43. Product Development Diagram

44. Information Management Cycle


Information Management Cycle v0.3 (Full-size Image)

This high-level conceptual model describes the Information Management Cycles that Structured Project Information pass through [1]. Each Cycle includes three Information Management States, separated by varied Information Management Activities conducted by specialised Information Management Actors:

Information Management States

The three states describe how Structured Project Information can be experienced as either:

[A] Information Requirements: project specifications, protocols or similar that identify what needs to be generated by project stakeholders. Information Requirements can be represented as a set of Document Uses, Model Uses and Data Uses.

[B] Digital Deliverables: digital simulations of physical objects and how/when they’ll be constructed or fabricated. Digital Deliverables can either be documents (in digital format -e.g. CAD drawings or a PDF furniture lists), models and/or data sets.

[C] Physical Assets: information embodied within real world objects similar to whole facilities, a building, mechanical system, heating unit, or a single pump.

Information Management Activities

The transitions between these Information Management States are represented as either forward or reverse activities. Forward Cycle Activities refer to the actions executed to cross from one state to the next; while Reverse Cycle Activities refer to the measurements made to examine one state against its preceding one. Sample activities [2] are provided below:

  • Forward Execution Activities from [A] to [B]: the activities typically conducted during a project’s Design Phase which includes the planning and specifications sub-phases (e.g. drafting, drawing, detailing, and modelling); and
  • Reverse Measurement Activities from [B] to [A]: the activities necessary to verify or validate digital deliverables against information requirements (e.g. checking floor areas in a BIModel against a client’s spatial requirements).
  • Forward Execution Activities from [B] to [C]: all the activities typically conducted during the Construction Phase which includes construction planning and commissioning (e.g. laying floors, mounting ceilings, and painting walls); and
  • Reverse Measurement Activities from [C] to [B]: the activities necessary to test and confirm physical outputs against digital deliverables (e.g. checking the placement of duct hangers on site against relevant models or mechanical shop drawings).
  • Forward Execution Activities from [C] to [A]: all the activities typically conducted during the Operation Phase which includes management, maintenance and decommissioning (e.g. cleaning rooms, repairing down-pipes, replacing roof tiles); and
  • Reverse Measurement Activities from [A] to [C]: the activities necessary to capture data pertaining to a physical asset or to monitor the performance of a physical system (e.g. data capture through laser scanning and data monitoring through sensors).

Information Management Actors

The Information Management Activities separating Information Management States are conducted by actors which are either humans and/or computers. There are three main actors who operate throughout the Information Management Cycle:

  • Design Information Management Actors: executing the transition from Information Requirements to Digital Deliverables and measuring (e.g. verifying or validating) how well Digital Deliverables match with Information Requirements;
  • Construction Information Management Actors: executing the transition from Digital Deliverables to Physical Assets and measuring (e.g. testing or confirming) how well Physical Assets match with Digital Deliverables; and
  • Operation Information Management Actors: executing actions applied to Physical Assets (e.g. operating, maintaining and decommissioning). Also these actors can either (a) measure - e.g. capture or monitor - how well a Physical Asset matches with the Information Requirements covering the asset (within the same Information Management Cycle), or (b) measure one or more Physical Assets in order to generate new Information Requirements within a new Information Management Cycle.

Actors may overlap and replace each other. Depending on the current state of technologies, processes and policies within a market, two or even one Information Management Actor may be able to complete all execution and measurement activities across an Information Management Cycle [3].



The following colleagues have provided improvement suggestions to an earlier version of this model: AProf. Sheryl Staub-French, AProf. Julie Jupp, Ms. Marzia Bolpagni, and Mr. Victor Roig Segura. Thank you to all.



[1] Each Information Management Cycle has a nominal start (e.g. information covering the design of a new physical asset) and a nominal end (e.g. information decimated through the demolition of an asset). However, it is possible and even probable that the same information would persist over a number of Cycles (e.g. through iterative renovation of the same physical asset).

[2] Activities are a subset of ‘Relations’ within the Conceptual BIM Ontology.

[3] This model is part of the BIMe Initiative Integrated Information Platform project