International property and construction consultancy Gleeds have announced that data scientist Alexandra Spencer has picked up a major accolade, being named as Future Leader by Innovate UK at the Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) Awards 2023.

Alexandra works in the Gleeds Digital team and was commended for her leadership and innovation demonstrated whilst working in collaboration with University of Nottingham.  The two formed a knowledge transfer partnership to bring the power of AI to streamline the process of construction cost estimation.

In the construction industry, client interactions and cost prediction are crucial. During the initial stage of any project, known as RIBA stage 0/1, clients present their project visions and Gleeds provide cost estimates — a process that continues until both parties agree on a budget.  Recognising the need for a more efficient approach, the pair successfully created an AI-driven solution capable of estimating costs instantly, allowing real-time adjustments during client meetings.

The collaborative partnerships forged through the KTP Programme wield a profound influence not only on the individuals and organisations involved, but also on our daily lives and the global community.

Others nominated in this category included: ART Health Solutions Ltd in collaboration with University of Northumbria at Newcastle, Fujitsu Limited in collaboration with Nottingham Trent University, I Want Plants Ltd in collaboration with Manchester Metropolitan University, Industrial Robotic Solutions Limited in collaboration with The University of Essex, Quick Release in collaboration with University of Bath and XAIS Asset Management Limited in collaboration with University of Nottingham.

Alexandra said: “I’m so grateful to Innovate UK for honouring me with the Future Leader Award.  It’s an amazing feeling to be recognised not just for your hard work and dedication, but also as a person.  I’m also forever grateful for the Gleeds team that has supported me from the beginning and to University of Nottingham’ academic supervisors, Dr Grazziela Figueredo and Sarah Davidson for their wealth of knowledge and guidance.”

Stuart Senior, Non-Executive Director, Gleeds said: “We are immensely proud to see Alexandra recognised as a future leader by Innovate UK and KT Partnerships.  The knowledge transfer partnership between the University of Nottingham and Gleeds has brought the power of AI to cost estimation in our sector, and will enable our clients to digitise cost estimation, work more efficiently and gain new insights.  It took science, personality, innovation and leadership to bring this together.”

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 Alexandra Spencer

Alexandra Spencer
Data scientist