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Barriers to risk management in small construction projects in Sri Lanka

Udara Willhelm Abeydeera Lebunu Hewage (School of PCPM, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia)
Jayantha Wadu Mesthrige (School of PCPM, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia)
Eric G. Too (School of PCPM, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia)

Built Environment Project and Asset Management

ISSN: 2044-124X

Article publication date: 12 February 2024

Issue publication date: 14 March 2024

102

Abstract

Purpose

This study explores the current status of risk management (RM) in Sri Lanka and the obstacles in implementing RM in Sri Lankan small construction projects.

Design/methodology/approach

The current research study adopted a quantitative research method. Using a purposeful sampling strategy, 100 construction companies engaged in small construction projects in Sri Lanka were selected and a questionnaire was distributed among top managerial employees of these companies. Employees belonging to 47 companies responded to the survey which provided information relating to 812 construction projects. The collected data were analyzed using the RM implementation index (RMII) and other quantitative measures such as mean, median and percentages.

Findings

The research findings indicated that RM incorporation was at a lower degree in small construction projects in Sri Lanka. The findings further indicated that RM incorporation was relatively high in the public construction projects compared to the private construction projects. The main obstacles identified through the survey for RM implementation were: “lack of funding”, “lack of time”, “low profit margin”, “not economical” and “lack of knowledge”.

Research limitations/implications

The study was limited to exploring RM implementation in small construction projects in Sri Lanka. The study was limited to the building construction companies under the 150-million-rupee (approx. below 450,000 USD) financial limit registered with the construction industry development authority in Sri Lanka.

Originality/value

RM in small construction projects in developing countries is a relatively less explored domain. Sri Lankan construction industry is another relatively less explored domain in terms of new management technique implementation such as RM and value management. The quantitative approach used for the study revealed that RM implementation is at a lower degree in the small construction projects. Moreover, several obstacles pertaining to RM implementation were recognized through this study. These findings will be useful for the construction stakeholders to overcome the recognized barriers and effectively use RM in their respective construction projects.

Keywords

Citation

Lebunu Hewage, U.W.A., Wadu Mesthrige, J. and Too, E.G. (2024), "Barriers to risk management in small construction projects in Sri Lanka", Built Environment Project and Asset Management, Vol. 14 No. 2, pp. 296-311. https://doi.org/10.1108/BEPAM-06-2023-0104

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2024, Emerald Publishing Limited

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