The construction industry doesn’t talk about ‘Research and Development’ much any more. Perhaps the constant reminders that we spend noticeably less on R & D than most other sectors have made us altogether too depressed to talk about it, never mind do anything.

Instead we’ve resorted to the more comforting and certainly less confronting notion of ‘innovation.’ I suspect the currency the word ‘innovation’ has gained in the last few years reflects the discomfiture too many people and organisations in this industry, and others, feel when faced with the stark reality of R…