What to watch out for in 2018: a preview of forthcoming PAS

It’s no overstatement to say that standards and specifications shape the way we live and the world that surrounds us. The subject matter of specifications can reveal important trends and indicate the direction of change.

What are the most interesting Publicly Available Specifications (PASs) set to be published in 2018? Here is a list of this year's hottest topics.

1. Smart Cities

PAS 185:2017 was published in late 2017 and is one of a series of PASs helping to pave the way for a generation of groundbreaking smart cities. This specification helps to address one of the major concerns that people have about smart cities: security. As cybersecurity incidents increasingly dominate the headlines, how can smart cities enjoy the benefits of technological progress without being exposed to unacceptable risk?

Security was once in danger of being an add-on topic, but it is now firmly hardwired into thinking on standards from the outset. PAS 185 sets out requirements for establishing a framework for the security-minded management of smart cities and their infrastructure. It explains how data, information and services can be used securely in the delivery of services and outlines methods for identifying security threats to data information, physical infrastructure and systems that might affect inhabitants and visitors of the smart city.

PAS 185 links up with other specifications and models for the creation and management of smart cities, such as PAS 180:2014, on smart city vocabulary; PAS 181:2014, on the smart city framework; BS ISO/IEC 30182:2017, on the smart city concept model; PAS 183:2017, a guide to establishing a model for sharing data and information services; and PAS 184:2017, on developing project proposals.

PAS 185 is also designed to be consistent with PAS 1192-5:2015 regarding security-minded management of building information modelling (BIM).

2. Corrective Actions

Product recalls involve warning consumers about products that are in the market and are subsequently found to be potentially unsafe. The corrective actions usually involve publicity such as posters placed in retail sites informing consumers of the recall, but until now there has been no standard approach to identifying best practice in this area.

The lack of a standardized approach means that some consumers will continue to use products that have been found to be potentially unsafe. In worst-case scenarios, this can result in injury, death or damage to property.

PAS 7100 sets out good practice for monitoring, assessing, notifying of and correcting unsafe products. The PAS puts emphasis on developing a corrective action plan in advance of actual need, in order to ensure that recalls are as efficient as possible. The PAS also provides regulators with guidance on the assistance that should be available for businesses to meet their responsibilities.

The new PAS has government backing, with sponsorship from the Regulatory Delivery directorate of the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS). The steering group also featured consumer representatives to ensure that the resulting PAS prioritizes the interests of consumers.

3. BIM information management

This year will see a series of new or updated specifications in the PAS 1192 series on building information modelling (BIM).

In late January PAS 1192-6 will be published. This is an important document aimed at improving health and safety performance in the construction sector. The specification offers guidance on how to share structured health and safety information throughout project and asset life cycles. The goal is not only to reduce risk but also to reduce construction and operational costs and to mitigate inherent risks and hazards across the asset life cycle.

In spring 2018 updated versions of PAS 1192-2:2013 and PAS 1192-3:2014 will be published. PAS 1192-2 provides a specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using BIM. PAS 1192-3 provides a specification for information management during the operational phase of assets using BIM.

The rapid adoption of BIM methodology in the construction industry has led to improvements in cooperative working, cost reduction and efficiency. These new and updated additions to the PAS 1192 suite will help to drive this improvement yet further.