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Sustainability - Can it have a place in todays Construction World - Essay Example

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The construction industry is an indicator of the health of an economy besides providing a vital requirement for human habitation and commerce. This industry, which had an output of 58 billion in 1998 representing about 10% of the GDP of the United Kingdom is key to the performance of the national economy and deserves attention.
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Download file to see previous pages However, prices have been levelling off or coming down since 2004. Any drop in prices of real estate is bound to affect consumer spending, since a large amount is financed by loans taken out against the increased value of real estate. The present scenario of low interest rates, and high oil and home prices has the look of the 1970's just before the worldwide recession set in. This time the inflation may not be so bad because the governments and banks are less likely to make the blunders they did in the 1970's and also the large work force of developing economies like China and India will help hold down the labour wage rates (Woodall).
In July 1998, the 'Construction Task Force' led by Sir John Egan produced its report Rethinking Construction (Duffy, 2002). The need for the Industry to improve its performance was highlighted and it was suggested that the then current thinking and practices need to be drastically changed. The report highlighted the need for application of best practices to
As a demonstration of the changes, a series of 'Demonstration Projects' showcasing the changed thinking, should be undertaken. The report suggested a need for a 'movement for change' that would be a dynamic, inspirational and non-institutionalised movement to bring about a radical improvement. The report led to further action with the launch of the 'M4I' Movement for Innovation in November 1998 (Azobuild).
'Constructing the Team' was the title of the report of the team commissioned by Government and Industry and led by Sir Michael Latham. This report emphasised the need for all elements of the Industry, namely, architecture, tendering, procurement and construction to work together as a team to revitalise the Industry and to engender high quality and high efficiency (Wikipedia).
In this situation it is vital to understand the problems faced by the construction Industry (Industry) and the way forward to sustainability.
Research Objectives:
The objectives of the research would be to analyse the problems facing the Industry towards meeting the vision of the Egan and Latham reports and to suggest ways for improvement in current practices and systems. Special emphasis shall be placed on the need for improvement in costs, time and reduction in defects. The research shall focus on the team approach where all elements of the Industry form a cohesive whole to deliver quality product at the lowest cost and in the shortest time.
Scope of the Research:
The research shall be confined to the Industry and its primary clients, namely the housing aspect. Other types of construction where the client commissions a building or other civil construction in order to carry on some other business activity are specifically excluded from the scope of the study. The report shall specifically address itself to the basic questions raised in the reports of the Egan and Latham committees on the industry having to readdress itself to focusing on becoming client targeted, integration into teams throughout the supply chain and developing a respect for people.
Research Methods:
The objectives of the research shall be achieved by following a structured approach consisting of the following steps:
1. A detailed survey ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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