Building Material Scout: Easy access to healthy and sustainable materials

Sustainable building involves a variety of product information, building certificates and material declarations. This can make it difficult for builders, planners and product manufacturers to maintain an overview of the requirements.

Building Material Scout solves this challenge by making the required information easier to obtain through a digital platform.

The introduction of building certification systems like DGNB, LEED and BREEAM has been a great step forward in terms of documenting and assessing the sustainability of building materials. Nevertheless, as the certification jungle grows, it becomes increasingly difficult for everyone involved to keep track of product information and certification requirements. Often, the information is either not available in a suitable form for architects and planners, or the products simply do not fulfill the requirements.

Building Material Scout aims to change this. It is a planning tool with an integrated and intelligent building product database with a focus on healthy and sustainable materials. Builders, architects, planners and construction companies can use Building Material Scout as a counseling tool for selecting appropriate products. The tool can document an entire construction project with all the product information of the current building sustainability certification systems.

At the same time, manufacturers of building products like Troldtekt can add their product information to Building Material Scout. Product requests from builders can then be diverted directly to the manufacturer, who can use an assessment service to automatically validate the products to the current sustainability standards.

– Our mission is to provide all stakeholders involved in construction with easy access to healthy, intelligent and sustainable materials and building products. We are convinced that by doing so, we are making a significant contribution to a better construction quality with healthier and environmentally friendly spaces for people, says Melanie Leich, DGNB consultant at Building Material Scout GmbH.

A comprehensive solution for the entire industry

Faced with the complex product requirements in a variety of construction projects, Building Material Scout recognized that the construction industry is striving to tackle the major challenges in the circular economy. Only a comprehensive solution for the entire building industry can help all actors in the industry to build as healthy and sustainable buildings as possible.

– In the short term, our goal is to facilitate further construction projects for all those involved. Through our work with all actors we build a large information base and the knowledge of sustainable building materials and structures and make them available to the market, says Melanie Leich and continues:

– In the long term, we want to utilize these tools and help them precisely define the requirements for sustainable building products. No one can say whether a product is sustainable or not. It always depends on what sustainability goals you are pursuing and where to find the product application. Our vision is to integrate a product filter so that all parties involved can find their desired products according to their target requirements.


Keeps up with certification updates

Building Material Scout also makes it easier to keep up with new developments by including automatic updates as soon as new assessments and certification versions are introduced. Furthermore, building product manufacturers can automatically provide their data to the Building Material Scout through an interface to the Product Information Management Systems (PIM) and keep it up to date, without further effort. This spares a double data path.

Based on partnerships

Two distinguished companies from the building industry are part of Building Material Scout GmbH: Drees & Sommer and HOINKA GmbH. Furthermore, EPEA GmbH (part of Drees & Sommer) is associated as a cooperative partner.

  • As an internationally sophisticated planning and consulting company, Drees & Sommer has been actively pursuing the biggest trends in the construction and real estate industry – digitalization and sustainable construction – for years. With the development of the Building Material Scout, Drees & Sommer brings these two themes together optimally. Through its experience in over 3,000 ongoing construction projects, the company also provides a substantial contribution, to develop a practice-oriented platform that offers all the building owners added value.
  • HOINKA specializes in deliveries around sustainable building (Green Building). As an experienced DGNB auditor, LEED AP and BREEAM assessor, HOINKA leads Green Building certifications. In addition, HOINKA offers web-based software tools and building product databases.
  • EPEA is well-known as an international research and consultancy institute for environmentally friendly products and processes. EPEA operates the Cradle to Cradle concept, and their experts advise on material health and solutions for the Circular Economy. EPEA applies, develops or optimizes knowledge from chemistry, biology and environmental science.

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