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The impact of proptech on real estate industry growth

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The real estate industry is currently undergoing a digital transformation that not only changes its nature in terms of the markets and work environments, but is also influencing its growth. What are the main trends and concerns related to this transformation? To what extent is the real estate industry already prepared for this? This paper reviews the situation in terms of the emergence of a phenomenon known as PropTech. PropTech is characterized by the massive implementation of emerging technology such as home matching tools, drones, virtual reality, building information modelling (BIM), data analytics tools, artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain, smart contracts, crowdfunding in the real estate sector, fintechs related to real estate, smart cities, regions, smart homes and shared economy. This survey of changes in the real estate industry due to PropTech covers four areas: (1) PropTech applications in the real estate industry; (2) implications of PropTech for real estate market transparency; (3) how PropTech could give a region or a company a competitive advantage; and (4) concerns on the wider implications of these changes on a labour market and education. In a plausible scenario, changing the real estate technologies could change system dynamics and improve real estate market transparency. Moreover, it can be asserted that, in a broader sense, PropTech is beneficial for territorial competition and territorial growth strategies. And lastly, under different institutional arrangements, PropTech can affect the changing structure of the real estate market, the dema
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IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering
The impact of proptech on real estate industry growth
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IOP Conf. Series: Materials Science and Engineering 869 (2020) 062041
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The impact of proptech on real estate industry growth
Nikolai Siniak1, Tom Kauko 2, Sergey Shavrov3 and Ninoslav Marina4
1University of Information Science and Technology "St. Paul the Apostle", Faculty of
communication network and security, Partizanska bb, Ohrid, 6000, R. Macedonia, e-
2Independent scholar, Budapest, Hungary, e-mail:
3Belarussian State Technological University, production organisation and real estate
economics department, 220006, Minsk, 13a, Sverdlova str, Republic of Belarus, e-
4University of Information Science and Technology "St. Paul the Apostle", Faculty of
communication network and security, Partizanska bb, Ohrid, 6000, R. Macedonia, e-
Abstract. The real estate industry is currently undergoing a digital transformation that not only
changes its nature in terms of the markets and work environments, but is also influencing its
growth. What are the main trends and concerns related to this transformation? To what extent
is the real estate industry already prepared for this? This paper reviews the situation in terms of
the emergence of a phenomenon known as PropTech. PropTech is characterized by the
massive implementation of emerging technology such as home matching tools, drones, virtual
reality, building information modelling (BIM), data analytics tools, artificial intelligence (AI),
Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain, smart contracts, crowdfunding in the real estate
sector, fintechs related to real estate, smart cities, regions, smart homes and shared economy.
This survey of changes in the real estate industry due to PropTech covers four areas: (1)
PropTech applications in the real estate industry; (2) implications of PropTech for real estate
market transparency; (3) how PropTech could give a region or a company a competitive
advantage; and (4) concerns on the wider implications of these changes on a labour market and
education. In a plausible scenario, changing the real estate technologies could change system
dynamics and improve real estate market transparency. Moreover, it can be asserted that, in a
broader sense, PropTech is beneficial for territorial competition and territorial growth
strategies. And lastly, under different institutional arrangements, PropTech can affect the
changing structure of the real estate market, the demand for hi-tech, new skills as well as
emerging policy challenges for the real estate industry.
1. Introduction
Real estate and construction are important sectors in the economy. They both employ large amounts of
capital and significant proportions of the workforce. Furthermore, together with other fields such as
health, transportation, trade, agriculture, and so forth, real estate and construction have been targets of
digital transformation. In the era of smart sustainable development and growth [
], companies are
interested in solutions that allow their processes, machines, employees, and even the products and
services themselves, to be integrated into a single integrated network for data collection, data analysis,
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the evaluation of company development, and performance improvement. Staying smart, sustainable
and inclusive in today‟s global business environment requires continuous improvement in
productivity, quality, agility, and service levels [
]. Apart from the obvious benefits for firms, benefits
from this turn also accrue to territorial governance, notably city management.
PropTech is defined as massive implementation of emerging technology within the real estate
sector. A non-exhaustive list of such technologies include home matching tools, drones, virtual reality,
building information modelling (BIM), data analytics tools, artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of
Things (IoT) and blockchain, smart contracts, crowdfunding in the real estate sector, financial
technologies (fintechs) related to real estate, smart cities and regions, smart homes, and shared
economy. All these relatively recent innovations have the potential to improve productivity and
competitiveness, increase energy and resource efficiency and effectiveness and hence to protect the
environment and provide opportunities for developed and developing countries to achieve economic
growth and sustainable development in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development [
Property is at the heart of a smart territory and it is time for the real estate industry to take a leading
role. Moreover, it is likely that also territorial competition and territorial growth would benefit from
the implementation of PropTech solutions.
The concept of «PropTech 3.0: future real estate" was developed in 2017 at the Oxford
University School of business, the United Kingdom [
]. Subsequently, PropTech became part of the
digital transformation of the real estate industry, in terms of leading the market and promoting a
radically new approach to the acquisition, operation and management of the real estate. PropTech is
furthermore a collective term used for the determination of start-ups that offer technologically
innovative products and new business models for the real estate markets. PropTech means any
application in the real estate sector, be it 3D visualizing, home matching tools, crowdfunding, fintechs,
shared economy, smart cities, smart homes, AI, smart contracts or BIM. PropTech is still and a new
trend, the scale of which will grow up over the time. Therefore, currently PropTech is developing in
several areas: the real estate market as its own (PropTech in the narrowest sense), smart cities and
buildings, the sharing economy, the construction industry (i.e. ConTech) and finance (thus, fintechs).
The remainder of our review discusses first the major features of PropTech in itself (although,
in this context, understood in a broader sense than merely boundaries of a given plot or building).
After that we review the current development trends, and the main opportunities and challenges of
PropTech through the prism of the real estate sector. In doing so, we focus here on three kinds of
implications: (1) market transparency; (2) territorial competition and (3) workplace environment.
Lastly we note a number of conclusions based on these issues.
2. PropTech in real estate and digital transformation.
Realistically, few businesses can escape the digital transformation taking place across the global
economy, and the real estate sector is no exception. Real estate companies are already using PropTech
to improve customer experiences, boost sales and increase operational efficiencies. Yet many real
estate firms have been slow to keep up with adopting new tools and technologies to transform their
companies. The following list identifies examples of what real estate companies can do to embrace
digital transformation for long-term success [
Use of rich media visualization to improve customer experiences.
Collect property data with IOT devices.
Embrace BIM.
Employ AI-powered data analytics for transformative insights.
Streamline workflows with digital image classification and similar procedures.
World Economic Forum classified the PropTech sector into three major categories [
PropTech 1.0: Growth of online listing sites back in 2007.
PropTech 2.0: Use of data analytics and virtual reality to offer better and more
specialised services for customers.
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PropTech 3.0: Experimentation with emerging technology such as drones, virtual
reality tools, IoT and blockchain which are observing in recent days.
Nowadays almost 50 countries have created national communities (PropTechRussia, Austrian
PropTechInitiative, PropTechBelgium, SwissPropTech, PropTechDach, PropTechSpain,
UKPropTechAssociation, PropTechAsia, ProTechBaltic, PropTechNL, NordicPropTechInitiative and
so forth), and these have already been united in a single network. Furthermore, the PropTech
community has a number of interesting features. It is organized exclusively by business and for
business. The community generates B2B services without any government involvement. What is the
unusual, they include companies from various fields: investors (i.e. institutional and private equity
funds, banks and financial groups, venture capital funds, business angels), real estate market
participants (i.e. rights holders property developers, builders, consulting and brokerage companies,
valuers, management and insurance companies), and technological IT companies (i.e. suppliers of IT
-solutions, integrators, aggregators , developers of specialized cloud and mobile applications), and
start-ups (i.e. developers of technology products and solutions in the field of real estate). The
community systematically holds international symposiums, seminars, and competitions that influence
the generation of new projects.
A certain methodology to identify unoccupied PropTech niches already exists, in order to
initiate start-up projects in them. Throughout this purpose, national maps of fintechs and PropTech are
developed. They are designed to get an idea of which ICT tools in the country's real estate market are
well developed, which are bad, and which are not developed at all. The map is based on open sources,
includes information about the PropTech community, about IT companies, their projects in the
problem areas of PropTech, about PropTech-developments, about PropTech-projects of banks, about
developers, about real estate managers, and about other real estate market participants. The market
map of PropTech (Market Map) gives the most complete picture in which the parameters of the market
have a visible development, about the potential and the level of competition.
Market map has an information about all market players consolidated and classified by a certain
attribute: competitors, intermediaries and sellers. The map certainly includes an image in the form of
the layout of the logos of its participants. The classification of participants depends on their position in
the global and national markets and their role in marketing activities. The map shows how the
company‟s roles in market distribution and allows to evaluate the place of individual firms compared
to competitors. The creation of such a map is considered today as the final stage of marketing research
on the real estate market.
Categories of IT -platform PropTech, proposed by Oxford University, are divided into 12 types
]: 1. Property Management.
2. Construction Management.
3. Facility Management.
4. Portfolio Management
5. Home Services
6. Commercial Real Estate Search.
7 Long-Term Rentals / Sale Search.
8 Short-Term Rental / Vacation Search
9 Life, Home, Property & Casualty
10. Real Estate Agent Tools
11. Indoor Mapping
12. The IoT Home
Some other community members classify PropTech's IT-platforms into the following categories [
1. Listing and search
2. Marketplace
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3. Broker-free List and Search
4. Investment/Crowdfunding/CrowdLending
5. Data, Valuation and Analytics
6. Mortgage Tech
7. Property/Building Management
8. Leasing Management Software
9. Real& Virtual Viewing (3D/VR/AR/Photo)
10. Tech-enabled Brokerage
11. Agent Matching
12. O-2-O Services
13. Smart Building & IoT
14. Smart City
15. ConTech/BIM
16. Sales and marketing
17. PropTech Associations
18. PropTech Startup Accelerator
19. Others
Start-up projects and PropTech Startup Accelerators are the most important in this PropTech concept.
Their numbers have been increased significantly every year. Examles of start-up projects and their
structures can be found based on the information we collected in the contet of a competition known as
PropTechRiga2019 [
]. As shown in Table 1, the largest number (five) out of 15 start-ups belong to
the class of Portfolio Management, which accounted for 33% of all applications.
Table 1. Structure of start-up projects at the PropTechRiga2019 competition
Name of a start-up project
The company, the
1. Construction processes synchronization
platform based on BIM
BIMSynch (Latvia)
2. A platform for property managing and
ODN (Russia)
3. A corporate platform for day-to-day
construction management
OROCON (Latvia)
4. Office Management Platform
Pingin (Lithuania)
5. Business Process Platform for Return
Profitus (Lithuania)
6. Smart Contract Real Estate Transaction
Automation Platform
SmartLaws (Latvia),
Agent House (United
7. SaaS Platform for Sales Synchronization and
Tendering services for a variety of companies
and suppliers
FIXtender (Latvia),
8. Analytical GIS platform with many B2B
Einpix (Lithuania)
9. Cloud portfolio platform for home developers
REALPAD Software
(Czech Republic)
10. Blockchain platform for cross-border housing
Velvet (Estonia)
11. Real Estate Portfolio Platform supported by
Realtors and Crowdfunding
Reinvest24 (Estonia)
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12. Digital Commercial Real Estate Operator
R8tech (Estonia)
13. Software complex to support the financing of
ongoing projects
14. Cloud SaaS Urban Development Platform
Immovativ GmbH
15. The cloud-based long-term business
management platform
Bidrento (Estonia)
16. SaaS Asset Management Platform with
Increased Energy Efficiency
SmartVent (Estonia),
Apart from the entries listed for this competition, we also note that, in Belarus, two interesting start-up
projects can be distinguished. These were carried out on the roadmap of the Companies Union of
Realtor Activities Reengineering, namely:
(1) a project to integrate the Real Estate Agent Tools class platform with the E-government
(2) a cooperation between Russia and Belarus on projecting the property management class
for transferring joint homeownership management to a single IT platform.
Analysis of PropTech solutions, including those submitted for the PropTechRiga2019 competition
shows that the business models of all the submitted start-up projects are global. Therefore, they are
designed for users of the whole world, or Europe, or several regions, but not for a single country. As
the allocation of venture capital funding by an increasing band of global investors is deployed to
uncovering and developing the digital innovation of the future, traditional operators will come under
increasing pressure to adapt or perish. One of the features of this „survival game‟ undoubtedly pertains
to the way market information is made accessible and maintained for any user or investor category
dealing with real estate.
3. PropTech and real estate market transparency
Real estate market transparency entails the incorporation of the objectives of smart sustainable
development and growth into industry and government operational practices and plays a crucial role in
a city‟s success. It enables governments and public bodies to function effectively, providing long-run
benefits to local communities and the environment. It also helps in creating a more competitive and
flexible environment for investments and businesses, as well as contributing to improvements in
quality of life for citizens. Without high levels of transparency, real estate markets cannot work
efficiently. Four key issues, with significant implications for transparency, stand out here:
The emergence of the PropTech sector, as new technologies are adopted by the industry.
The rise of flexible office space, as major disruptors change real estate market dynamics.
The spotlight on beneficial ownership and anti-money laundering, as public debates around
corruption, tax evasion and ownership continue to make headlines.
The maturing of the „alternatives‟ sector, as it goes mainstream and investors demand higher
The first item is one of the most important. In this new age, digital technology has already become the
defining transformational force. It has rapidly become an umbrella concept for the central new drivers
of productivity growth, innovation and the diffusion of knowledge on a global scale. Those who
embrace digital technologies as the central transformational force of this new age are likely to prosper.
While digital transformation has disrupted almost every type of business, the real estate industry has
been traditionally slow to move with the times. Why is it so? Reasons have to do with speculation,
when better yields and profits can be extracted without innovating; another reason is conservative
attitudes. We must remember that we are dealing with a particularly durable good. In general, we can
refer to a rather constrained decision making setting of any real estate sector or subfield. [
In areas ranging from computer-aided design to development of new construction materials and
technologies, to the use of augmented-reality marketing solutions, a long list of innovative new
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technologies is starting to gain traction, with potentially profound consequences for the real estate and
construction industry. It will help to increase the input of the real estate sector in GDP and provide
sector‟s growth and transparency. PropTech is well placed to make the markets more transparent, in as
much as we believe in the diffusion of the technology across market areas and segments. This is
because the increasing accessibility of new technologies enables us to overcome the friction of space
that would otherwise lead to spatial arbitrage conditions. In other words, information spread and
removal of barriers of trade are realistic consequences of technological breakthrough in general and
with PropTech concepts in particular.
Whenever possible, these predictions need to be grounded in empirical realities. The Global
Real Estate Transparency Index and methods are used for such transparency assessment. According to
this source, real estate markets in most European countries can be considered transparent [
]. This
means that transactions are fast and secured, government behaviour in tax and legal spheres is
predictable and regulators fully disclose financial information. European part of the rating is headed
by Britain, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Ireland, Sweden and Finland.
At the same time, Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) experts found problems that affected Central and
Eastern European markets [
]. The saddest situation in Europe is in Russia (38), Slovenia (46),
Serbia (47), Bulgaria (49), Ukraine (69) and Belarus (88). In the newly released biannual Global Real
Estate Transparency Index (GRETI) 2018 by JLL, Belarus is ranked 88th, an improvement from the
2016 edition of the Index where the country was ranked 100th from 108th countries. JLL has been
tracking the transparency of the global real estate market for 20 years and today. Belarusian real estate
market is considered as an opaque all these years the only European country and the only from CIS
countries in 2018. Kazakhstan and Mongolia accompanied Belarus in 2014 ranking as an opaque
market. However, in 2016 and 2018 Kazakhstan are considered as a Low Transparency market but not
an opaque. Jamaica and Mongolia were withdrawn from JLL Global Real Estate Transparency Index
The world's largest emerging economies are concentrated on the cusp of Transparent status.
Accounting for almost 50% of global population, these Big 8 markets (Brazil, China, India,
Indonesia, Mexico, Russia, Thailand and Turkey) present enormous real estate opportunities that are
currently restricted by a lack of transparency. While many of these countries continue to make
improvements, further regulatory reforms and, crucially, stronger enforcement will be needed to
push these markets into the „Transparent‟ tier.
Now let‟s describe what the Global Real Estate Transparency Index is and what kind of
indicators contribute to the final results. The Global Real Estate Transparency Index is based on a
combination of quantitative market data and survey results across 100 countries and 158 city markets.
186 individual measures are divided into 14 topic areas, which are then grouped and weighted into six
broad sub-indices (i.e. blocks): (1) performance measurement 28.5%; (2) market fundamentals 16.5%;
(3) and governance of listed vehicles 10%, (4) regulatory and legal frameworks 25%; (5) transaction
process 15%; and (6) environmental sustainability 5%.
In the first sub-index (i.e. block), efficiency and effectiveness indicators are estimated. These
are the price indices for real estate, the share of institutional investors in the market, independence and
quality of the evaluation activities of foreign companies and so forth. The second block includes
market fundamentals: the presence and duration of time scales, reflecting different quantitative data
such as rent, yield, and occupancy (load), in different types of properties and similar data. The third
block comprises a review of financial regulators how often the market reports are published, how
detailed they are, whether the English versions are available. The fourth block deals with the laws of is
published all information about real estate registration and taxes. The fifth block is devoted to the
transaction process: whether the complete presale information is available, how transparent are the
auctions and how honest are realtors. The sixth block pertains to environmental sustainability
assessment. Transparency index is calculated every two years.
The Global Real Estate Transparency Index scores markets on a scale of 1 to 5 (with 1.00 being
the highest possible score). Depending on their overall performance, markets are assigned to one of
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five transparency tiers. The criteria are qualitative or subjective and these are calculated on the basis
of the experts' responses on a scale from 1 (highly transparent) to 5 (opaque).
In 2018 the demand for higher transparency was stronger than ever, as investors continued to
increase their allocations to the sector, public debates around property ownership continued and the
industry grapples with significant structural changes. Over the past two decades, the Global Real
Estate Transparency Index has become established as the leading industry benchmark for assessing
market transparency. Now in its tenth iteration, it continues to guide the sector towards higher
standards. The survey also reveals that the landscape of transparency is shifting, with new issues
emerging on the horizon as the real estate Sector undergoes unprecedented structural change.
Another Real Estate Environmental Sustainability (REES) Transparency Index is based on a
survey completed by JLL Energy and Sustainability Services experts in every 100 countries. Canada
has joined France, Australia, Japan and the UK in the „Highly Transparent‟ group in 2018, while
Belarus has still sheared the „Opaque‟ group with Kazakhstan, Uruguay, Kuwait, Panama, Ukraine
and others. Low REES Transparency has Slovenia, Turkey, Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary, Saudi Arabia,
Egypt, Iran, Lebanon and some other countries.
To sum up the discussion above, real estate transparency and environmental sustainability
market transparency entails the incorporation of the objectives of smart sustainable development and
growth, digital and investment performance, into the operational practices of government and
industries. Now a new question can be raised about the territorial dimension of these practices. Could
it be that the benefits of real estate market transparency can be seen at an intermediate level, so
between the individual spaces of the real estate occupancy and a whole country? This is the topic of
our next discussion.
4. PropTech oriented strategies of territorial competition for economic growth [
Territorial competition in the New Economy comprises a variety of strategies, both direct and indirect
ones. The most common direct strategies are in essence traditional, digital, or cultural, derived from an
interdisciplinary perspective (urban geography, economic geography and
urban economics, at least). The indirect strategies, in turn, focus on the territorial economic growth
possibilities offered by particular industries, and herein lies the added value of PropTech. Namely,
how land and buildings are situated in the reuse and restructuring process of cities involves digital
transformation issues of both business and policy relevance. Even in ICT based economies, the
headquarters and homes of workers require tasks of valuation and physical design. Following the
principle of property market process by D‟Arcy & Keogh (1998), the markets for land and buildings
are both a precondition to economic growth and a consequence of growth [
]. In this field, research
and development is aimed at a transformation towards green, socially and economically sustainable
economies using innovations in construction and real estate sector.
So according to the overall argument by D‟Arcy & Keogh, the property market can indeed
influence a city‟s competitiveness by fulfilling preconditions for growth, and then signalling the
actualized growth. This entails a feedback process between the two functions above: first, company
headquarters need affordable high class office space, and the property market has the responsibility to
cater for it; then, the functioning of the property market, in itself, indicates economic performance (see
also van der Krabben & Lambooy, 1993; D‟Arcy & Keogh, 1997) [
When deliberating the digitalization in n real estate context, the smart city approach can be seen
as a real estate development principle where cutting edge technology is utilized to the maximum
extent for the modernization of the urban realm. However, here a sharp divide exists between the
proponents and critics of the smart city concept, as for example Valdez and colleagues (2018) note
]. Here we approach the debate through an intermediate position.
According to Turok (2004), a broader economic and policy perspective to urban development
and city-regional competitiveness is required than mere reliance on the contemporary perspective
based on business clusters and networks [
]. On the other hand, traditional economic policies remain
important as PropTech based competitiveness strategies are more difficult to aim at [
]. So strategies
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vary as many different development models exist and trajectories emerge spontaneously in space, as
Boschma (2004) has argued [
]. In this vein, cities are seen as differentiated products, and this
differentiation defines their economic relevance. We also note the increasing use of images for city
marketing, akin to corresponding product marketing strategies. This can be verified by comparing
architectural and design solutions of big cities, as observed by Pompe and Temeljotov Salaj (2014)
]. With the territorial benefits and opportunities generated by PropTech in mind, we move to the
workplace and educational side of this concept next.
5. PropTech and workforce and education.
So PropTech is the profound transformation of business and organizational activities, processes,
competencies and models. Those who thrive in the PropTech will need to develop and execute a vision
for digital transformation take an ecosystem-first approach to delivering products and services,
manage information effectively, optimize business processes for speed, efficiency, quality, and agility,
create flexible and reliable human resource model.
Three types of impact on the labour market are obvious: (1) the labour market is shrinking, (2)
the labour market is not changing, but is improving, (3) new niches are emerging in the labour market.
As the tendency of ICT industry is to concentrate, all such development is not necessarily positive.
Practical examples, such as Airbnb, WeWork and Amazon demonstrate how digital disruptors can
materially affect the markets in which they operate, leaving incumbents scrambling to catch up.
Potential problems with such global monopolists can also be observed. More than anecdotal evidence
already exists on this. Examples include Amazon blocking potential publishers and Air Bnb barring
potential guests with different political views than the left-of-centre or liberal norms.
The labour market reduction due to the disappearance of a number of traditional professions that
are replaced by PropTech solutions. For example, the labour market of valuers is reduced by the
platform «FinCase» (, a project developed in Russia, which can be attributed to the
class of Portfolio Management. The platform offers the FinCase Scoring Value Analysis System
solution a solution for the automatic valuation of real estate, which allows automata of the valuation
and forecast of the value of both residential and non-residential real estate. In fact, the phenomenon of
labour market contraction entails any decision based on AI technologies. Thus, BIMSynch (Latvia)
delivered a start-up project in Riga with the digital construction platform BiM Building
Synchronization Platform, construction management class. The project proposes an IT- platform for
managing construction processes under the “guidance” of BIM and a mobile application that allows
comparing the real state of the construction object with its model. The platform will provide users with
savings in time and money by optimizing the cost of a construction, improving synchronization of
joint actions of subcontractors, improving copyright supervision, and construction monitoring
processes, quality real estate management while reducing the number of employees.
PropTech is also driving growth in the labour market but in completely new segments. For
example, the development of digital real estate marketing leads to the growth of the labour market for
specialists in the creation of digital twins of virtual and augmented reality (3D-VR), operators of
multi-level earth remote sensing systems, specialists in indoor mapping, facilitators in using IoT.
Companies in leading sectors have workforces that are 13 times more digitally engaged than the
rest of the economy. In lagging sectors, the digital engagement of the workforce can be erratic; some
organizations have made progress in certain areas but have not yet addressed foundational tasks their
workers perform.
PropTech has also influenced the appearance of new trends that never existed before. These
have influenced both the workforce and workplace in the real estate market. We go through each of
them below.
Trends in the emergence of unique solutions that never previously existed in the history of
mankind. Let us examine some examples of results that testify to such tendency. BIM data
information models have never driven construction processes, as it is in the case in the aforementioned
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BIMSynch project. Instruments are known as BIM are the source of information for AI, which makes
construction budgeting in a few minutes. The instruments were developed in which BIM manage the
logistics of construction materials on spatial data on the location of the respective warehouses. All of
these solutions have a place for the simple reason that BIM had never been before.
Another example is the project of the Velvet (Estonia) company. Name of the project: The
Blockchain is the platform of cross-border housing transactions. The platform solves the problem of
remote authentication of civil law subjects, the design and implementation of e-transactions,
communication with payment systems, and so forth. Its regulations allow all interested parties in
transactions to identify themselves and make decisions based on big data (in this case: the list of
sanctions, information on criminal offences) to ensure the fact of cooperation with the proper person.
The regulations provide the necessary level of transparency, when customers can see at what level of
transaction they have: the payment was made, the payment was accepted; the transaction was done,
and so forth. Regulations of the platform provide an immutable record, when the terms of the
transaction cannot be changed under any circumstances, while maintaining a high level of security and
confidence to all types of transactions. Regulations of the platform have everything for the execution
of transactions that provide interaction platforms for worldwide interbank financial SWIFT messaging
for payments with escrow accounts (platforms).
Velvet implements transaction of purchase/sale with a high degree of security regardless of the
geographic location of the property and civil rights. Possible areas of use of the platform: logistics, E-
Commerce, real estate, stocks, and so forth. The top of the countries in the implementation of the
project are Ukraine, Germany, Russia, Finland and Turkey. This project is unique for the simple
reason that never before was not used smart contracts, blockchain and token in real estate transactions
by this way.
The trend of companies moving away from office space and moving from permanent offices to
fragmented use of common space and workplaces right at home. This phenomenon was envisaged
by the PropTech concept, which introduced the concept of „separation economy into practice.
Coworking (Co-working, „teamwork‟) is becoming a new approach to organizing the work of people
with different occupations in a common space. Coworking space is often called a shared space, a
collective office. Coworking characterizes the flexible organization of the workspace and the demand
form communities.
Coworking space is referred to as the third place, separate from two ordinary social
environments: home („first place‟) and workplace („second place). Examples of third places are often
shown as environments such as cafes, clubs, public libraries, parks, shared offices, and so forth.
According to Jones Lang LaSalle (2016), 25% of average working time is currently spent in the third
places. Dennis Frenchman from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology proposed the term
fractionation of real estate to describe the fragmented use of inefficiently-used space of the same real
estate. Fractionated real estate becomes a workspace sharing platform. Projects of the Short-Term
Rental / Vacation Search class have already been implemented, allowing to become the owner of the
office on the principles of coworking for several hours from the moment of a contact. The demand for
joint workspace is caused by the growth of creative and technical industries, as well as a change in the
nature of work. The number of collaborators that have been used coworking is growing steadily from
year to year and, according to current estimates, reached 1 million participants in 2017.
Educational Trends. When we deliberate ongoing and inevitable changes in the education,
three trends should be noted.
Firstly, the more active participation of universities in start-up projects. For example, the
company R8tech (Estonia) entered the competition (table 1) with the project „Digital operator of
commercial real estate (IoT Home class). The IT operator is based on a model of facilitation
management with elements of AI; with the so-called Autopilot on the premises; with the mapping of
interior spaces; with continuous communication with customers. The Autopilot function of the
IOP Conf. Series: Materials Science and Engineering 869 (2020) 062041
IOP Publishing
operator gives users confidence that all rooms are heated/cooled and ventilated properly. This saves
20% of energy consumption. The „Diagnostics‟ function of the digital operator analyses the current
characteristics of the engineering equipment of the building, and determines the details of its
anomalies and malfunctions. The Accident Detection function is provided by the technical services
of a digital operator, which are provided continuously, oriented to owners and managers, in order to
ensure long-term operation of engineering equipment, transparency of management, and a comfortable
indoor climate. The company‟s partner in the project is Tallinn University of Technology, which
implements modern innovative projects of intelligent agents based on AI for the technical operation of
Secondly, universities began to train future specialists in the PropTech segment with an
expanded profile. They are equally prepared in four areas: information technology, legislation,
economics and management.
Thirdly, universities strive to transfer their education towards practical and project-oriented
training, thereby attracting students to start-up projects carried out in partnership with companies in
the PropTech community.
This approach even allows you to teach what is not yet but will appear in the future.
Undoubtedly, the main challenge of the future is constantly changed. To cope with this constant
change, the educational unit must be more flexible.
6. Conclusion
PropTech can be seen as a new battleground in real estate. Global technology entrepreneurs and
investors have already begun turning their attention to reinventing the real estate sector, through
business model innovation and product innovation. Companies are using PropTech to raise the bar in
operational efficiency, customer engagement, innovation, and workforce productivity. The general
impact of PropTech on the labour market is a more complex issue than the impact on real estate and
built environment alone. The results are expected to be mixed: one the one hand, widespread
dislocation of workers, and possibly unjust treatment of dissident voices by global monopolists, but on
the other, a proliferation of PropTech that offer new, potentially more flexible ways of working,
education, matching skills, and acquiring skills. So at the same time two opposite trends emerge: one,
harm caused by movement of unskilled labour force (possibly together with over-abundant skilled
labour force), from low-income countries towards high-income countries, where their arrival, in the
absence of strong unions, will lead to a race towards bottom in the local labour market; two, for those
who are in the market for high level technology and management oriented roles, a convenient fit
between demand and supply for such jobs (controlling of BIM process, moderation of AI and so
While precise predictions for next generation or two are impossible, our approach necessary
needs be forward looking. University graduates must have the skills to adapt to a rapidly changing
labour market; they must have the skills to solve the still unknown problems of the future. The fact is
that professional and technical skills can be acquired and updated at a later stage of their career, while
theoretical problem- solving skills, self-development skills can be achieved only through the process
of academic preparation at universities. To cope with this constant change, the educational base must
be more flexible, universal and where a scientifically rigorous Real Estate course is established in
the curriculum PropTech oriented. All this considered, we believe that our survey be helpful for
companies, foreign investors and government in terms of making a proper choice of a real estate sector
digital development and creating clear investor-friendly conditions in different countries.
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IOP Publishing
[2] Territorial Agenda 2020 ‐ Towards an Inclusive, Smart and Sustainable Europe of Diverse
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Constructions, 6(1), 2015, pp. 5-28
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Development Policy When Places Compete, Regional Studies, 38(9), 2004, pp. 1101-1120.
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[20] Pompe, A. and Temeljotov Salaj, A., Qualitative criteria of urbanism and brands: A
comparative analysis, Urbani izziv, 25(1), 2014, pp. 74-92.
... PropTech represents the massive implementation of emerging technologies to allow construction and real estate companies staying smart, sustainable, and inclusive in today's global business [12]. The concept of PropTech, firstly developed in 2017 by Oxford University School of Business [13], became the concept for radically introduce new approaches in the industry [14]. Even if the concept started to describe the digitalisation waves of the real estate sector, nowadays digital applications for the general construction sectors (such as, drones for site management) are listed in the PropTech maps of several networks. ...
... Even if the concept started to describe the digitalisation waves of the real estate sector, nowadays digital applications for the general construction sectors (such as, drones for site management) are listed in the PropTech maps of several networks. PropTech is still a new phenomenon, that is growing up over time and deeply itemising the different clusters, such as ConTech (Construction Technology) for smart cities and building applications, and FinTech (Financial Technology) for financial operations of the AECO industry [14]. ...
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... Identified categories are monitoring of space usage, occupier experience, health and sustainability, end-to-end online transaction and mobility of future work. Evidently, the application of PropTech helps real estate professionals to raise the bar in operational efficiency, customer engagement, innovation, and workforce productivity (Siniak, Kauko, Shavrov, & Marina, 2020) especially during crisis as to continue operation while mitigating risk of virus infection. Collectively, PropTech helps to improve real estate transaction and management via the availability of information. ...
... Baum, Saull, & Braesemann (2020) associate PropTech as the small part of digital transformation of the property industry which rooted from three independent movements of Fintech, Smart Building technologies and the Shared Economy ( Figure 2a) and later updated to include ConTech and Legal Tech (Figure 2b). Additionally, PropTech is also associated as a collective term used for the determination of start-ups that offer technologically innovative products and new business models for the real estate markets (Siniak et al., 2020) ...
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Pada September 2021, Pertubuhan Pendidikan, Sains dan Kebudayaan Pertubuhan Bangsa-Bangsa Bersatu (UNESCO) telah melancarkan Sidang Kemuncak Pendidikan Transformasi (Transforming Education Summit) sebagai tindak balas kepada krisis global dalam pendidikan. Pelancaran ini merupakan inisiatif UNESCO menggembleng usaha pemulihan COVID-19 dan pemerkasaan Matlamat 4 Pendidikan Berkualiti, Matlamat Pembangunan Mampan (SDG) 2030. Hal ini kerana Pertubuhan Bangsa-Bangsa Bersatu (UN) mendedahkan bahawa COVID-19 telah memburukkan lagi krisis pembelajaran di dunia, 147 juta kanak-kanak tercicir lebih separuh daripada pengajaran dalam kelas sejak tahun 2020. Impak pandemik ini turut mengancam kemenjadian pelajar pelbagai peringkat pendidikan. Selaras dengan misi SDG, Kerajaan Negeri Kelantan komited dalam membangunkan rakyat menjadi insan mulia melalui pendidikan berdasarkan prinsip ketiga dalam Dasar Pendidikan Rabbani Kelantan (DPRK) iaitu Kemenjadian Insan Mulia. Prinsip ini menekankan generasi rabbani memiliki kecintaan ilmu pengetahuan dalam jiwa pelajar. Merujuk perspektif Islam, perbuatan menimba ilmu pengetahuan bermula dari peringkat rendah hingga ke peringkat tinggi perlu ditekankan dalam pembinaan insan mulia. Justeru, inisiatif pembangunan dan pemerkasaan pendidikan serta pemulihan krisis pendidikan merupakan kewajipan setiap individu. Jika kewajipan menimba ilmu hingga ke peringkat tinggi dipandang enteng maka kecintaan ilmu pengetahuan menjadi pudar malah menjejaskan kesejahteraan negara dan ummah. Sehubungan itu, kajian ini dikemukakan bagi membincangkan kelebihan pembangunan pelajar sekolah Yayasan Islam Kelantan (YIK) hasil pelaksanaan prinsip Kemenjadian Insan Mulia berdasarkan dalil al-Quran kecintaan ilmu pengetahuan dalam DPRK. Berasaskan metode analisis tekstual secara tematik, kajian kualitatif ini mendapati pelaksanaan prinsip Kemenjadian Insan Mulia berpotensi membangunkan kecintaan terhadap ilmu pengetahuan dan membantu mengurangkan krisis pendidikan global. Kajian ini turut positif prinsip Kemenjadian Insan Mulia berupaya menambah kualiti pendidikan negara dan mampu melahirkan generasi rabbani. Kesimpulannya, pelaksanaan prinsip DPRK dilihat berkemampuan menyumbang kepada usaha pembangunan pelajar secara holistik sebagai insan mulia yang diperlukan oleh masyarakat dan negara. Kata kunci: Pembangunan, Kemenjadian, Insan Mulia, Pendidikan, DPRK
... The technological wave is also increasing the efficiency of the AECO industry [9]. This digital innovation of the construction and real estate sector, defined as PropTech, is introducing several benefits in operations, such as, process improvements, advantages from market competitiveness, and operational efficiency [47]. Generally, PropTech represents the new approaches introduced into the industry [10], that push organizations to stay smart, sustainable, and inclusive [11]. ...
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... The term PropTech indicates all technologies that are impacting the real estate market . It increases operations' effectiveness and efficiency (Siniak and Kauko 2020). PropTech companies are usually startups and scaleups (but, also consolidated companies) that bring into the real estate innovation, digital development, and transparency . ...
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... The digital transformation has impacted all parts of its value chain and phases of the asset lifecycle, such as portfolio management, real estate market analytics, real estate brokerage platforms, or real estate design, construction, and management software (e.g. BIM, CAD), including virtual and augmented reality-based visual world displays, as well as the use of smart home applications and other IoT tools (Maududy & Gamal, 2019;Siniak et al., 2020). ...
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... In the recent years, the debate shifted attention from the interpretation of the phenomenon towards the further possible developments and applications of PropTech solutions. Some articles focus on the implications of the use of PropTech solutions to improve the transparency and standardization of the real estate processes [4,5]. Others look at specific technological applications in the real estate sector, such the use of Artificial Intelligence in the rental platforms [6] or the application of Blockchain to implement smart contracts in real estate [7]. ...
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The spectrum of innovation in the Architecture-Engineering-Construction-Operation (AECO) industry is called PropTech (abbreviation for Property-Technology). PropTech uses digital technologies to improve the products and processes of the construction and real estate industry over the whole building life cycle. However, PropTech applications are not extensively adopted yet, as many established companies are still doubtful about the added value of a digital transition, which encompasses significant investments. This reluctancy might be due to a lack of evidence about the benefits of technology adoption. Therefore, the present study aims to outline the advantages of adopting digital technology in building management by analysing two case studies that can be considered good practices of an effective investment made possible by PropTech. Netix Controls developed a centralized system based on Machine Learning (ML), to collect and integrate data from different manufacturer chillers, fire alarms, and lighting systems, and applied it to two separate networks of 77 and 14 buildings, respectively, which correspond to the two cases under analysis in this paper. Through desktop data and interviews the study analyses economic costs, environmental impact, and users’ well-being of the two cases and compares them ideally to a fictional case, which does not include ML but only traditional Facility Management (FM) procedures. In conclusion, the advantages of embracing innovation in FM through digital technologies are outlined. In particular, the potential will be discussed of predictive maintenance, and the prospective implications of real-time building management expanded at district and city scale.
... Some of the more sophisticated proptech organizations such as Zillow, Redfin, and Zoopla provide innovative sales data, neighborhood metrics, property estimates, and neighborhood comparisons. Siniak et al. (2020) described proptech as the implementation of emerging technology such as drones, virtual reality, building information modeling, blockchains, smart contracts, and smart cities, in the real estate sector. Benjamin et al. (2002) believed that decreasing the cost of technology and its widespread use would affect productivity and the level of income earned by realtors. ...
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Real estate marketing has traditionally been accomplished through conventional media outlets such as print advertising since the inception of the industry. However, the digital evolution is changing the way real estate professionals engage with their customers. This doctoral study explored effective digital marketing strategies for increased engagement in real estate. The general business problem was that it was not known what digital marketing strategies were used by property managers at GildEstates to increase consumer engagement or how those marketing strategies could be improved. The specific business problem was that some Real Estate managers lack the necessary digital marketing strategies to increase consumer engagement. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to determine what digital marketing strategies were used by GildEstates to increase consumer engagement and how those marketing strategies could be improved. The analysis resulted in a total of eight themes that answered two research questions. The first research question was what digital marketing strategies are used by GildEstates to increase consumer engagement? The second research question was, how could those marketing strategies be improved? The researcher used a qualitative research method to conduct the study. The design the researcher used was a case study. The case study consisted of fifteen (15) participants currently employed as property managers at GildEstates (Pseudonym). The researcher used Braun and Clarkes 6 phase Thematic Analysis to code, search, review, define, and perform a write-up of the findings. 2 The findings concluded that participants seeking to increase consumer engagement require technology that provides a simplistic method of tracking communication with their target audience. Additionally, the property managers of GildEstates described the importance of using digital media to provide information that saves time, stay informed, and educate their client as means to help them increase consumer engagement. The findings also determined that property managers at GildEstates rely on digital media’s ability to allow customers to initiate engagement with the property managers in a non-invasive and safe manner for property managers to be able to increase consumer engagement.
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Purpose: The main objective of this study is to quantify the impact of marketing strategies on real estate leasing in the Peruvian context. Theoretical framework: An exhaustive review of the academic literature was carried out to gain an in-depth knowledge of the existing paradigms related to real estate marketing and the leasing phenomenon. Design/Methodology/Approach: A quantitative, descriptive-explanatory methodology was chosen. A structured questionnaire was administered to a representative sample of 30 tenants. Results: The data collected evidenced a notable correlation between marketing tactics and lease rates, with a significant p-value (less than 0.05). Also, Spearman's Rho and Kendall's Tau_b correlation coefficients of 0.678 and 0.632, respectively, were found. It was observed that approximately half of the contracts analyzed are not duly registered with SUNARP, and there was a lack of detailed information on the tenant profile in about one third of the real estate developments. Practical and social implications: The lack of registration of contracts generates an environment of legal vulnerability, increasing the risk of legal conflicts between the parties involved. The absence of information on the tenant's profile may hinder the proper selection of tenants. Emphasis is placed on the proposal to establish effective conflict resolution mechanisms and on the imperative need for transparency in fee structures, seeking to strengthen the fiduciary relationship between landlords and tenants. Originality/value: This study provides an innovative view on the impact of marketing strategies in the Peruvian leasing sector. It provides empirical and quantitative evidence on current contractual practices and the presentation of properties in the market. It highlights the urgent need to refine current strategies to consolidate a transparent and reliable leasing market in Peru.
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Property and construction are some of world’s largest industries, but also some of the largest producers of waste and CO 2 -emissions. The property or real estate industry is currently undergoing a digital transformation. Property technology (proptech) is one of the driving forces for this transformation and enablers to establish a more sustainable society. This paper investigates the Norwegian market through 154 proprietary proptech established between 2013 – 2023. The aim is to understand how proprietary proptech are influencing the business practices and how the real estate industry’s overall capacity, efforts, and resources have been allocated in developing novel proptech. Three theoretical frameworks sociotechnical systems (STS), diffusion of innovation, and sustainability transitions, have been used to investigate how proptech influences the real estate industry and FM. The results suggest there are innovations coming from at least two unexpected places, namely customised modules moving faster than proprietary proptech, and game changers enabled by feedback loops from late stage and FM big data to early stage property development.
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Qualitative criteria of urbanism and brands: A comparative analysis Interactivity, multidisciplinarity, synergy and interde‑ pendence are all concepts that are clearly intertwined with managing every responsible city and its leaders. Urbanism plays a significant role among the disciplines that affect the uniqueness and competitive position of a city. None of the cities that are successful in a competi‑ tive environment would be a noteworthy and powerful brand if they did not possess recognisable, singular and distinctive elements of urbanism that made them unique. This article proceeds from the hypothesis that urbanism with qualitative solutions helps shape a city's brand and that the criteria that demonstrate this are in agreement with the qualitative criteria of a brand. In reviewing the scholarly literature on urbanism as brands and brand‑ ing itself, it is shown that qualitative urbanism criteria show great similarity with qualitative brand criteria, and therefore have a decisive effect on a city brand and its placement in a competitive urban market. Qualitative ur‑ banism and brand criteria are closely linked and tend to be cast in the same mould, although they differ in formu‑ lation and level of implementation. These acknowledged similarities represent a step forward in integral operation, management, communication and urban marketing. They also enable more‑or‑less unconnected areas of urbanism and marketing to connect. The positive consequences of understanding the connection of both fields will be long‑term and will build a recognisable, consistent and stakeholder‑friendly reputation for a city. These findings are a golden opportunity for urban management and con‑ firm the need for a comprehensive approach to urban management.
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Competitiveness is a complex concept used in a variety of ways and contexts. The paper reviews some of the main ideas, particularly as they apply to cities and regions. Its definition should include the relative position of a region's firms in external markets, the productivity of local resources and the extent to which they are used. Competition takes both an institutionalized form (local public agencies competing overtly for investment and other resources) and, more importantly, a less organized form involving firms trading in wider markets. There are two contrasting perspectives on the competitive advantages of city-regions. One emphasizes the benefits of scale and diversity that flow from concentrations of economic activity. The other stresses the quality of the interactions between firms and supporting institutions. Recent studies suggest that the significance of localized business networks or clusters might be exaggerated and that a broader perspective of city-region competitiveness is required.
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Do regions compete, as firms do? How does one deal with the fact that regions, unlike organizations, are entities that do not act? Does it make sense to talk about the ability of regions to generate new variety? This paper aims to address these questions from an evolutionary perspective. It is meaningful to talk about regional competitiveness when the region affects the performances of local firms to a considerable degree. This is especially true when the competitiveness of a region depends on intangible, non-tradable assets based on a knowledge and competence base embedded in a particular institutional setting that are reproduced and modified through the actions and repeated interactions of actors. Although regions are increasingly becoming collective players actively responding to an increasing exposure to extra-regional competition, the paper explains why there are serious limits in enhancing the competitiveness of regions. By doing so, it questions the usefulness of benchmarking practices with the purpose of improving regional competitiveness: there exists no 'optimal' development model, it is difficult to copy or imitate a successful model from elsewhere, and new trajectories often emerge spontaneously and unexpectedly in space.
Purpose The sustainability agenda has already become widely recognised in real estate analysis. However, two challenges are to overcome before sustainability issues are brought fully into the professional and academic mainstream: first, the provision of sustainability enhancing qualities; and second, to overcome deep-rooted scepticism towards the higher cost element of such qualities (i.e. creating economies of scale). Another potentially related issue is that the notion of innovation is gaining popularity in this field. Innovation-driven change is cyclical and unpredictable, which in turn calls for an explicit evolutionary and complexity perspective. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach Critical literature review. The author’s own experience as participant of the discussions and debates is also used. Findings The conclusions suggest that, in line with evolutionary and complexity principles, innovations exist and emerge within the real estate industry itself, and in fields related to it – and this includes various aspects of promoting sustainability thinking. Research limitations/implications This contribution uses valuation automata as an example of this argumentation. Practical implications The concept of complexity refers to emerging qualities found in the evolution of the development of an industry; the practical implication of complexity concerns the capability of managers to react competently in unfamiliar circumstances. Social implications Thus, innovation in real estate is both economic and socio-cultural. Originality/value No similar (i.e. theoretically informed) papers on innovation or sustainability in real estate analysis have been written to the best of the author’s knowledge.
Notions of the smart city are pervasive in urban development discourses. Various frameworks for the development of smart cities, often conceptualised as roadmaps, make a number of implicit claims about how smart city projects proceed but the legitimacy of those claims is unclear. This paper begins to address this gap in knowledge. We explore the development of a smart transport application, MotionMap, in the context of a £16M smart city programme taking place in Milton Keynes, UK. We examine how the idealised smart city narrative was locally inflected, and discuss the differences between the narrative and the processes and outcomes observed in Milton Keynes. The research shows that the vision of data-driven efficiency outlined in the roadmaps is not universally compelling, and that different approaches to the sensing and optimisation of urban flows have potential for empowering or disempowering different actors. Roadmaps tend to emphasise the importance of delivering quick practical results. However, the benefits observed in Milton Keynes did not come from quick technical fixes but from a smart city narrative that reinforced existing city branding, mobilising a growing network of actors towards the development of a smart region. Further research is needed to investigate this and other smart city developments, the significance of different smart city narratives, and how power relationships are reinforced and constructed through them.
Purpose – Real estate market transparency is an important factor in real estate investment and occupier decision making. The purpose of this paper is to assess real estate transparency over 2004-2014 to determine whether the European real estate markets have become more transparent in a regional and global context. Design/methodology/approach – Using the JLL real estate transparency index over 2004-2014, changes in real estate market transparency are assessed for 102 real estate markets. This JLL real estate market transparency index is also assessed against corruption levels and business competitiveness in these markets. Findings – Improvements in real estate transparency are clearly evident in many European real estate markets, with several of these European real estate markets seen to be the major improvers in transparency from a global real estate markets perspective. Practical implications – Institutional investors and occupiers see real estate market transparency as a key factor in their strategic real estate investment and occupancy decision making. By assessing changes in real estate transparency across 102 real estate markets, investors and occupiers are able to make more informed real estate investment decisions across the global real estate markets. In particular, this relates to both investors and occupiers being able to more fully understand the risk dimensions of their international real estate decisions. Originality/value – This paper is the first paper to assess the dynamics of real estate market transparency over 2004-2014, with a particular focus on the 33 European real estate markets in a global context to facilitate more informed real estate investment and occupancy decision making.
This paper argues that the emerging research on territorial competition should be supplemented by an explicit consideration of the role of real property, and property market process, in shaping urban competitiveness. The competitive position of urban areas depends directly on the existing stock of property and the flow of new or modified buildings. Equally important, however, are the institutional form and structure of the property market, and the process by which economic pressures for change are translated into property market activity. Evidence from six contrasting European cities demonstrates marked differences in the institutional environment of their respective property markets. These differences are explored in terms of their potential significance for the determination of urban competitiveness. The illustrative case studies provide a schedule of property market characteristics which can be used to inform explanations of urban economic change and to support the design of policies for territorial competition.
In this article a theoretical framework will be presented to aid understanding of the functioning of property markets, more particularly the Dutch property market. It will be argued that traditional urban economic theories are not able to explain the structure and processes of the built environment. In the Dutch case, we are confronted with two problems; first, to find a way in which urban economic theories, designed for a context of cities in Great Britain and the US, can be used to explain urban development that takes place in the different context of Dutch cities; and, secondly, to formulate a set of hypotheses appropriate for the Dutch property market. The hypotheses concern the strategies of individual actors on the property market and the underlying factors. It is concluded that, in general, the relation between institutional structure and property development has been neglected both because of insufficient attention from economic scientists, and because empirical research is very complicated.
The realization that places compete for investment has expanded in recent years to encompass competition among places for the attention of migrants, tourists and media glow as well as investment. The most competitive places have been multidimensional in their attractions and have made the transition to the knowledge-based economy. The latest priority is being placed on attracting mobile workers and mobile investment. Creative workers are the core of the knowledge economy and of its geographies such as 'intelligent places' and 'learning regions'. Knowledge metrics, innovation indices and report cards are increasingly common, each seemingly developed to sort the list of places in a different order. Lists or league tables of 'the best places' for business, to live, retire and visit are key features of economies and societies whose factors of success are highly mobile. Competition in a geographical context and entrepreneurial responses are unlikely to go away, reinforced by an industry comprised of consultancies, the trade press, formal education and other means of learning. Consequently, policy-makers need to grasp the nature of place competition and the critical roles of knowledge and of networks in the strategies of the most competitive places. The standard of competition is complex, comprising innovation indices and cooperation within the network of world cities.
Conventional treatments of urban change almost uniformly ignore the role of land and property markets as essential mediators of such change. The urban built environment is assumed to be a passive adapter to structural change. However, given the complexity of property market process -- in particular the disparate nature of market actors, decision rules, and institutions, the immutable characteristics of property, and the obvious constraints imposed by the existing built environment -- simple adaptive adjustment is unlikely to take place. These factors can themselves be expected to play an important part in shaping urban growth and development outcomes. In response to these concerns, we propose a property market paradigm of urban change and examine its relevance in the context of six major European urban regions. The results suggest that this approach can provide a more holistic understanding of contemporary urban change than that offered by conventional analysis.