Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 222222
Loughborough University

Centre for Innovative and Collaborative Construction Engineering

2004

Dr Esther Obonyo

Thesis

APRON: Agent-Based Specification and Procurement within the AEC industry

Project Title

APRON: Agent-Based Specification and Procurement within the AEC Industry

Company

BIW

Supervisors

Academic:
Professor CJ Anumba
Professor A Thorpe

Industrial:
Mr Tim Aikin

Director of Research:
Professor AGF Gibb

Research Period

2000 - 2004

APRON: Agent-Based Specification and Procurement within the AEC Industry

Context/Background

The AEC/ FM (Architecture, Engineering and Construction/ Facility Management) embodies professionals in information intensive activities. Decisions have to be made based on information available, but there are heterogeneous, distributed, dynamic, semi-structured, unstructured data and knowledge sources. The contents change and cannot be predetermined because they are implemented by different people, at different times, using different tools and techniques.

This problem can now be remedied. With the evolution of intelligent, active and personalized collaborators for human-computer interaction, automated information filtering and information retrieval is no longer a myth. Agents present a distributed approach to locate, retrieve and integrate information, and therefore resulting in applications that co-operate, co-ordinate and share information with other applications.

Aims and Objectives

• To conduct a review of agent-based applications in construction
• To investigate the integration of agent technology with existing computer applications
• To develop a functional specification of an agent-based system for e-commerce
• Implement a system for e-commerce in construction focussing initially on the specification of components and materials as well as integration with existing construction applications
• To evaluate the system

Method and Current Status

  • Literature Review: This will focus on the theory, development and utilisation of agent-based systems.
  • Case Study: In order to acquire in-depth information on the current practice in the AEC/ FM industry, selected companies studied.
  • Interviews: Discussions will be held with experts to establish prevailing attitudes and research methods in agent technology.
  • Computer modelling: Innovative techniques that have been successfully applied in other agent-based systems will be used to develop and implement a functional specification.

Owolabi, A. A., Anumba, C. J. & El-Hamalawi, A. (2003), Towards implementing integrated building product libraries, Construction Innovation 3(3), 175–194.
http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/pdfplus/10.1108/14714170310814927

Obonyo, E., Anumba, C.J. and Thorpe, A. (2004). Specification and Procurement of Construction Products, A Case for an Agent-based System. International Journal of IT in Architecture, Engineering and Construction. Volume 2, Issue 3, 2004: pp 204-215.
http://itc.scix.net/data/works/att/itaec-2004-16.content.pdf

Obonyo , E., Anumba, C.J. and Thorpe, A., (2005). APRON: an agent-based specification and procurement system for construction products. Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management. Volume 12, Issue 4, 2005: pp 329-350.
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/09699980510608802

 

Obonyo, E. A. ... et al. (2001). Specification and Procurement of Construction Products, Potential Role of Intelligent Agents, Mohammadian, M. and Stonier, R.J., International Conference on Intelligent Agents, Web Technologies and Internet Commerce (IAWTIC' 2001), Las Vegas, USA, pp. 268-279.

Obonyo, E. A. ... et al. (2001). Agent-based Support for Electronic Procurement in Construction, Artificial Intelligence in Construction and Structural Engineering, Anumba, C.J., Ugwu, O.O and Ren, Z., Loughborough University, UK, July 2001, pp 99-113.

Obonyo, E. A. ... et al. (2001). Specification and Procurement of Construction Product, Innovation in Architecture, Engineering and Construction, Anumba, C.J., Loughborough University, Millpress Science Publishers, Rotterdam, pp 131-138.

Obonyo, E.A., Anumba, C.J. and Thorpe, A. (2001). SOFTWARE AGENTS IN INTERNET-BASED SPECIFICATION AND PROCUREMENT OF CONSTRUCTION PRODUCTS. Innovation in Architecture, Engineering and Construction, Anumba, C.J., Loughborough University, Millpress Science Publishers, Rotterdam, pp 131-138.

Obonyo, E.A., Anumba, C.J. and Thorpe, A. (2002). Agent-Based Specification and Procurement of Construction Products, Advances in Building Technology, Elsevier, Advances in Building Technology, Hong Kong, December 2002, pp 1713-1720.

 

 

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+44 (0)1509 222623

The Centre Administrator
CICE
Loughborough University
Leicestershire
LE11 3TU

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