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Challenges and barriers to establishing infrastructure asset management: A comparative study between Libya and the USA

Wesam Beitelmal (Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering, University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, Colorado, USA)
Keith R. Molenaar (Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering, University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, Colorado, USA)
Amy Javernick-Will (Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering, University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, Colorado, USA)
Eugenio Pellicer (School of Civil Engineering, Universitat Politecnica de Valencia, Valencia, Spain)

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management

ISSN: 0969-9988

Article publication date: 20 November 2017

Abstract

Purpose

The increased need for, and maintenance of, infrastructure creates challenges for all agencies that manage infrastructure assets. To assist with these challenges, agencies implement asset management systems. The purpose of this paper is to investigate and compare the importance of barriers faced by agencies establishing transportation asset management systems in the USA and Libya to contrast a case of a developed and developing country.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review identified 28 potential barriers for implementing an asset management system. Practitioners who participate in decision-making processes in each country were asked to rate the importance of each barrier in an online survey questionnaire. Descriptive statistics, Kendall Concordance W., and Mann-Whitney are used to analyze the collected data.

Findings

Through an analysis of 61 completed questionnaires, 14 barriers were identified as important by both the US and Libyan practitioners. A total of 11 additional barriers, primarily in the areas of political and regulatory obstacles, were determined to be important only for Libya. These 11 barriers provide reasonable insights into asset management systems’ barriers for developing countries.

Practical implications

The list of barriers identified from this research will assist decision makers to address and overcome these barriers when implementing asset management systems in their specific organizational and country conditions.

Originality/value

The research identified standard barriers to implementing asset management systems and identified barriers that were specific to the country context, such as political and regulatory barriers in Libya. When viewed with the asset management literature, the results show broad applicability of some asset management barriers and the need to contextualize to country context (e.g. developing countries) for other barriers.

Keywords

Citation

Beitelmal, W., Molenaar, K.R., Javernick-Will, A. and Pellicer, E. (2017), "Challenges and barriers to establishing infrastructure asset management: A comparative study between Libya and the USA", Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, Vol. 24 No. 6, pp. 1184-1202. https://doi.org/10.1108/ECAM-12-2015-0200

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited