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Paper w78-2010-105:
Building Support for Cloud Computing in the Irish Construction Industry

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Alan Redmond, Alan Hore, Roger West, Mustafa Alshawi

Building Support for Cloud Computing in the Irish Construction Industry

Abstract: The construction industry has been traditionally recognised as a fragmented sector associated with a poor level of implementation and penetration of Information Communication Technology (ICT) by Small to Medium Size Enterprises (SMEs). The ability to collaborate in parallel with a change management process system that requires a central repository that can act as a base for interoperability between various construction disciplines and their software applications has long been sought. The proposed collaborative solution is not an invention, but more of a practical innovation combining several earlier inventions into something new and compelling. Cloud computing is a collective term for a large number of developments and possibilities. It is a new layer of internet architecture that creates an open opportunity to add functionality to an increasingly global network. The characteristics of Cloud computing such as shared infrastructure, on-demand applications, elasticity and consumption-based pricing, allows all disciplines in the sector to benefit. As part of the Irish Construction IT Alliance (CITA) Enterprise Innovation Network (EIN) research on investigating eBusiness technologies for the Irish construction industry, this paper will present the findings of its research methodology in developing a Web based collaborative platform for the SME market. It is envisioned that this opportunity gap will enable SMEs to support data exchange, information sharing and supply chain collaboration across a secure and affordable network that will allow them to compete in a global environment.

Keywords: Construction, Cloud Computing, Small to Medium sized Enterprises (SME)

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