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Assessment of early warning signs predisposing building projects to failure in Nigeria

Emmanuel Oluwatobi Adebisi (Department of Building, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria)
Oluwaseyi Olalekan Alao (Department of Quantity Surveying, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria)
Stephen Okunlola Ojo (Department of Building, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria)

Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology

ISSN: 1726-0531

Article publication date: 3 February 2020

Issue publication date: 28 October 2020

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129

Abstract

Purpose

The continuous failure of construction projects notwithstanding appreciable increase in project management knowledge has necessitated a proactive approach of assessing early warning signs (EWS) of building projects failure. Building projects are expected to show warning signs before experiencing crises, comparable to a patient displaying symptoms of a disease. Thus, this study aims to examine the EWS that predisposed building projects to failure in Nigeria to provide empirical data for enhancing projects delivery.

Design/methodology/approach

Primary data were used for the study. Structured questionnaire was administered to consultants and contractors’ personnel within Lagos State, Nigeria. A total of 180 copies of questionnaire were administered and 134 copies (combined response rate of 74.44 per cent) were retrieved. Frequency distribution, percentages, mean item score and Mann–Whitney test were used to analyse the data.

Findings

Most construction professionals applied the EWS approach from project planning and early construction phase. The most significant EWS predisposing building projects to failure were “Management inability and incompetence to proactively detect and manage problems at early project stages”, “Actual expenditure is constantly shooting beyond cost estimates” and “Incurred costs already getting higher than the anticipated benefits”. Project/construction management-related symptoms are most significant to predisposing building projects to failure.

Practical implications

The study provided implications for effective project management of building projects through proactive approach which is very paramount to improving the delivery of building projects in Nigeria.

Originality/value

The study provides implications for proactive management of building projects, thereby enhancing the delivery of building projects.

Keywords

Citation

Adebisi, E.O., Alao, O.O. and Ojo, S.O. (2020), "Assessment of early warning signs predisposing building projects to failure in Nigeria", Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology, Vol. 18 No. 6, pp. 1403-1423. https://doi.org/10.1108/JEDT-08-2019-0214

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited