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Article
Publication date: 9 January 2019

Jukka Majava, Harri Haapasalo and Kirsi Aaltonen

The “big room” concept and lean philosophy have become increasingly popular in the construction industry. Visual control is a central part of lean philosophy and the big…

Abstract

Purpose

The “big room” concept and lean philosophy have become increasingly popular in the construction industry. Visual control is a central part of lean philosophy and the big room concept; its aim is to improve information flow, joint problem-solving and real-time decision-making. Visual control facilitates effective project management by providing information on what work is performed and why, customer requirements, deadlines, work status and potential problems. This study aims to explore how visualisation supports project management and control in a big room and the factors that facilitate good visual control.

Design/methodology/approach

This research is based on the case study method, and the objective is to elaborate the current understanding of factors that affect visual control. The study includes a literature review and an empirical study of a large construction project.

Findings

The results indicate that many factors facilitate visual control. Despite the importance of facilities and tools, communication and teamwork are identified as the key factors. On a broader level, the results indicate a need for a holistic approach in developing visual management strategies and practices in the construction industry and in complex projects in particular.

Research limitations/implications

A single case may not be able to offer a generalised picture of this complex topic. However, the study provides novel insights for practitioners and researchers interested in the development of visual control and big rooms. Future research topics are also proposed.

Originality/value

While previous studies have identified many elements of successful big room implementation – including integration and early involvement, information sharing, tools and facilities – this study focusses specifically on the factors that facilitate visual control.

Details

Construction Innovation , vol. 19 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 28 January 2014

Antti Puurunen, Jukka Majava and Pekka Kess

Ensuring the sufficient service level is essential for critical materials in industrial maintenance. This study aims to evaluate the use of statistically imperfect data in…

Abstract

Purpose

Ensuring the sufficient service level is essential for critical materials in industrial maintenance. This study aims to evaluate the use of statistically imperfect data in a stochastic simulation-based inventory optimization where items' failure characteristics are derived from historical consumption data, which represents a real-life situation in the implementation of such an optimization model.

Design/methodology/approach

The risks of undesired shortages were evaluated through a service-level sensitivity analysis. The service levels were simulated within the error of margin of the key input variables by using StockOptim optimization software and real data from a Finnish steel mill. A random sample of 100 inventory items was selected.

Findings

Service-level sensitivity is item specific, but, for many items, statistical imprecision in the input data causes significant uncertainty in the service level. On the other hand, some items seem to be more resistant to variations in the input data than others.

Research limitations/implications

The case approach, with one simulation model, limits the generalization of the results. The possibility that the simulation model is not totally realistic exists, due to the model's normality assumptions.

Practical implications

Margin of error in input data estimation causes a significant risk of not achieving the required service level. It is proposed that managers work to improve the preciseness of the data, while the sensitivity analysis against statistical uncertainty, and a correction mechanism if necessary, should be integrated into optimization models.

Originality/value

The output limitations in the optimization, i.e. service level, are typically stated precisely, but the capabilities of the input data have not been addressed adequately. This study provides valuable insights into ensuring the availability of critical materials.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 114 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

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Article
Publication date: 11 January 2016

Jukka Majava, Pekka Leviäkangas, Tuomo Kinnunen, Pekka Kess and Del Foit

Increasing competition in global markets requires many countries to seek new growth sectors. In addition, the nature of competition is changing. This paper applies the…

Abstract

Purpose

Increasing competition in global markets requires many countries to seek new growth sectors. In addition, the nature of competition is changing. This paper applies the business ecosystem concept and studies San Diego as a spatial health and life sciences ecosystem. The purpose of this paper is to identify issues that should be considered in design of innovation policies and regional industry development.

Design/methodology/approach

The research approach is built on a literature review of business ecosystems and spatial innovation. The empirical study is based on semi-structured interviews, observations, and information gathering and verification during field research.

Findings

The results include a description of the ecosystem structure and dynamics. This paper demonstrates the bottom-up nature of San Diego’s health and life sciences ecosystem without a dominant lead actor, and presents prerequisites for fostering spatial ecosystems.

Research limitations/implications

A single case may not be able to offer a generalized picture of this topic. However, the study raises several considerations for researchers and decision-makers involved in innovation policy design. Future work should extend the study and involve other spatial and substance contexts to compare findings and to pursue a more generic picture of innovation ecosystems and networks.

Originality/value

This paper demonstrates that applying the concept of business ecosystems to the spatial context provides new insights in terms of dynamic mechanisms and factors contributing to economic growth in a particular location. Understanding how to facilitate the creation of successful spatial ecosystems is in the focal point of innovation policies.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. 19 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

Keywords

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