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Think-tank will pick up Egan's baton

A GOVERNMENT-backed think tank of leading clients and contractors called Movement for Innovation in Construction is to be created to drive home the lessons of the forthcoming Egan review.

The MIC is one of the four key elements of the Construction Task Force, chaired by BAA chief executive Sir John Egan and due to reveal the findings of its investigation into industry efficiency today. It is expected that MIC will continue the task force's work.

Three other elements to emerge from the review are: a series of targets to set standards for improvement in key areas; a range of demonstration projects; and an industry knowledge centre to disseminate good practice.

The MIC will take a central role in promoting Egan-friendly initiatives such as customer focus, process integration, partnering, zero-defect construction, safety, product development and standardisation (NCE 11 June). Its membership will be drawn from the clients and contractors involved in the demonstration projects, although Egan's report will claim it is also open to any other firm displaying the same 'ethos'.

Its mission will be to provide 'commitment and leadership' in line with Egan's proposals. But it is not clear how this role will avoid conflict with the existing Construction Industry Board, set up in the wake of the 1994 Latham Report, the last review of the sector's efficiency.

Leading members of the MIC will be invited to sit on a supervisory board alongside government representatives to monitor the implementation of Egan's recommendations. A management board will control the group's activities. Day to day operation of the MIC will be run by the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, while four researchers will constitute the sharp end of the MIC's activities.

Alastair McLellan

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