An ontology-based cost estimation for offsite construction

Edlira Vakaj, Franco Cheung, Jianpeng Cao, Abdel Rahman H. Tawil, Panagiotis Patlakas

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    2 Citations (SciVal)


    Design for manufacturing and assembly (DfMA) has been widely applied to support the decision-making process in offsite construction. With a DfMA approach, cost estimation requires taking product design and production processes into consideration. Current studies conduct cost estimation built upon quantity take-offs. However, they do not provide a vocabulary to relate cost estimates to offsite construction processes. This paper presents a new domain ontology, Offsite Housing Ontology (OHO) using the NeOn methodology framework to support cost estimation considering products, resources, and production processes. OHO semantically defines offsite construction domain terminology and relationships. This supports a unified model, required for efficient collaborative design management. The efficiency and effectiveness of the OHO approach are demonstrated in a real-world DfMA scenario through the development of a Knowledge-Based Engineering tool to automate cost estimation. The approach can be adapted and extended to accommodate a very wide range of offsite housing, delivering important optimization and automation benefit from DfMA solutions.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)220-245
    Number of pages26
    JournalJournal of Information Technology in Construction
    Publication statusPublished (VoR) - 1 Apr 2023


    • Offsite Construction
    • Ontology Engineering
    • Building Information Modeling
    • DfMA
    • Linked Building Data


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