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Article
Publication date: 19 March 2021

Kobra Gharouni Jafari, Esmatullah Noorzai and M. Reza Hosseini

This paper aims to explore the potential capabilities of the application of computing features (CFs) in resolving the most common issues that adversely affect performance…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the potential capabilities of the application of computing features (CFs) in resolving the most common issues that adversely affect performance in architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) projects.

Design/methodology/approach

Through a comprehensive review of the literature, 10 most significant CFs were identified. Also, the 15 most prevalent issues in AEC projects (AECIs), for which computers can provide remedial solutions, were determined and categorized into three phases of design, construction and operation. Potential impacts of each CF on handling AECIs in each of the three stages were assessed based on experts’ perceptions.

Findings

CFs are ranked based on their potential on solving the identified AECIs. So too, the order of the most common AECIs is provided in terms of their disposition for being solved by CFs. In this regard, findings reveal that the most effective CF in addressing AECIs is “artificial intelligence” and the most solvable AECI by using CFs is “increased costs and poor budgeting.” Furthermore, the most appropriate CF to handle each AECI is specified, as a result of which, it is inferred CFs are more effective in handling operation-related issues, compared to design, construction phases.

Practical implications

The results can provide a profound insight into software/tool selection based on features that enable technological tools and programs to handle AECIs in the three major phases of projects. Moreover, technology providers and vendors are provided with a benchmark to supply products according to the demands of the AEC industry. The study provides a readily available point of reference for practitioners in selecting various CFs for handling common AECIs that affect their projects.

Originality/value

A large body of research is available on the evaluation of various computer-based technologies and tools. Nevertheless, little, if any, study exists that explores the potential of underlying CFs of these technologies in addressing endemic problems across various stages of AEC projects. This study is one of the first in its kind that shifts to exploring various CFs, as the main enablers of computer technologies, establish links between these CFs and common issues of projects and assesses the potential of various CFs in addressing common problems of construction projects.

Details

Construction Innovation , vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 24 February 2021

Petra Bosch-Sijtsema, Christina Claeson-Jonsson, Mikael Johansson and Mattias Roupe

This paper aims to focus on 11 digital technologies (i.e. building information modeling, artificial intelligence and machine learning, 3D scanning, sensors…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to focus on 11 digital technologies (i.e. building information modeling, artificial intelligence and machine learning, 3D scanning, sensors, robots/automation, digital twin, virtual reality, 3D printing, drones, cloud computing and self-driving vehicles) that are portrayed in future trend reports and hype curves. The study concentrates on the current usage and knowledge of digital technologies in the Swedish architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry to gain an insight in the possible expectations and future trajectory of these digital technologies.

Design/methodology/approach

The study applies an abductive approach which is based on three different types of methods. These methods are a literature and document study which focused on 11 digital technologies, two workshops with industry (13 participants) and an online survey (N = 84).

Findings

The paper contributes to a current state analysis of the Swedish AEC industry concerning digital technologies and discusses the trajectory of these technologies for the AEC industry. The paper identifies hype factors, in which the knowledge of a digital technology is related to its usage. From the hype factors, four zones that show different stages of digital technology usage and maturity in the industry are induced.

Originality/value

The contribution of the paper is twofold. The paper shows insight into opportunities, the current barriers, use and knowledge of digital technologies for the different actors in the AEC industry. Furthermore, the study shows that the AEC industry is behind the traditional Gartner hype curves and contributes with defining four zones for digital technologies for the Swedish AEC industry: confusion, excitement, experimentation and integration.

Details

Construction Innovation , vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 4 June 2019

Ruoyu Jin, Patrick Xiaowei Zou, Bo Li, Poorang Piroozfar and Noel Painting

University students are the future driving forces in and leaders of the architectural, engineering and construction (AEC) industry advancement. Although BIM pedagogical…

Abstract

Purpose

University students are the future driving forces in and leaders of the architectural, engineering and construction (AEC) industry advancement. Although BIM pedagogical studies have been performed in different institutions, there has not been sufficient research providing a global perspective of BIM education and students’ perceptions toward BIM practice and application following their learning progress. The purpose of this paper is to adopt student samples from Swinburne University of Technology (SUT, Australia), Wenzhou University (WZU, China) and University of Brighton (UK) as three case studies to investigate the BIM practice and application-related perceptions and motivations.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on the thorough understanding of the BIM pedagogical delivery including teaching contents and assessment methods among the three institutions, a questionnaire survey approach was adopted to collect AEC students’ perceptions of BIM. Within each selected case, statistical analysis was conducted to investigate both the overall sample and subgroup differences regarding students’ opinions on BIM’s functions (e.g. as a 3D visualization tool) and BIM usefulness in various industry professions, their motivation in BIM-related jobs and their perceptions of challenges encountered in BIM practice and application. Multiple factors influencing BIM learners’ perceptions were discussed, such as pedagogical assessment approach, and individual factors (e.g. disciplines).

Findings

The results showed that students were able to discern the latest industry practices and critical thinking in BIM movements. For example, SUT students perceived more challenges from the government legislation or incentive policies, which was consistent with Australia’s BIM policy movement. WZU students tended to have less positive views on BIM usefulness. The results also indicated fewer differences regarding perceived challenges among students from these three institutions.

Originality/value

This study contributed to the body of knowledge in managerial BIM by focusing on learners’ perceptions from the perspective of students’ understanding, motivation and individual views of BIM, which were insightful to both BIM educators and employers. By initiating the framework of BIM learning process and its influence factors, the current study serves as a point of reference to continue the future work in strengthening the connection between institutional BIM education and industry practical needs worldwide.

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Article
Publication date: 23 February 2021

Choeu Tshepisho Makabate, Innocent Musonda, Chioma Sylvia Okoro and Nicholas Chileshe

Building information modelling (BIM) has had a significant impact on the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) sector in the past several years. However, not…

Abstract

Purpose

Building information modelling (BIM) has had a significant impact on the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) sector in the past several years. However, not much is published concerning small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) adopting BIM in the construction industry. To address this knowledge gap, a complete and in-depth literature review of the adoption of BIM by SMEs in the AEC sector is conducted in this study. The paper also provides a comprehensive review of the mainstream studies of adoption of BIM in the AEC organisations.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a five-stage literature review, 54 articles on the adoption of BIM by SMEs from the period 2009 to 2019 were critically analysed from the following three perspectives: (1) the number of articles produced; (2) the research focus and (3) the author's contributions. The techniques of the visualisation of similarities (VOSviewer) software were used to analyse the citation networks of the 54 articles as identified.

Findings

From the analysis, it was established that the number of studies on BIM adoption by SMEs in the reviewed journals has not been increasing and not many articles are available. The finding makes the argument that BIM adoption by SMEs is not a focus point but rather the adoption and implementation of BIM is generalised in the AEC sector. In addition, the results revealed that most of the published articles come from the United Kingdom (UK). However, this finding is hardly surprising due to the requirements in the UK, which have made the adoption of BIM mandatory on all publicly funded projects and are at level 2 BIM. The other highly ranked countries by origins of studies on the adoption of BIM by SMEs were found to be Australia and the United States of America (USA), all of which are developed nations or economies. Some key BIM in SME research trends (adoption, enforcement, benefits, strategies, skills gap, awareness, education and training, and technology) were identified and evaluated.

Research limitations/implications

The results presented in this journal are only applicable to SMEs in the AEC sector. As a result of little available literature on the adoption of BIM in developing countries, the articles have been drawn from developed countries. The dataset was mainly extracted from the Scopus database for the analysis.

Originality/value

An accomplished series content analysis of the implementation and adoption of BIM by SMEs from international construction journals were reported. The study makes significant and emergent contribution by building on the foundation of BIM research in SMEs as well as providing a reference point for the interpretation of findings, as well as directions for future research.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 29 April 2021

Abdulmalik Abubakar Badamasi, Komal Raj Aryal, Usman Umar Makarfi and Mansir Dodo

Virtual reality (VR) offers unique features of a three-dimensional (3D) model during early design stages in the virtual environment with immersive functions. Although the…

Abstract

Purpose

Virtual reality (VR) offers unique features of a three-dimensional (3D) model during early design stages in the virtual environment with immersive functions. Although the potential of VR is to increase the effectiveness and productivity of the project phases from initial concept design to detailed design preparation. VR adoption in the United Kingdom (UK) Architectural Engineering and Construction (AEC) sector is slow compared to other sectors. This research focuses on ascertaining the drivers and barriers of VR in construction projects in the UK.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopts an online survey design. It uses Bristol Online Survey (BOS) to create a structured questionnaire that is used to assess UK construction professionals using a convenience sampling technique. Therefore, researcher uses descriptive and inferential technique for data analysis and presentation based on Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) to analyze the questionnaire.

Findings

The research findings revealed the most significant barriers to VR adoption in UK construction industry were lack of skills/expertise and cultural change. Hence, the main drivers of VR adoption as rated by the professionals in the UK construction industry are improved safety, improved quality and improved productivity.

Practical implications

The identification and assessment of the drivers and barriers to VR adoption could advance VR adoption among construction professionals and other stakeholders of the UK AEC sector. This could also be extended to developing countries, given the status of VR as being in the developing stage.

Originality/value

This study provides valuable insights to construction professionals and stakeholders to plan actions that could enhance the drivers and mitigate the barriers of VR. This study's main contribution is to group and classify various drivers and barriers into easily understood categories, in order to potentiate the drivers and reduce the barriers effectively. The groupings could be used as benchmarks in similar studies in developing countries.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 1 May 2019

Stina Månsson

This paper aims to explore what is known in the body of literature on sustainability professionals in the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry to…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore what is known in the body of literature on sustainability professionals in the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry to support the formulation of research questions for future studies.

Design/Methodology/Approach

This was done through a systematic literature review in Scopus and Web of Science. In the literature search, 22 journal papers were selected to be included in the review because of their relevance to sustainability professionals, professional roles and environmental practices in the AEC industry.

Findings

Key characteristics of the papers such as methodology and theory are mapped, followed by main findings on how the sustainability profession and sustainability professionals’ roles are studied within the body of literature. The review shows that the topic of sustainability professionals in the AEC industry is currently under-researched and under-theorised. Specifically, there is a lack of in-depth studies on sustainability professionals’ roles and agency.

Research Limitations/Implications

By providing an overview of the current literature on sustainability professionals in the AEC industry, it is possible to identify research gaps to formulate research questions for future studies.

Practical Implications

This is important as collaboration between professions, including sustainability professionals, is believed to be the key for a successful shift towards sustainability; furthering the understanding of sustainability professionals’ role is, therefore, central.

Originality/Value

This paper is the first systematic literature review on sustainability professionals in the AEC industry.

Details

10th Nordic Conference on Construction Economics and Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-051-1

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Article
Publication date: 2 September 2019

Shenghua Zhou, S. Thomas Ng, Sang Hoon Lee, Frank J. Xu and Yifan Yang

In the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry, technology developers have difficulties in fully understanding user needs due to the high domain…

Abstract

Purpose

In the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry, technology developers have difficulties in fully understanding user needs due to the high domain knowledge threshold and the lack of effective and efficient methods to minimise information asymmetry between technology developers and AEC users. The paper aims to discuss this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

A synthetic approach combining domain knowledge and text mining techniques is proposed to help capture user needs, which is demonstrated using building information modelling (BIM) apps as a case. The synthetic approach includes the: collection and cleansing of BIM apps’ attribute data and users’ comments; incorporation of domain knowledge into the collected comments; performance of a sentiment analysis to distinguish positive and negative comments; exploration of the relationships between user sentiments and BIM apps’ attributes to unveil user preferences; and establishment of a topic model to identify problems frequently raised by users.

Findings

The results show that those BIM app categories with high user interest but low sentiments or supplies, such as “reality capture”, “interoperability” and “structural simulation and analysis”, should deserve greater efforts and attention from developers. BIM apps with continual updates and of small size are more preferred by users. Problems related to the “support for new Revit”, “import & export” and “external linkage” are most frequently complained by users.

Originality/value

The main contributions of this work include: the innovative application of text mining techniques to identify user needs to drive BIM apps development; and the development of a synthetic approach to orchestrating domain knowledge, text mining techniques (i.e. sentiment analysis and topic modelling) and statistical methods in order to help extract user needs for promoting the success of emerging technologies in the AEC industry.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 27 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 9 August 2018

Ayman Ahmed Ezzat Othman and Mohamed Hesham Madbouly Khalil

Architecture is classified as one of the creative industries worldwide. However, it is plagued with a number of problems that confine its creativity towards developing…

Abstract

Purpose

Architecture is classified as one of the creative industries worldwide. However, it is plagued with a number of problems that confine its creativity towards developing innovative solutions that fulfil society needs. One of these pressing problems is the lack of creativity due to the non-utilisation of talented architects. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of lean talent management (LTM) as a novel approach to increase creativity in architectural design firms (ADFs).

Design/methodology/approach

In order to achieve the above-mentioned aim, a mixed qualitative and quantitative methodology is designed to accomplish three objectives. First, reviewing literature to investigate the concepts of creative industries, motivation, demotivation, talent management (TM), talents utilisation (TU), lean thinking (LT) and lean innovation (LI). Second, presenting and analysing five case studies to explore the integration between TM, LT and LI in real-life context to overcome barriers of creativity. Finally, analysing the results of a survey questionnaire conducted with a representative sample of Egyptian ADFs to evaluate their perception and application of TM as a facilitator for creativity.

Findings

The five barriers of creativity encompassed lack of motivation in ADFs and demotivation and lack of TU in ADFs and Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry. TM facilitated motivation and eliminated six demotivating factors. The seventh factor was eliminated through LT. In AEC industry, TU was achieved through LI with five considerations. In ADFs, TU can be achieved through LTM. However, two additional barriers have been identified for further investigation. Egyptian ADFs failed increasing creativity with TM solely. Hence, a LTM framework is required.

Research limitations/implications

Although the study focussed on architecture as a case for creative industries and targeted Egyptian ADFs, the application of LTM is to be applied at any industry that is talent-based although barriers related to the design process could vary.

Originality/value

This paper presents an innovative approach through discussing the integration of lean concepts into TM towards increasing creativity in ADFs. This ideology has received scant attention in construction literature and is the first of its kind in the architectural field. The proposed ideas represent a synthesis that is novel and creative in thought and adds value to the knowledge in a manner that has not previously occurred.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 25 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2018

Jack Steven Goulding, Volkan Ezcan and Monty Sutrisna

The paper aims to investigate the employee–stakeholder engagement on business performance. A psychosocial approach was used to evaluate employees’ perception and role…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to investigate the employee–stakeholder engagement on business performance. A psychosocial approach was used to evaluate employees’ perception and role engagement on organisational performance, cognisant of: strategy development; leadership; fiscal acuity; employees’ skills, empowerment; supply chain relationships; external stakeholders and wider societal beneficiaries.

Design/methodology/approach

This research is context-bound to the Turkish construction industry. Findings generated from literature established a set of evidenced-based priorities for further investigation. A case study approach was conducted with three large architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) organisations to define psychosocial diffusion indicators and priorities for future uptake.

Findings

Initial findings on psychosocial diffusion indicators and their impact on business performance are presented through a psychosocial diffusion model. Three interconnected facets are proffered for future uptake: capability (responsiveness), capability (flexibility) and capability (competence).

Research limitations/implications

Findings are exclusively bound to the sample frame in question. No attempt has been made to undertake detailed cross-analysis/correlation to support internal/external consistency, validity or reliability.

Practical implications

Organisations are able to reflect on their core business strategy to appreciate how psychosocial diffusion can be operationalised.

Social implications

This work impinges on social factors embedded within (and across) organisational boundaries, including the AEC supply chain. It also relates to employer/employee relationships, psychological functioning and employee well-being.

Originality/value

Originality rests with the identification of construction-related psychosocial indicators. It contributes to the wider body of knowledge on embedding psychosocial indicators into organisational systems and processes, adding further insight into systems thinking and business transformation.

Details

Journal of Financial Management of Property and Construction, vol. 23 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-4387

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Article
Publication date: 2 November 2020

Emmanuel Imuetinyan Aghimien, Lerato Millicent Aghimien, Olutomilayo Olayemi Petinrin and Douglas Omoregie Aghimien

This paper aims to present the result of a scientometric analysis conducted using studies on high-performance computing in computational modelling. This was done with a…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present the result of a scientometric analysis conducted using studies on high-performance computing in computational modelling. This was done with a view to showcasing the need for high-performance computers (HPC) within the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry in developing countries, particularly in Africa, where the use of HPC in developing computational models (CMs) for effective problem solving is still low.

Design/methodology/approach

An interpretivism philosophical stance was adopted for the study which informed a scientometric review of existing studies gathered from the Scopus database. Keywords such as high-performance computing, and computational modelling were used to extract papers from the database. Visualisation of Similarities viewer (VOSviewer) was used to prepare co-occurrence maps based on the bibliographic data gathered.

Findings

Findings revealed the scarcity of research emanating from Africa in this area of study. Furthermore, past studies had placed focus on high-performance computing in the development of computational modelling and theory, parallel computing and improved visualisation, large-scale application software, computer simulations and computational mathematical modelling. Future studies can also explore areas such as cloud computing, optimisation, high-level programming language, natural science computing, computer graphics equipment and Graphics Processing Units as they relate to the AEC industry.

Research limitations/implications

The study assessed a single database for the search of related studies.

Originality/value

The findings of this study serve as an excellent theoretical background for AEC researchers seeking to explore the use of HPC for CMs development in the quest for solving complex problems in the industry.

Details

Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology , vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1726-0531

Keywords

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