Olympic gold medallist is keynote speaker at Digital Construction Live

Launching the Digital Construction Live virtual conference, taking place on September 10, are TV presenter and former BBC journalist Sarah Travers (centre) with the event's co-founders Melanie Dawson and Sarah Weir. Picture: Kelvin Boyes/Press Eye

OLYMPIC gold medallist turned performance expert Ben Hunt-Davis MBE will be keynote speaker at a major conference next month which brings together thought leaders in the built environment from across the UK and Ireland to discuss hot topics in technology and digital working.

The Digital Construction Live 2021 conference, taking place virtually on September 10 and hosted from Belfast by TV presenter and former BBC journalist Sarah Travers, will see the former GB rower share insights into how businesses can use process and innovation as a winning strategy.

Hunt-Davis will share the strategies he and his rowing team used in the two years leading up to the 2000 Sydney Olympics and how the GB men's eights changed as a crew from being a regularly seventh placed boat to a winning one, and he'll show how those lessons can translate to the business environment.

The event (details at has been jointly organised by Sarah Weir, director of Weir Events, and digital construction expert Melanie Dawson, director of Origin7, which helps clients operating in the built environment implement digital processes and technologies to become more efficient.

Melanie has recently been appointed as the lead of the Technology Working Group of the UK-wide 'Get it Right' initiative, which represents construction industry experts, organisations and businesses working to improve productivity, quality, sustainability and safety in the construction sector.

She says the construction industry has never been more ready for a digital shift, adding: “The impact of Covid on working practices has fast-tracked technology adoption and digital working and helped chip away at what has until now been the biggest barrier to adoption – understanding return on investment and how the technology helps achieve better outcomes.

“People have been forced to use video meetings and other digital communication solutions, and have found that, not only are these not as complicated as they thought, but they are also better value for money, reduce carbon footprints, and are more efficient.”

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