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A Almohsen, Janaka Ruwanpura

Logistics Management in Construction Industry

Abstract: The construction industry is often slower to adopt new technologies than other industries. Yet the construction industry shall embrace these technologies sufficiently in order to keep up with advances in other trades. One of the most crucial elements in construction management is productivity. And the adopting of new technologies such as mobile-based application can increase construction project productivity in such areas as materials management, tool use time, and labour motivations. Most of these aspects have been thoroughly investigated in academia; however, logistics management and its contribution to construction productivity have been insufficiently investigated, especially with respect to the use of advanced technologies. In this paper, we propose to develop a new platform to utilize modern technologies in the construction industry. Hence, the main objective of this paper is to introduce mobile-based application technologies into construction industry that will improve construction productivity by enhancing logistics management practices. The use of this model will not only help increase productivity in the construction industry but also it will make this industry more competitive with other industries. In order to achieve the main the goal of the paper, different building construction sites have been selected from which to collect data using direct observation, interviews and questionnaires. In order to ensure a high quality result, all participants were selected based on their relationship to the subject being examined. By using the outcomes of the data analysis to identify a potential solution, a computerized logistical management model was developed to examine how to enhance construction productivity and to improve logistics management practices. Many positive opinions have been granted form different constriction experts. Facilitating the communications between such project participants as contactors, subcontractors and suppliers is another expected result. Also, the model would help in organizing the schedule for the use of such heavy equipment as cranes.

Keywords: logistics management, advanced mobile-based application technologies, construction materials and equipment.

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Series: w78:2011 (browse)
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A Redmond, M Alshawi, R West, A Zarli

A Critical Review of BIM Assessment Practices for a Construction Management Module

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Series: w78:2013 (browse)
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A. Guerriero, L. Johannsen & S. Kubicki

Designing IT services for the Construction Industry. Lessons learnt for Selection of Validation Techniques

Abstract: Setting up collaborative working practices is a major stake in construction projects because each project is specific in terms of actors involved, documents produced and building elements designed. In such contexts the use of IT groupware tools to improve collaboration and their efficient appropriation by AEC practitioners is really a challenge. Designing such innovative collaboration-support services is an issue largely addressed in the scientific community especially to identify the factors of success/failure of the tools, but also to identify the scientific experimental approaches underlying it. This article describes five case studies of cooperation-support IT developments and for each of them the validation techniques used. It suggests an analytic framework distinguishing between 1) research project aims, 2) working practices and 3) IT developments types. Finally it introduces three experimental levels to be achieved in various research projects types and describes their related experimental properties.

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Full text: content.pdf (274,910 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2009 (browse)
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Alvise Simondetti

Designer’s toolkit 2020: a vision for the practice

Abstract: Designer’s toolkit is rapidly changing and design practices need a shared vision of what the short, me-dium and long term might be. With this in mind we interviewed twenty-four thought leaders in the design community worldwide. Four big ideas emerged from the interviews: transferring technologies from other industries has provided great bene-fits, but it has also generated the need to transfer processes; changes in the way we build drives changes in the de-signer’s desktop, including the representations that designers use to communicate; greater gains are achieved by focus-sing on the interplay of specialised algorithms; “just on time” design data improves design. Four possible contexts for the designer’s toolkit are described: the proprietor aimed at increasing productivity, the open-source aimed at increasing IT driven creativity, either more or less engaged with fabrication. Finally, the paper concludes by proposing what designers ought to be doing today. Actions include educating specialist toolmakers, custodian and math modellers; integrating computer controlled machine workshops into designers’ project spaces; the automation of repetitive design tasks; supporting communities around software tools and store project data according to geospatial co-ordinates.

Keywords: Design community, technology transfer, process transfer, designer's desktop, representation, communication

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Full text: content.pdf (451,568 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2007 (browse)
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Andresen J L

Cost and benefit assessments of IT systems in the construction industry

Abstract: This paper presents the results of four case studies that focus on cost and benefit assessments of IT systems in the Danish construction industry. The primary objectives in the case studies have been to (a) explore the difficulties with evaluating IT systems in the construction industry, (b) complete evaluations on particular IT systems in companies from the construction industry using four different IT evaluation methodologies and, ultimately, (c) develop a framework for how to select an IT evaluation method in different IT evaluation situations. The case studies are conducted as a part of a three-year Ph.D. project in order to collect the necessary data to fulfil the objectives stated in the Ph.D. project. The overall objective of the Ph.D. project is how to improve the knowledge and use of IT systems in the construction industry. To achieve this aim the Ph.D. project focuses on how construction companies can increase their knowledge about costs and benefits in their different IT applications by evaluating future IT investments and current IT systems. Specifically, the Ph.D. project focuses on developing a framework for how to select an appropriate IT evaluation method among the many available methods. Earlier in the Ph.D. project a questionnaire survey was completed analysing the current state (1999) of IT evaluation practices in the Danish construction industry. In the four case studies the following IT systems were evaluated: · An electronic document management system called Documentum · Upgrading AutoCad 14 to AutoCad 2000 · Two different ProjectWeb systems The case studies are completed in collaboration with four Danish [RH1] companies based on IT evaluation situations identified in the companies. The construction companies in the case studies comprise three large consulting engineers (Rambøll, Cowi and NIRAS) and one large contractor (Højgaard and Schultz). In each case the IT evaluation situation is identified and described in detail. Four different IT evaluation methods, each representing a larger group of IT evaluation methods, have been used and these are: · Measuring the Benefits of IT Innovation (developed by Construct IT in UK) · Information Economics (developed by M. M. Parker and R. J. Benson) · Net Present Value (unknown origin) · Critical Success Factors (J. Rockart) The case studies provide some hard data on the costs and benefits (both quantitative and qualitative) of the evaluated IT systems. The collected data can be used to create the basis for comparison in other similar cases (although one has to be aware that the data are very context dependent) and the result of the IT evaluations is in itself very interesting. Perhaps more interesting is the data collected about the IT evaluation process. This comprises, among other things, data on the usefulness of the evaluation methods in each of the IT evaluation situations and the identified strengths and weaknesses of the four IT evaluation methods. Lastly the four case studies are compared with some case studies conducted in UK during a six months stay at the University of Salford. The case studies in the UK were conducted in collaboration with another Ph.D. student, Nick Bunyan, on some large contractors (Costain, Alfred McAlpine and Taylor Woodrow). The case studies in the UK were using the IT evaluation method “Measuring the Benefits of IT Innovation”. This enables an international comparison between UK and Denmark to be carried out.

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Full text: content.pdf (183,662 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2001 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.communication (0.028296) class.economic (0.020015) class.store (0.013421)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by CSIR Building and Construction Technology. The assistance of the editors, Mr. Gustav Coetzee and Mr. Frances Boshoff, is gratefully appreciated.


Antonio Grilo, Ricardo Jardim-Goncalves, Adolfo Steiger-Garcao

A methodology using domain ontology and SOA for better interoperability in AEC mass customization

Abstract: Today, the OMG’s Model Driven Architecture (MDA) makes available an open approach to write specifi-cations and develop applications, separating the application and business functionality from the platform technology. As well, the Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) establishes a software architectural concept that defines the use of services to support the requirements of software users, making them available as independent services accessible in a standardized way. Together, these two architectures seem to provide a suitable framework to improve construction company’s competitiveness through the adoption of a standard-based extended environment, challenging and enhanc-ing the interoperability between computer systems and applications in industry. Nevertheless, Domain Ontologies (DO) have been recognized more and more as a challenging mechanism to bridge knowledge. The paper, after illustrating the general motivations the construction companies have to adopt open architectures to achieve interoperability for extended and collaborative enterprise practices, presents the emerging model driven and service oriented architectures. Then, it describes an innovative methodology for better interoperability in AEC mass customization. The paper finishes with discussion and concluding remarks concerning the empirical results obtained from the pilot demonstrator.

Keywords: interoperability, mass customization, domain ontology, SOA, MDA

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Full text: content.pdf (160,235 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2007 (browse)
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Arif A A, Karam A H

A comparative study: with insight into the use of IT in local architectural practices

Abstract: This paper reports on the use of Information Technologies (IT) in the South African building industry. It offers an insight into the architecture profession, a profession that plays a major role in the construction sector. The analysis is based on the results of a survey conducted in the Western Cape Province during the year 2000. In an attempt to uncover the similarities and differences between the local context and the international one, this paper outlines a few elements of IT for comparison. After a brief introduction to the IT map of South Africa, the analysis concentrates on the following four issues: Response and Respondents, General IT usage, Use of Computer-Aided-Design (CAD) and Use of Networks. Each of these issues is framed in both the local and the international contexts. Despite the shortcomings of using different questions with different emphasis when referring to other surveys, it is still believed that reporting on local practices is not extremely meaningful in isolation. It is hoped that this type of analysis will serve to unravel the particulars of the construction industry in South Africa providing its counterparts with a new perspective.

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Full text: content.pdf (141,121 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2003 (browse)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the University of Auckland. The assistance of the editor who provided the full texts and the structured metadata, Dr. Robert Amor, is gratefully appreciated.


Arif A, Karam A

Architectural Practices and Their Use of IT in the Western Cape Province, South Africa

Abstract: The application of Information Technologies (IT) is moving forward with tremendous speed affecting all industries and professions; our building profession is no exception. To identify the extent of IT application in the building construction context of South Africa, a survey was conducted in the year 2000; it included IT as one of the many topics investigated. The Western Cape Province (WCP) was selected as the first subject of the ambitious national survey. The survey provides insight into the particular patterns in IT applications within the local architectural industry of the WCP and tracks its implications in terms of human resources and technical needs. This research paper presents a focused perspective of the findings of the survey on the local practices; their general profile, their computer technology profiles, their particular applications of technology and finally the effect of computer use on the profitability and cost reduction of their practices. The data presented in this paper highlights the high numbers of small-sized offices as a general characteristic of the local profile. Although a good percentage of these small offices seem to have a high need and use for IT applications, larger-sized offices are totally computerised and are all networked as well. The use of computers is clearly concentrated in three areas: administration, communication in addition to the core activity of construction drawings production. The survey reveals a major dependency on computer-aided-design (CAD) software where its use extends, in most cases, to clients' presentations. This dependency makes high demands on staff and principals' literacy and on the high competency levels needed for their use of technology. On the financial effect of IT use, many practices are not fully convinced that there is an actual reduction in their running costs. The exception occurs in the case of practices run by principals who use computers themselves; they have a positive perception of the financial benefits of technology. This research establishes a baseline from which to scale the progress in the use and application of IT in the architectural profession, being a key player in the construction industry. It serves as a measure for future surveys of the other provinces. It is hoped that it provides a foundation for many assumptions made by practitioners, technologists, consultants and educators of this field.

Keywords: Architecture - South Africa, Architectural Practices, Building Construction, Computer-Aided-Design (CAD), Survey - Cape Town

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Full text: http://www.itcon.org/2001/2 (available to registered users only)

Series: itcon:2001 (browse)
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Arnaud Doniec, Stéphane Espié, René Mandiau, Sylvain Piechowiak

Traffic Simulation At Junction : Non-Normative Practices Vs. Deadlock

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Series: w78:2006 (browse)
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Augenbroe G L M, Lockley S R

Project management issues in remote cad outsourcing

Abstract: The paper addresses the management of CAD outsourcing over Internet. Recent advances in group ware and work flow management tools have made Internet based outsourcing of CAD and GIS production an interesting and potentially viable business prospect. The proliferation of web technology has created the opportunity to distribute work to remote locations (e.g. in developing countries) and thus add to the gamut of electronic commerce opportunities. In fact, recent surveys have shown that many Architecture/Engineering (A/E) firms are already engaging in outsourcing experiments. Many of these experiments have ended in failure, mostly because of lack of proper distant management capabilities and agreed enforceable Quality Assurance (QA) procedures. As a response to 'risky' open partnership outsourcing, companies have started to establish remote affiliated offices to bilaterally manage the outsourcing of projects. This closed partnership approach is deemed less risky as it allows local implementation of established production processes and company styles of the client. The paper deals with the challenges that both types of outsourcing practices pose to the management of remote collaboration.

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Full text: content.pdf (437,233 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1999 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.communication (0.041493) class.commerce (0.031747) class.collaboration (0.023738)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the Research Press of the National Research Council of Canada. The support of the editors, particularly Dr. Dana Vanier, is gratefully appreciated.


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