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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2003

Steve Rowlinson, Sherif Mohamed and Sum‐Wah Lam

In total, 69 foremen from 13 Hong Kong construction companies were invited to participate in a study designed to investigate foremen’s opinions regarding 27 safety…

Abstract

In total, 69 foremen from 13 Hong Kong construction companies were invited to participate in a study designed to investigate foremen’s opinions regarding 27 safety supervisory tasks. These fell into six categories, including handling new workers, training, safety, discipline, coordinating, and motivating. Results of the survey and subsequent follow‐up interviews showed that over two thirds of foremen claimed that they had the responsibility to perform certain tasks but only half said that they had the authority to perform these tasks. Further interviews and on‐site observations of foremen were then conducted in order to validate the findings by way of case study material. It is concluded that foremen play a key role in ensuring that safety management systems operate effectively. It appears, from the results of the study, that this role is not being performed properly and that the key interface between worker and management, the role of the foreman, is not paid sufficient attention by senior management and is an area requiring urgent attention if Hong Kong’s poor site safety record is to be improved.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 3 January 2017

Steve Rowlinson

This paper aims to review the development of building information modelling (BIM) and integrated project delivery (IPD) in recent years and the process changes that BIM…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to review the development of building information modelling (BIM) and integrated project delivery (IPD) in recent years and the process changes that BIM and IPD require.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative research methodology was applied which involved a comprehensive review of relevant literature leading to a better understanding of the history and development of BIM and IPD. A way forward is suggested for the future development of BIM and IPD.

Findings

The research revealed that the IPD approach is already ingrained within certain organisations and their supply chains. The issues of political will and business desire to change the existing procurement systems are examined. The need for fit with regional and national economic and cultural characteristics is a pre-requisite for successful change. Collaborative working, information exchange and trust only exist within the context of a trusted and reliable building information model that all can access, understand and manage.

Originality/value

This research pointed out that there is a need to overcome the institutional inertia that besets governments and their agencies and suggested that exemplar institutions and their projects are needed to lead the industry by integrating BIM into IPD through process change.

Details

Construction Innovation, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

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Article
Publication date: 20 May 2020

Nipuni Sumanarathna, Bismark Duodu and Steve Rowlinson

The study aims to provide suggestions for project-based firms (PBFs) to create value through the development of social capital, collaborative environment and…

Abstract

Purpose

The study aims to provide suggestions for project-based firms (PBFs) to create value through the development of social capital, collaborative environment and organisational learning (exploratory & exploitative learning). In this regard, a conceptual model is proposed that examines the interrelations between social capital, collaborative environment and exploratory & exploitative learning in the context of PBFs.

Design/methodology/approach

A semi-systematic literature review focussed on interrelations between social capital, exploratory & exploitative learning and collaborative environment was undertaken. Top ranked journals and highly relevant journal articles in the management domain were considered for the review. To analyse literature, the content analysis technique incorporating NVIVO 12 software was adopted.

Findings

Conceptual model suggests that social capital positively affects exploratory & exploitative learning through collaborative environment in PBFs. Three dimensions of social capital (network ties, trust and shared goals) create collaborative environment and collaborative environment enhances organisational learning in PBFs across different levels. Ultimately, social capital, collaborative environment and exploratory & exploitative learning contribute to value creation in PBFs.

Originality/value

Although the relationship between social capital and exploratory & exploitative learning has been researched previously, findings remain inconsistent. This study provides an alternative perspective to discuss this relationship with the proposed mediating construct: collaborative environment. Considering the context of PBFs, a conceptual model was developed to explain the interrelations between social capital, collaborative environment and learning. This study especially discusses collaborative environment as a value creation factor.

Details

The Learning Organization, vol. 27 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-6474

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Article
Publication date: 30 July 2019

Bismark Duodu and Steve Rowlinson

The purpose of this paper is to advance new insights into how internal and external social capital (SC) facets influence exploratory and exploitative innovation directly…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to advance new insights into how internal and external social capital (SC) facets influence exploratory and exploitative innovation directly, and indirectly through absorptive capability (AC), by drawing on the relational and knowledge-based views.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper empirically tests the developed model using 135 survey responses from managers in construction contractor firms. Data were factor analysed, and path estimates determined using partial least squares structural equation modelling to test the hypotheses.

Findings

The results reveal that each social capital (SC) facet has direct benefits for both exploratory and exploitative innovation. The findings also show a mix of full and partial mediation paths between the facets of SC and innovation types through AC.

Originality/value

Extant research linking SC facets with innovation categories is fragmented. Added to this fragmentation is the dearth of studies linking both intra-firm and inter-firm SC with exploratory and exploitative innovation in firms. This paper makes a novel contribution by testing a model of the direct and indirect links (through AC) between internal and external SC and both exploratory and exploitative innovation in the context of construction contractor firms. The findings show how both facets of SC are necessary for exploratory and exploitative innovation. It reveals the types of relationships and capabilities necessary for specific innovation objectives.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. 23 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

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Article
Publication date: 3 October 2018

Azmeri Rahman, Adrian J. Bridge, Steve Rowlinson, Bryan Hubbard and Bo Xia

The purpose of this paper is to present a novel version of Dunning’s eclectic paradigm of internationalisation (OLI framework) to explain both inbound and outbound Foreign…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a novel version of Dunning’s eclectic paradigm of internationalisation (OLI framework) to explain both inbound and outbound Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in multinational contracting.

Design/methodology/approach

The OLI factors and hypothesis are significantly developed to address a weakness in the OLI framework in its application to settings, such as multinational contracting, with extreme heterogeneity arising from extreme location specificity.

Findings

These developments advance Dunning’s seminal contribution and bring this to life in construction research that has barely applied the framework and, when doing so, has focused only on outbound FDI by multinational contractors (MCs).

Research limitations/implications

The power of the OLI framework is increased on explaining and predicting FDI in contexts that exhibit extreme heterogeneity associated with extreme location specificity. Furthermore, the operationalisation of key theories representing the framework’s OLI factors is made far more precise.

Practical implications

Engineering, construction and architectural managers, can now more reliably apply the OLI framework both in MCs’ outbound FDI decisions and in governments’ decisions to attract new MCs – or inbound FDI.

Originality/value

A significant advance is made in the OLI framework in settings with extreme location specificity, along with the operationalisation of key theories associated with the OLI factors, including the first steps to operationalise Coase’s Nobel prize-winning transaction cost thesis.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 25 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 29 April 2019

Bismark Duodu and Steve Rowlinson

Intellectual capital (IC) has been suggested to be a means by which firms develop capabilities that enhance competitive advantage. There is, however, a paucity of…

Abstract

Purpose

Intellectual capital (IC) has been suggested to be a means by which firms develop capabilities that enhance competitive advantage. There is, however, a paucity of empirical research linking IC with innovation in construction firms, leaving the IC–innovation link in such environments unclear. The purpose of this paper is to advance understanding of the relationships between IC components and strategic exploratory and exploitative innovation in construction contractor firms.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample comprised 135 management personnel from construction contractor firms in Hong Kong. Data were collected through a questionnaire survey using validated scales in the literature which were subjected to confirmatory factor analysis. Hierarchical linear regression was used to test the hypotheses while partial least squares structural equation modelling was used for post hoc analysis.

Findings

Social capital (SC) and organisational capital (OC) each have significant positive linear effects on exploratory and exploitative innovation, while human capital (HC) has no direct linear effect on either innovation type. HC, however, affects both exploratory and exploitative innovation through SC or OC. None of the three IC dimensions has a significant quadratic effect on exploratory or exploitative innovation. The findings suggest that in construction contractor firms increases in the accumulation of SC and OC are associated with proportional increases in exploratory and exploitative innovation.

Originality/value

Despite the growth of studies connecting IC to innovation, the link between IC and exploratory and exploitative innovation has focussed on linear effects in units or on radical innovation outcomes. This study makes a novel contextual contribution by exploring both linear and quadratic effects of IC dimensions on strategic exploratory and exploitative innovation processes in construction contractor firms. The insights contribute to advance knowledge on the relationship between IC and innovation categories in different industrial settings.

Details

Journal of Intellectual Capital, vol. 20 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1469-1930

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 1999

JASON MATTHEWS and STEVE ROWLINSON

The philosophy that underpins this paper is that partnering needs the partners to set mutual objectives — these objectives are agreed upon and stipulated within a project…

Abstract

The philosophy that underpins this paper is that partnering needs the partners to set mutual objectives — these objectives are agreed upon and stipulated within a project charter. Objectives within the charter should be regularly reviewed and performance assessed. The question addressed is — can this mechanism, which has proved successful in a commercial context, assist in applying safety legislation, rules and management systems to a construction project? Also, partnering advocates an open and trusting relationship between all parties — can this ‘philosophy’ be used to assist the management of site safety? Implementing the partnering concept in the construction project environment provides an opportunity for the continuous improvement of safety performance. This paper addresses partnering as a concept and draws from examples of partnering in the UK and Hong Kong. A number of characteristics of partnering agreements have been identified that can all assist in promoting safety. These characteristics are: continuous evaluation, the project charter, mutual objectives and team building. The context in which partnering in safety can be undertaken is reviewed and a discussion takes place of how the global trend to move away from prescriptive legislation towards performance‐based legislation in the regulation of safety provides an ideal opportunity to adopt partnering as a methodology for safety improvement.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 6 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 21 June 2011

Yan Ki Fiona Cheung and Steve Rowlinson

The purpose of this paper is to examine, by means of case studies, the mechanisms by which relationships can be managed and by which communication and cooperation can be…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine, by means of case studies, the mechanisms by which relationships can be managed and by which communication and cooperation can be enhanced in sustainable supply chains. The research was predicated on the contention that the development of a sustainable supply chain depends, in part, on the transfer of knowledge and capabilities from the larger players in the supply chain.

Design/methodology/approach

The research adopted a triangulated approach in which quantitative data were collected by questionnaire, interviews were conducted to explore and enrich the quantitative data and case studies were undertaken in order to illustrate and validate the findings. Handy's view of organisational culture, Allen and Meyer's concepts of organisational commitment and Van de Ven and Ferry's measures of organisational structuring have been combined into a model to test and explain how collaborative mechanisms can affect supply chain sustainability.

Findings

It has been shown that the degree of match and mismatch between organisational culture and structure has an impact on staff's commitment level. A sustainable supply chain depends on convergence – that is the match between organisational structuring, organisation culture and organisation commitment.

Research limitations/implications

The study is a proof of concept and three case studies have been used to illustrate the nature of the model developed. Further testing and refinement of the model in practice should be the next step in this research.

Practical implications

The concept of relationship management needs to filter down to all levels in the supply chain if participants are to retain commitment and buy‐in to the relationship. A sustainable supply chain requires proactive relationship management and the development of an appropriate organisational culture, and trust. By legitimising individuals' expectations of the type of culture which is appropriate to their company and empowering employees to address mismatches that may occur, a situation can be created whereby the collaborating organisations develop their competences symbiotically and so facilitate a sustainable supply chain.

Originality/value

The culture/commitment/structure model developed from three separate strands of management thought has proved to be a powerful tool for analysing collaboration in supply chains and explaining how and why some supply chains are sustainable, and others are not.

Details

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 4 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8378

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Article
Publication date: 14 September 2010

Ellen Lau and Steve Rowlinson

The paper aims to report on a thesis completed in 2005 that had relevance to the project management community. The thesis dealt with trust relations in the construction…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to report on a thesis completed in 2005 that had relevance to the project management community. The thesis dealt with trust relations in the construction industry in respect of strategy formulation and to provide a hierarchy model to explain the concept of general trust of the individual and the industry, situational trust, a value‐based trust, inter‐personal and inter‐firm trust via quantitative and qualitative study.

Design/methodology/approach

A pilot study with structured questionnaires and a case study approach are adopted to collect both quantitative and qualitative data from ten projects operating with partnering and non‐partnering approach.

Findings

The findings help to explain trust relations with three issues: a group perspective of value‐based trust; the perception of trust by clients and contractors in the construction industry; and the hierarchy of a trust model based on the moral, social and work dimensions of trust.

Research limitations/implications

The paper indicates that the value of clients and contractors in the construction industry are different and affects the overall project performance. For multiple parties working therefore requires identification of the deficient areas or constraints when managing differences among people. Further work needs to be done in respect of the behavioural outcome.

Practical implications

This theoretical framework is used as the foundation of a trust model (the analytical hierarchy process model) to evaluate the types of trust prevailing at the time of measurement. The model can be used in any situation requiring understanding of the relationships among the parties under investigation. This paper puts the subject in context by using project case studies, which provide a better understanding of trust in a situation involving multiple parties.

Originality/value

The thesis is of value to both practitioners and academics/researchers in the management development of construction projects in a multi‐party working situation by modeling in a hierarchy process of the factor components affecting trust relations.

Details

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 3 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8378

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2005

Damrong Chantawit, Bonaventura H.W. Hadikusumo, Chotchai Charoenngam and Steve Rowlinson

Safety planning in construction project management is separated from other planning functions, such as scheduling. This separation creates difficulties for safety…

Abstract

Safety planning in construction project management is separated from other planning functions, such as scheduling. This separation creates difficulties for safety engineers to analyse what, when, why and where safety measures are needed for preventing accidents. Another problem occurs due to the conventional practice of representing project designs using two‐dimensional (2D) drawings. In this practice, an engineer has to convert the 2D drawings into three‐dimensional (3D) mental pictures which is a tedious task. Since this conversion is already difficult, combining these 2D drawings with safety plans increases the difficulty. In order to address the problems, 4DCAD‐Safety is proposed. This paper discusses the design and development of 4DCAD‐Safety application and testing its usefulness in terms of assisting users in analysing what, when, where and why safety measures are needed.

Details

Construction Innovation, vol. 5 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

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