ITcon Vol. 25, pg. 272-286,

Holistically assessing collaborative culture in the AEC industry

submitted:March 2019
revised:March 2019
published:April 2020
editor(s):Jan Karlshøj & Line Leth Christiansen
authors:Sujesh Francis Sujan, Doctoral Candidate,
School of Engineering, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom;

Steve Wynford Jones, Senior Lecturer in Structural Engineering
School of Engineering, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom;

Arto Kiviniemi, Professor of Digital Architecture Design
School of Architecture, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom;

Jacqueline Mary Wheatcroft, Chartered and Practitioner Forensic Psychologist
School of Psychological Sciences, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom;

Bwalimu Mwiya, Lecturer in Construction Management
School of Engineering, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia;
summary:The insufficient understanding and literature on people collaborating in the Architectural-Engineering-Construction (AEC) industry has prompted researchers to investigate this by conducting project-to-project comparisons. A mixed method-based comparison of two construction projects’ design teams was made in order to present factors to be considered in fostering a positive collaborative culture. Client knowledge and involvement, existing relationships between teams, stronger informal collaboration, a decentralised leadership style and the adequate monetary motivation to a firm were found to be most critical. The study also assessed whether the use of holistic analysis methods can quantitatively show the differences between the projects; in particular, which project had a more positive collaborative culture. The perception based method used correlated the variance of perception of the teamwork environment and systemic risk to the projects with a more positive collaborative culture; 80% of constructs (some postulated attribute of people assumed, to reflect in test performance) supported the qualitative data. Additionally, assessments of the personalities of respondents from the project with a more collaborative culture also showed higher collective agreeableness. Findings suggest that projects with more changes, more assumptions made and uncertainty in requirements affect the collaborative culture negatively.
keywords:collaboration, construction industry, social science; personality, holistic analysis; human factor
full text: (PDF file, 0.512 MB)
citation:Sujan S F, Wynford Jones S, Kiviniemi A, Wheatcroft J M, Mwiya B (2020). Holistically assessing collaborative culture in the AEC industry, ITcon Vol. 25, Special issue eWork and eBusiness in Architecture, Engineering and Construction 2018 , pg. 272-286,