International Research Organizations

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PATH sponsored a review of foreign homebuilding and construction organizations to see both where else US manufacturers and homebuilders might get ideas for new technologies, and what kinds of ideas these organizations are producing.

Multi-Country Organizations

European Council for Construction Research, Development and Innovation Logo European Council for Construction Research, Development and Innovation (ECCREDI)

The European organizations participating in ECCREDI represent the principal actors involved in the construction sector: contractors, engineering consultants, architects, designers, product and material producers, and research bodies. The aim of ECCREDI is to contribute to the competitiveness, quality, safety, and environmental performance of the construction sector, as well as contribute to the overall sustainability of the built environment, by increasing the extent and effectiveness of construction research, technical and process development, and innovation.

European Network of Building Research Institutes Logo European Network of Building Research Institutes (ENBRI)

The European Network of Building Research Institutes was founded in 1988 with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding. At present, it includes the principal building research institutes of Member States of the European Union and of the European Economic Space. In 2000, its membership was extended to European Candidate Members.

European Network of Construction Companies for Research and Development Logo European Network of Construction Companies for Research and Development (ENCORD)

The European Network of Construction Companies for Research and Development is a pre-competitive platform for advancing customer-oriented, industry-led innovation and best practices in the construction field. ENCORD was founded in 1989 by a group of major European construction companies and a supplier of construction materials. The initiative was taken in the light of the European Commission Framework Research and Development Program from 1990 to 1994. R&D; in the construction industry sector is of vital importance in Europe in order to keep pace with the changing needs of society and to maintain international competitiveness. The sector is one of the largest productive sectors in the European Community, and is being challenged by non-European companies.

International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction Logo International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction (CIB)

CIB (known in English as the International Council for Building) was established in 1953 as an Association whose objectives were to stimulate and facilitate international cooperation and information exchange between governmental research institutes in the building and construction sector, with an emphasis on those institutes engaged in technical fields of research. In 1998, the name was changed to the International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction, but the CIB acronym is still used. CIB has developed into a worldwide network of over 5,000 experts from about 500 member organizations active in the research community, industry or education, who cooperate and exchange information in over 50 CIB Commissions covering all fields in building and construction related research and innovation.


Australian Building Energy Council Logo Australian Building Energy Council (ABEC)

The vision of ABEC is to act as a peak strategic body, articulating the views of the Building and Construction Industry on energy-related matters which will foster an industry-driven move towards developing world best practices in the management of greenhouse gas emissions. The mission of ABEC is to ensure the better economic performance of the Industry through the introduction of a range of energy-related programs that produce measurable outcomes in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute Logo Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI)

The Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) is a national research organization, specializing in housing and urban research and policy. AHURI’s mission is to make a real difference in housing and related urban issues throughout Australia by the creation and dissemination of knowledge in housing markets, housing policy and programs, and the urban environment in cities, towns, and regions.

CSIRO Manufacturing & Infrastructure Technology Logo CSIRO Manufacturing & Infrastructure Technology (CMIT)

The Commonwealth Scientific Research & Industrial Organization (CSIRO) was founded by the Australian Government in 1926 to support the country’s primary industries. The organization remains wholly owned, and predominantly funded, by the Government. CSIRO is one of the world’s largest and most diverse scientific research institutions. With a staff of more than 6,000, CSIRO conducts some 10% of Australia’s total R&D; effort, including about 12% of the R&D; contracted out by industry. Now one of CSIRO’s largest divisions, CSIRO Manufacturing and Infrastructure Technology (CMIT) has a turnover of over $70 million, with more than 500 specialist staff (350 in research) and laboratories in four states, placed to serve the needs of manufacturing and infrastructure industries.


Belgian Building Research Institute Logo Belgian Building Research Institute (BBRI)

Established in 1960, the Belgian Building Research Institute is an applied scientific research and information institute for the Belgian construction sector. It serves the technical interests of construction companies, the industry, designers, and government agencies. It works closely with a network of universities and other specialized research institutes. Thanks to its multidisciplinary approach, BBRI can handle the most complicated construction problems.


Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation Logo Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation is the Government of Canada’s national housing agency, helping Canadians gain access to a wide choice of quality, affordable homes. CMHC is constantly looking for better ways to meet the housing needs of today and tomorrow for Canadians, who expect their homes to be energy-efficient, comfortable, durable and affordable. CMHC research aims to improve housing and support the housing market by being its nation’s key source of reliable and objective housing information.

Institute for Research in Construction Logo Institute for Research in Construction (IRC)

IRC, part of the National Research Council, is the leader in research, technology, and innovation for the Canadian construction industry, the country’s largest industrial sector. Through its research and in partnership with industry, the Institute works to improve the safety, durability, and comfort of Canadian workplaces, homes, and public infrastructure while helping builders become more competitive. IRC works with industry to develop innovative building materials and products such as high-performance concrete, superior walls, windows and roofs, and fire-resistant and energy-efficient systems.

National Research Council Logo National Research Council (NRC)

The National Research Council is the Government of Canada’s premier organization for research and development. Active for over 80 years, NRC is composed of 19 different institutes and national programs, spanning a wide variety of disciplines and offering a broad array of services. Located in each Canadian province, NRC plays a major role in stimulating community-based innovation. NRC institutes and programs are organized into two key areas: Technology and Industry Support, and the Research and Technology Development Program.


Chilean Construction Chamber Logo Chilean Construction Chamber (CChC)

The Chilean Construction Chamber (CChC) is the only private corporation in Chile dedicated to promoting construction as a whole, one of the most important activities for the nation’s development. Since 1951, the Chamber participates in the improvement and rationalization of construction activities; it also contributes to the generation of policies to face the enormous building and infrastructure challenges of Chile.


Danish Building and Urban Research Institute Logo Danish Building and Urban Research Institute

By og Byg is the national institute for building and urban research in Denmark. The institute used to be called SBI as an abbreviation of Statens Byggeforskningsinstitut, the official name. Now, the abbreviation SBI has been replaced by the name By og Byg (which directly translated reads something like ‘town and building’, although this translation is not used as a name). Also, the official name in English is changed from Danish Building Research Institute to Danish Building and Urban Research.

Danish Center for Building Information Logo Danish Center for Building Information

Byggecentrum’s main purpose is to spread information about construction, energy, and environmental issues within the construction industry in Denmark primarily to professionals, companies, and public institutions.


Tekes: The Finnish National Technology Agency Logo Tekes: The Finnish National Technology Agency

Tekes, the National Technology Agency, finances the research and development (R&D;) projects of companies and universities in Finland. The funds are awarded from state budget via the Ministry of Trade and Industry. The impact of Tekes activities has been felt as shown by increasing exports, a broader industrial base, more jobs, and an improvement in the general welfare of society. Tekes also coordinates and finances Finnish participation in international technology initiatives. Tekes and its technology programs offer excellent channels for cooperation with Finnish key players in R&D.; Tekes maintains a technical information portal relating to the results of its research and development programs. The portal is called Akseli.

TAKE – Development Center for Finnish Building Services, Ltd.

The goal of TAKE’s activities is to make the building technology industry customer-based and competitive in Finland and abroad. TAKE starts R&D; projects aimed at bringing about change in building product markets, influencing widespread utilization of new technologies, and advancing the industry. TAKE’s actions are controlled at all levels by companies involved in building product development and utilization. Activities are controlled by companies with commitments to projects. Take’s backing groups cover all technologies and businesses in building technology; so starting different projects must be done with care. All activities must fare in international comparison.


Centre Scientific et Technique du Batimat Logo Centre Scientific et Technique du Batimat (CSTB)

CSTB’s experts, researchers, engineers and high-level technicians – backed up by the most advanced equipment and modern technology – apply their specialized skills to research, technical consultancy, quality assessment, and knowledge dissemination. These complementary professions and the broad scope of our activities constitute CSTB’s comprehensive approach to construction, encompassing the urban context, with its related services and relevant expertise. CSTB comprises a wide range of prominent experts, specializing in building materials and techniques, equipment, safety, thermology, acoustics, aerodynamics, lighting, environmental and health issues, advanced communications technology, as well as economics and sociology.


Icelandic Building Research Institute Logo Icelandic Building Research Institute (IBRI)

The IBRI is an independent institution responsible to Iceland’s Ministry of Industry, operating according to status in research in the interests of industry and commerce since 1965. The role of the Institute is mainly to facilitate innovation, technical progress, improved production, and lower costs by performing applied research in the field of buildings and constructions. In addition, IBRI facilitates technological transfer, acts as an information center, and advises the authorities on building and construction matters. IBRI activities are carried out in the following fields: building technology, concrete research, geology and soil mechanics, road research, cost and labor surveys, and publication and information.

The Netherlands

TNO Building and Construction Research Logo TNO Building and Construction Research (TNO)

TNO’s mission is to translate scientific knowledge into real-life applications in order to strengthen the innovative power of government and industry. The organization’s clients include the government (ranging from local to national authorities), developing parties, the supply industry, construction companies, and consulting and engineering firms, most notably in the area of civil engineering, residential, industrial and commercial construction, shipbuilding, and the offshore industry. The core activities of TNO Building and Construction Industry include the development of new application-based knowledge, the application of knowledge (expert customized work), and providing state-of-the-art knowledge products and services such as models, software, and consulting.

New Zealand

Building Research Association of New Zealand Logo Building Research Association of New Zealand (BRANZ)

The Building Research Association of New Zealand Incorporated (BRANZ Inc.) is an industry association, wholly owned and governed by the New Zealand building and construction industry. The BRANZ Inc. Board is made up of nominees from a wide range of industry organizations. BRANZ and its associated companies are the building and construction industry’s research, testing, consulting, and technology transfer organizations, established to meet the needs of the industry through the services they offer.


Norwegian Building Research Institute Logo Norwegian Building Research Institute (NBI)

The Norwegian Building Research Institute is the leading national centre of technical and sociological research and development related to buildings and the built environment. The head office, located in Oslo, has five departments. In addition, there is one research department located in Trondheim at the campus of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. There are five areas of expertise at NBI: materials and construction; building process; housing, the building environment and society; building services, energy, and the indoor environment; and knowledge transfer.


Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning Logo Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning (Formas)

Formas encourages and supports scientifically significant research related to sustainable development. This means providing support in the areas of the environment, agricultural sciences (including forestry, horticulture, veterinary medicine, food, fish and reindeer husbandry), and spatial planning which consists of building sciences and community systems. The projects supported cover a wide range of approaches from basic research to more applied efforts to demonstration and experimental projects.

Swedish Research Council Logo Swedish Research Council (SRC)

The Swedish Research Council bears national responsibility for developing the country’s basic research towards attainment of a strong international position. The Council has three main tasks: research funding, science communication, and research policy. Research is the foundation for the development of knowledge in society, and the basis of high-quality education. Research is also crucial as a means of enhancing welfare through economic, social, and cultural development. One essential principle is that research should be unrestricted and unaffiliated. Active researchers are, therefore, in a majority on the Council’s board, as in the Scientific Councils and the Committee for Educational Science, i.e. in all bodies where applications are assessed and evaluated, and grants decided upon. This guarantees the quality and diversity of basic research.

United Kingdom

Building Research Establishment Logo Building Research Establishment (BRE)

The Building Research Establishment is the United Kingdom’s leading centre of expertise on buildings, construction, energy, environment, fire, and risk. BRE provides research-based consultancy, testing, and certification services to customers world-wide. BRE is owned by the Foundation for the Building Environment (FBE), a registered charity with a mission to champion excellence and innovation in the built environment. The construction industry must design, build, and maintain structures that satisfy the clients’ needs for quality, safety, sustainability, and best value. Failure to correctly address these issues is currently costing the industry an estimated £2.5 billion per year.

Construction Industry Research and Information Association Logo Construction Industry Research and Information Association (CIRIA)

With more than 500 corporate members CIRIA (Construction Industry Research and Information Association) is the independent voice of construction and environment in the United Kingdom. Working hand in hand with the government, key trade bodies and the Industry’s leading organizations. CIRIA’s mission is to improve the performance of all those involved in construction and environment through greater understanding of the issues it faces. The largest part of CIRIA’s work consists of collaborative research programs which addresses all kinds of issues topical to construction, such as legislation and regulation, training, management and economics.

Foundation for the Built Environment Logo Foundation for the Built Environment (FBE)

FBE’s mission is to champion excellence and innovation in the built environment. Through its research programs, FBE aims to achieve:

  • a higher quality built environment;
  • built facilities that offer improved functionality and value;
  • a more efficient and sustainable construction sector;
  • a higher level of innovative practice.

The FBE also stimulates debate on challenges and opportunities in the built environment.

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