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Digital Transformation in Architecture

This RIBA/Microsoft report captures a moment in the architectural profession’s ‘digital transformation journey’. It explores the benefits and challenges of the innovative technologies that are changing the way in which architects work.

In this report, produced by RIBA and Microsoft, we highlight the technologies being adopted – how these are changing the way that projects are run and the internal workings of architectural practices. We look at which technologies are likely to be significant as the industry continues to go through rapid change. We uncover the benefits that this change brings to practices, and also the challenges that need to be overcome. We provide examples of how digital technologies can improve client outcomes and create better buildings, and we try to give a sense of the potential effects of digital transformation on wider society.

The report is structured around a series of themes that emerged from the research, and that also reflect construction industry and societal opportunities and challenges.

Digital transformation

We look at what this means in architecture and where practices are on their ‘journey’, including the key benefits and challenges of digital transformation.


The technologies that are transforming architecture now and those that are likely to continue the evolution in the next few years.


How the adoption of digital ways of working, like BIM, is improving the productivity and efficiency of projects and architectural practices.


As well as BIM, how mixed, augmented and virtual reality technologies are improving the client experience, and aiding collaboration across projects and within organisations.


The importance of having the right culture to enable digital transformation and some of those characteristics.

Looking ahead

Implications for the next wave of digital transformation, the technologies that will be important, the opportunities for architectural practices and the challenges to overcome.

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