Filling the Knowledge Gaps in Mass Timber Construction.
Where are the Missing Pieces, What are the Research Needs?
As mass timber construction evolves from a niche product to a mainstream, there is an urgent need for focused research activities to support the industry and avoid duplication or overlap of work being done internationally. To identify and prioritise the future of mass timber research agenda, this article pursues responses to the following questions: What is the current state of knowledge and where are the remaining research needs in mass timber construction? For example, newcomers to mass timber often believe it is imperative to research fire performance, fire resistance, or sound transmission when these areas have been extensively explored and are now widely seen as resolved. Consequently, the focus has shifted, towards answering new research questions, including explorations of carbon storage, and life cycle analysis durability. There is already a growing research activity in mass timber, involving several research centres worldwide, that would benefit from some guidance on research needs. Thus, defining new trends and research gaps that help avoid replicating research. A more nuanced discussion on knowledge gaps and industry research needs is also timely, to truly capture and disseminate information on the full potential of engineered-wood products as an innovative construction material, which helps reduce the use of carbon-intensive conventional building materials. To answer the above-mentioned research questions, this study has consulted experts at an international conference, and seven key research areas have been identified and presented as the results.
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