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HOK aims for all design staff to be LEED accredited

by mel starrs on August 27, 2007

in LEED

::via Miles Walker at HOK Green BIM I found this interesting tidbit:

All new salaried hires are now expected to become (LEED) accredited within six months, with the long-term goal to have 100% of design professionals accredited. HOK has adopted a policy to apply LEED to every project and has fully integrated LEED into “The HOK Guidebook to Sustainable Design.”

This is an excellent move.  I would hope there is someone in the UK approaching BREEAM with the same focus, but I don’t know of anyone yet.

There are differences between the business model of LEED and BREEAM which are worth pointing out.  In particular, BREEAM is a ‘closed’ scheme – only the accredited and paid up can access the extranet to get the credit criteria.  In contrast, LEED is much more open.  There seems to be an understanding that information alone is not knowledge.  Information needs to be applied to context to turn it from words and numbers to something much more useful – knowledge.

This approach to intellectual property is something I have applauded in the past and it appears HOK are following suit too.  From their site (under resources and tools):

HOK made a decision in the early 1990s not to be proprietary about our sustainable information. We believe that it’s important to the industry, to our communities and to the planet to share what we’re doing. 

In my experience, sharing information with someone does not automatically mean that they ‘steal’ it from you and then fail to use you as a consultant in the future.  In general, most peope are far too busy doing their own job to try and take on yours as well.  In fact, by sharing information, you demonstrate your particular knowledge in a field and make it more likely that you will be used again in the future.  Well, this is my experience anyway.  Your own mileage may vary – any comments?