of unreal estate

    We are in the middle of a period of drastic socioeconomic change today, change that has widespread implications for the use of real estate. Rapid technological advances, a growing emphasis on environmental and social impacts, and the wellbeing and productivity of a building’s users have all become important drivers for reconsidering how we think about property. COVID-19 has dramatically accelerated this conversation, radically changing demand for and use of buildings across the built environment while bringing unprecedented challenges.

    Real estate must and will respond. For it to do so, we must ask how it will remain relevant to its customers, and therefore how RICS professionals engaged in its design, supply and management will also ensure that they remain relevant in a changing landscape.

    This insight paper suggests an agenda for change, including a customer-centric, people-centric and responsible approach that recognises the rapidly evolving role of real estate. While compliance, cost and function remain critical, they must now be considered alongside other factors of equal importance to organisational objectives, such as environmental performance, stimulation and the experience that they provide. To measure a building's performance in these areas and inform professionals’ decision-making, better and more detailed data will be key.

  • Developing a global standard for fire reporting

    Fire is a universal risk, impacting all societies, economies and geographies. The costs to people, property, business and the environment are enormous. However, the ways in which data on fire incidents, fatalities, injuries, impacts and costs are collected, recorded and estimated vary greatly across countries, organisations and sectors. This undermines decision-making, resource application and the effective management of the risks of fire.

    A lack of consistent data makes it difficult to compare substantial factors, complicating the development of effective mitigation strategies at all levels - from government policies, to business or portfolio risk management approaches and occupant or tenant individual risk management decisions on furnishings, appliances, behaviours and more.

    It is a crucial issue to address as we act in the public interest to help build safer and better places to live and work.

    Improved data on the causes and impacts of fire will enable a better understanding of the types of communities, buildings and infrastructure where fire safety can be significantly improved through application of risk mitigation standards, guidelines and regulation.

    This insight paper:

    - provides an overview of the scale of the impact of fire loss globally
    - discusses challenges in data collection and data comparison
    - sets out what data should be collected and
    - proposes a global standard for fire reporting to improve approaches to tackling fire and its impacts.

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