The 3D building information model data format “IFC” defined by buildingSMART Japan (bSJ hereafter) which includes buildingSMART International (bSI hereafter) has been certified in 2013 as an international standard (ISO 16739:2013) and is being increasingly used as an open BIM data coordination method across the world. In each country’s BIM guideline, the use of IFC is being used as guidance for BIM data coordination methods, expanding the practical usage of IFC. bSI has been working towards international certification of IFC to solve the numerous problems in data coordination and precision. The international IFC certification holds meetings and workshops mainly in Europe, where while there are increasing numbers of BIM software in the US being IFC certified, the reality of Japanese BIM software is that there is a lack of IFC certified software.

The IFC Qualification run by bSJ aims to increase the usage and precision of IFC data coordination in practice within Japan by creating a structure which can objectively check technological content of IFC data coordination, by stipulating IFC data coordination to the international IFC certification framework.



The IFC Qualification aims to increase IFC data precision and sharing in practice, each subcommittee of bSJ operating to increase the shared understanding of the aims, workings, and technical information related to IFC by system users and system developers.

  The software must satisfy MVD (Model View Definition) to be eligible for certification. MVD is defined by the Technology Integration Committee based on BIM data coordination scenarios and IDM (Information Delivery Manual). The BIM Data coordination scenarios and IDM are stipulated by users and software maker investigations. By the IFC Qualification implementing MVD defined in this way, it is a qualification conforming to practical usage.
Qualification results are recorded on the bSJ management ledger and published on the website. Knowledge gained from the IFC Qualification are fed back into improving MVD, revising BIM data coordination scenarios and international IFC certification.
In the future, we intend on establishing a structure which allows the international IFC certification to be used in Japan.