Knowledge Management      for Sustainable       Construction    Competitiveness

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Knowledge Management for Sustainable Construction Competitiveness


The primary aims of this proposed comprehensive study on knowledge management (KM) are to investigate the challenges associated with the management of knowledge resources and capabilities for construction. Also, to establish how effective the strategies for managing these resources and capabilities are at contributing to project success and sustained organisational competitiveness. The targeted objectives for addressing the above aims are:

  • To identify the specific features of knowledge production and application in the construction industry – i.e. identifying what are the key types of knowledge resources and capabilities relevant to the sector (e.g. theoretical construction, engineering and design knowledge, plus experiential knowledge including physical [motor neurone] skills, etc.).
  • To investigate and document the main challenges (including economic, social, technological, environmental) associated with the implementation, exploitation and embedding of KM practices within construction organisations of varying sizes and specialisms.
  • To examine and document the different approaches (including processes and technologies) used for knowledge production, absorption (across boundaries), capture & retrieval, transfer, sharing, exploitation and for measuring and comparing KM performance; together with their relative effectiveness as knowledge management tools. It will also investigate and document the vagaries of factors that lead to successful KM practices in different sizes of organisations and in organisations that are at different levels of KM implementation.
  • To explore knowledge management practices in other sectors (e.g. manufacturing, finance, IT, retail) with the view of documenting good and best practices for the benefit of the construction industry.
  • To examine the backgrounds and on-going training and skills of knowledge management specialists. Map out their career paths, examine and document the impact of this new role on the future of the construction industry
  • Produce a study report, which could be used as a policy document and would influence the direction of both government and those concerned with improving the industry’s performance.
  • Produce a training material on KM and disseminate the outputs of the study on KM widely in the industry.
  • The proposed programme of research will engage partners, users and beneficiaries from small, medium and large organisations as well as clients, contractors and suppliers. The results will deliver a substantial and up to date body of knowledge in the subject area from varying industrial perspectives, as well as from previous studies of KM and current KM practice. This will help identify benefits that can accrue from effective knowledge management, and will provide training materials, reports, workshops and publications that will help raise awareness of the value of KM and how it can be successfully developed within construction organisations.

Copyright Professor Charles Egbu (2008), All Rights Reserved