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Laing O'Rourke Centre for Construction Engineering and Technology

Methodology for quantifying the benefits of offsite construction

We are pleased to announce the launch of a new guidance report entitled 'Methodology for quantifying the benefits of offsite construction', the result of a CIRIA research project carried out by academics Prof. Cam Middleton and Tercia Jansen Van Vuuren at the Laing O’Rourke Centre for Construction Engineering and Technology, University of Cambridge, alongside a steering group representing 27 companies and organisations.

Offsite construction offers the potential to deliver a number of benefits including better quality construction, improved health and safety, a faster construction programme as well as predictability of cost and time on any given project. Despite this, uptake of offsite construction is slow as there is no industry method for assessing the benefits of offsite techniques.

This new CIRIA guide proposes a framework for comparing construction approaches, making it possible to keep consistent records across projects and identify all the possible benefits available. This guide also highlights the challenges that can be expected when assessing the performance of construction projects and developing robust benchmarks for comparison. It provides a framework for evaluating project performance that can be used by clients, construction management teams and designers to assess the value and benefits achieved on projects. The guidance is set to support decision making and facilitate wider industry collaboration across different sectors in the construction industry.

Professor Lord Robert Mair, Emeritus Sir Kirby Laing Professor of Civil Engineering and Director of Research at the University of Cambridge commented “There is compelling evidence for more widespread adoption of offsite manufacture in construction. Yet a methodology for quantifying its benefits is much needed. The process outlined in this excellent report provides an invaluable guide for industry professionals, such as contractors and project managers, as well as those who are influential in decision-making on construction projects, including clients, advisors and policy makers.”


JANSEN VAN VUUREN, T, MIDDLETON, C (2020) Methodology for quantifying the benefits of offsite construction, C792, CIRIA, London, UK (ISBN: 978-0-86017-897-2)
The guide is available to download freely from


CIRIA is pleased to have received funding support from:

  • Arup,
  • Autodesk,
  • BAM Nuttall,
  • Berkeley Modular,
  • Building Design Consultants,
  • Construction Leadership Council,
  • Costain,
  • Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy,
  • Enterprise Ireland,
  • Infrastructure Industry Innovation Partnership (I3P),
  • Kier,
  • Laing O’Rourke,
  • Meinhardt,
  • Polypipe,
  • Sir Robert McAlpine,
  • Willmott Dixon,
  • and significant in-kind contribution from the Laing O’Rourke Centre for Construction Engineering and Technology, the University of Cambridge.



If you would like to talk to the Laing O’Rourke Centre about the research content of the report, please contact Cara Parrett. 


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