The future of construction and AI with René Morkos

by Paul Thorpe | September 8, 2023 |  3 min read

Home / Insights / People / The future of construction and AI …

As part of our Digital Climate podcast series, BIM Academy Director Paul Thorpe invited ALICE Technologies Founder and CEO, René Morkos to talk about innovation within technology and, more specifically, technology within the construction industry and where the industry is headed.

René is one of the leading minds in artificial intelligence for the construction industry, and as well as his roles in ALICE Technologies, René is a Professor at Stanford University, where he teaches a new breed of construction production management. By using artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and other theories, René has changed how the problem of construction production management is both formulated and solved.

He also invented the World’s first Generative Construction Simulator that ingests BIM models and automatically generates millions of valid simulations to build a project. In this podcast René talks about what parametric regenerative technology does, how this is new to construction, and how it is the ultimate game changer!

First off, Paul and René talk about how René got into the world of AI and what his predictions are for how to best utilise AI and ALICE Technologies inventions in construction.  René says the premise behind Alice Technologies is simple: artificial intelligence powered modelling software could help the construction industry save time and money. Through ALICE, clients can simulate different construction scenarios, variables and strategies, and optimise their projects. ALICE’s technology reduces the cost of construction, labour and equipment by approximately 13%, and then durations by 17%.

Paul says, to many, construction is not typically considered as an industry to adopt new technology at a comparable pace with other forward-thinking industries. Does René think AI could be different? Is this the digital push construction finally needs? René agrees, AI is most certainly a catalyst for change within construction. René says that one of the things that he has pushed for in his research is to build a theoretical foundation that will enable this next wave of innovation to occur. AI is a key to unlocking new solutions for the way we design and build.

Paul asks what is the utopia for construction? René responds that his utopia is a digital representation of what you are building. The reason this is significant is that once you start with digital representations you can start to uncover system wide efficiencies.

Listen to the full podcast to hear more of René’s insights and predictions for how best to use AI in construction.

Listen now

About the author

Paul Thorpe

Director, BIM Academy

Paul is experienced in managing the digital delivery of large scale construction and infrastructure projects across the globe. Paul joined the BIM Academy team on his return to the UK after living and working in Hong Kong for several years.

Paul has specialisms in information management, BIM execution, digital twin development and delivery, and digital transformation. Paul is a Project Management Professional with the Project Management Institute (PMI) and a Chartered Member of the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB).

With a proven ability to build and lead high performing teams across major projects, Paul brings his experience in developing digital business plans and executing company wide digital strategies to BIM Academy.