The Future Of CRE: Q&A With MIPIM Director Filippo Rean
Given the political, economic and environmental shifts taking place across the globe, the future of CRE promises to be a wild ride. Bisnow talked with Filippo Rean — director of MIPIM and head of Reed MIDEM’s real estate division — about the changes and opportunities that will be shaping the industry.
Bisnow: What global challenges do you see for 2017 that will impact the real estate sector?
Rean: There are four key challenges and the first of those is urban planning. In the coming years, 8.3 billion people will live on Earth and over 60% of the population will live in cities. How will this impact the design and construction of tomorrow’s cities? Next comes efficiency of resources: How will future real estate projects be able to take into account the need to monitor and save resources, when energy demands will grow 40% and half the world’s population will be living in areas of high water stress? Global economic and political power shifts [are] another main global challenge. Taking into account Brexit and U.S., French, German and Italian elections, etc., how will these changes in power ricochet off the sector and impact investment, governance and global cooperation? The fourth main global challenge is digitalisation. Very soon, over 1 trillion objects will be connected to the internet and all the data collected from the users and the buildings will clearly modify the way real estate professionals are working.
Bisnow: What sustainability initiatives do you support for real estate?
Rean: I support any initiatives that render real estate more sustainable. Energy efficiency, space, mobility, sustainable construction and the monitoring of resources (building materials and water, for example) are just some of the key factors that need to be considered in the cities and buildings of tomorrow. Cities are going to need to be thought of differently. At MIPIM, our headlining keynote has been confirmed as global strategist Parag Khanna, an international relations expert and author of "Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization". According to Khanna, increasing connectivity is poised to push back national borders and give power to the connected people and organisations.
Bisnow: How do you see government and the private sector working together to achieve sustainability goals?
Rean: How exactly remains to be seen, but what I do know is that the public and private sectors have the obligation to collaborate and work together on sustainability goals, be it linked to mobility, logistics and delivery, the well-being of citizens, etc.
Bisnow: What other issues are important for commercial real estate moving into 2017 and beyond?
Rean: Offices are more and more being used differently due to technology and new ways of working by the Millennials. There is far greater mobility in workspaces and there is a surge in office sharing and co-working environments springing up in every city in the world. It is a movement that is really taking off and for example in the MIPIM startup competition we have a Dutch finalist, ParkBee, which specialises in finding parking spaces in busy cities for its users via its mobile app. This solution in itself is one example of the potential of sharing and collaboration in the work context.