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Value management is the name given to a process in which the functional benefits of a project are made explicit and appraised consistent with a value system determined by the client, customer or other stakeholders. It is exactly ten years since the publication of our previous book Value Management in Design and Construction: the Economic Management of Projects

A period during which value management has developed into a defined service and has gained recognition within predominantly the manufacturing and construction sectors of industry and academia. In the UK there is an emergent but strong uptake of value management in the service sector led by the legislated demand for best value in public services. In the UK there is an emergent but strong uptake of value management in the service sector led by the legislated demand for best value in public services.

The past ten years have largely seen the resolution of the debate over terminology aided by the publication of standards in many countries. It is generally accepted intemationally that 'value management', or 'the value methodology in the USA, describes the entire service. Other terms, principally 'value engineering', describe specific parts of the service. The year 2007 will mark 60 years of the life of the value management service.

During the first four decades North American thinking dominated its development. However, during the past ten years developments in principally Europe, Australasia and China notably Hong Kong) have seen the divergence of ideas and practices which have impacted the progress of the value methodology in North America. Interestingly, over the whole period value management has continuously improved, unlike other management fads that emerge, are applied with gusto and then die to be replaced by another.

Our past ten years have been spent researching, developing and applying value management. In 1993 John Kelly and Steven Male formed an informal joint venture with Drummond Graham of Thomson Bethune, Chartered Quantity Surveyors, Edinburgh, to develop and undertake value management consultancy. Since this time the team have been involved with over 200 value management studies for a variety of private and public sector clients for projects ranging from high profile national icon structures to public sector housing, undertaken at all project stages from inception to operation/facilities management and under all forms of procurement.

We have also adapted and used the value methodology for partnering studies, introducing organisational change and assisting bid teams prepare for bid submissions.The latter has proved particularly useful on PFI, prime contracting and other new procurement routes requiring collaborative working and where large supply chain teams can often be brought together. We have also found the VM methodology particularly robust in undertaking project reviews and project briefing studies where we have assembled multi-disciplinary independent teams to work with us and alongside client representatives.