Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management

ISSN: 0969-9988

Article publication date: 1 December 2004



(2004), "Editorial", Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, Vol. 11 No. 6. https://doi.org/10.1108/ecam.2004.28611faa.001



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited


This issue (Vol. 11 No. 6) brings 2004 to a close and in this final edition of the year there are six papers from Hong Kong, Vietnam, Germany and the UK. Maintaining the international distribution of the contributing authors. There is one single authored paper, four with three authors and one with four authors reflecting that research is now well established as a team effort and that single authored papers are an exception.

The subjects are wide ranging from the currently topical congestion charging in London and the failure of the construction industry to gain exemptions to highly technical simulation using fuzzy logic and discrete event simulation. The impact of guarantees in BOT projects, success factors in Vietnamese projects, selecting hybrid concrete structural frames and the ethics of Hong Kong's surveyors are the other subjects in a issue whose subjects are as wide ranging as the authors are dispersed.

The papers in this edition are as follows:

Ison, Dainty and Wall take up the challenge that London City Centre construction sites have in not being granted exemptions from congestion charges. A case study of a live construction project is used to illustrate the impact of congestion charging. But far from joining the industry's campaign for exemption the authors conclude that the impact is “benign”. They also observe the industry's inability to lobby effectively for exemptions which means that as other cities introduce congestion charges the construction industry is unlikely to gain exemptions.

A set of conclusions that is unlikely to make the authors popular in the industry.

Wibowo examines guarantees in build-operate- transfer (BOT) projects. The guarantors are usually host governments who may not understand the liabilities when issuing guarantees. Wibowo examines the financial impact of the guarantees from the perspective of the government and project sponsor. An Indonesian BOT toll road project is used as a case study. Simulation was also used to examine the impact of different types of guarantees and guarantees are compared to subsidies in determining which lessens project risk.

Long, Ogunlana and Lan studied the success factors of large construction projects in Vietnam. The authors were seeking to understand why some projects were more successful than others and as a result to develop guidelines to manage Vietnamese construction projects.

Soetanto, Dainty, Glass and Price attempt to develop criteria for assessing the performance of hybrid concrete structural frames. The objective of this work is to assist in the early decisions on structural frames. The data sources for this work was literature and UK based practioners.

Zhang, Li and Tam present the research community with a possible advancement in modelling vagueness, imprecision and subjectivity in the estimation of activity duration. Slowly the research community is chiselling away at planners judgement in an effort to make it more structured and scientific. The authors offer the combination of fuzzy set theory and discrete event simulation as the next step forward. Time will tell whether this proposal takes us forward.

Liu, Fellows and Ng examine the perspectives of ethics amongst Hong Kong's surveyors. The authors put forward the notion that ethical behaviours have an impact on the final project outcome. In their work they identify differences between the public and private sector and observe that a large number of their survey respondents were uncertain of the presence of ethical codes.

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