Digital Twin Uses Classification System for Urban Planning & Infrastructure Program Management

Ramy Elsehrawy, Bimal Kumar, Richard Watson

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Failure of traditional project management concepts and methods to cope with the increasing complexity, spatial and temporal scales of projects, has led to emergence of the distinct discipline of Program Management (PgM). Armed with a holistic approach and awareness of interdependencies, commonalities and synergies between projects, PgM attempts to better integrate between strategic intents and the outcomes of projects, and to realize benefits that cannot be obtained from managing these projects separately. On the other hand, the evolving concept of 'Digital Twin' has been recently gaining ground in the (AECO) sector. The idea of a National Digital Twin (NDT) in the UK is promising enormous value out of openness and sharing of city infrastructure data, which can heavily support the understanding of interdependences between infrastructure sectors and breakdown silos between the various urban systems. The mutual systemic thinking underlying both-discipline of PgM and idea of NDT-paves the way for the latter to heavily support the former in advancing, maturing and attaining the goals it is adopted for, through a diverse range of uses throughout a program's lifecycle. However, the 'DT uses' demonstrated amongst literature are ad-hoc, tailored to the particular case at hand and customized merely to suit the local and individual needs of each study; thus, hindering the transfer or reuse of knowledge created by one case to another. Therefore, this paper seeks to formulate a seed for a DT Uses Classification System [DTUCS] within the field of urban and city infrastructure PgM. DTUCS is built through a simplified ontology development methodology along with analysis of the DT uses identified in relevant literature. It provides an initial step toward the establishment of a common, standardized structure, language and terminology that can be harnessed to precisely communicate the exact purpose and context of a DT usage in an urban program and DT procurement processes. The aim is to help promote the knowledge about the uses of DT generated by any case or project-including our ongoing studies and future research-to public knowledge rather than local or ad-hoc ones, in order to maximize its application to other studies and contexts.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020
Event20th CONVR 2020 International Conference Construction Applications of VR - Teesside University, Middlesborough, United Kingdom
Duration: 30 Sept 20202 Oct 2020
Conference number: 20


Conference20th CONVR 2020 International Conference Construction Applications of VR
Abbreviated titleCONVR2020
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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