Our Year in Review - the Built Environment Committee

Chair: Alisdair Gillies // Co-chairs: Wendy McEwan, Andy Marr

The Built Environment Committee covers a wide spectrum of interests across industry sectors and job disciplines. To cater for a varied audience and to keep up to date with rapidly emerging trends within the real estate sector, the Built Environment Committee hosts an annual flagship event outlining the emerging trends across the four main real estate verticals – Commercial, Industrial, Residential and Logistics. This event helps us to craft our plans for the year and in 2020 the two core themes were “the future of shared and co-working spaces” and “the importance of data and cyber security in connected buildings and cities”.

As the COVID-19 situation deteriorated in the first quarter of the year, the Committee took steps to re-engineer our events calendar. We immediately went from physical events to virtual events and developed a more flexible and agile process to get relevant topics to the members in a timely manner. It’s all about COVID-19: Getting through it, getting back to work, and what the future will look like.

The construction industry in Singapore was thrown into turmoil with rapidly evolving regulations and restrictions. To support our members, we hosted a webinar on the Impact of COVID-19 on the construction industry and the potential relief measures under Singapore’s Temporary Measures Act. This topic clearly hit a nerve as the webinar video has received over 800 views to date!

As offices were shut and organisations were asking their teams to work from home, we then delivered a series of podcasts with industry experts addressing various
challenges that were unfamiliar to most organisations. Topics covered working from home, mental health, HR policies and how to re-open offices safely.

BritCham Singapore Podcast Ep 36  BritCham Singapore Podcast Ep 37  BritCham Singapore Podcast Ep 38  BritCham Singapore Podcast Ep 40  BritCham Singapore Podcast Ep 41

In Q4, as we were returning to a relative level of normalcy, we hosted a webinar on the future of design to share how offices can be designed to be safer and healthier for employees and more resilient to future pandemics.

In addition to the COVID-related content, we also continued to deliver against our core themes for the year. 2020 was a milestone year for the Chamber’s sustainability aspirations and in support of this the Built Environment Committee put out multiple Orient articles on sustainable buildings and green real estate. We also took part in a webinar hosted by the Sustainability Committee on how sustainable businesses can contribute to the UN SDGs.

We rounded off the year with a collaboration with the ICT Committee to deliver a webinar on the importance of cyber security in real estate – “My Building got hacked”.

The 2021 calendar is already taking shape and will build on the platform established in 2020, with more collaboration with other committees in the areas of sustainability, prop-tech and future cities. In addition to the delivery of content, the Built Environment Committee has recently appointed a new chair and co-chair to delivery the strategy for the next two years.

Find out more at britcham.org.sg/committees/built-environment.