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A hybrid SD-DEMATEL approach to develop a delay model for construction projects

Majid Parchami Jalal (Department of Architecture, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran)
Shahab Shoar (Department of Project and Construction Management, Mehralborz University, Tehran, Iran)

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management

ISSN: 0969-9988

Article publication date: 17 July 2017




The purpose of this paper is to develop a model for complex interconnected structure of various factors interacting with delay in order to identify the most important factors influencing and influenced by delay based on their interrelations.


Reviewing literature and interviewing with local experts selected from the Iranian construction industry, top 58 delay factors were identified and categorized into six major groups. The interrelations among these factors were, then, modeled using the system dynamics (SD) approach. The resulting causal loop diagrams obtained from SD were used subsequently for identifying the most significant factors influencing and influenced by delay through the Decision Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory (DEMATEL) method. The impact of factors on each other was finally determined based on the opinions of 63 experts selected from the Iranian community of consultants, contractors, and clients.


According to the analysis, eight out of the 58 factors were identified as the most influencing factors on delay, and nine factors were found to be the most influenced factors by delay in the field of delay analysis. The study also concluded that factors related to labors are the most important and influential factors. In addition, factors related to client were the most influencing factors and external-related factors were the least important ones. At the end, some recommendations to reduce variation of delay in the construction projects are presented as well.


Considering the interconnected structure of the factors, the paper identifies the most important factors interacting with time delay in construction projects.



Parchami Jalal, M. and Shoar, S. (2017), "A hybrid SD-DEMATEL approach to develop a delay model for construction projects", Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, Vol. 24 No. 4, pp. 629-651.



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Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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