Social construction : understanding construction in a human context

Slivon, CA, Howell, GA, Koskela, LJ and Rooke, JA 2010, Social construction : understanding construction in a human context , in: 18th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction, 14-16 July 2010, Haifa, Israel.

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As lean construction has evolved as a practice, efforts have been made to develop theoretical foundations for understanding it. These efforts have been informed by our understanding of lean manufacturing, a source of many of the seminal ideas for lean construction. One key insight has been the shift from the understanding of a process as the transformation of materials from inputs to outputs to the view of a process as a flow of materials through a sequence of steps or operations. Another has been the recognition that value must be considered from the customer perspective. More recently, several authors have proposed more general contexts for understanding the entire construction process. These proposals have included observing the essential role of language in the conduct of projects, recognizing the limitations of a purely economic context, and adopting a more comprehensive flow perspective. In this paper, we propose a framework for situating the construction process in the world of human concerns. We show that consideration of the human being as actor within a world of concerns provides a necessary context and foundational explanation for all subsequent discussions of process, flow, value, and commitment. We also suggest a new perspective for understanding and addressing the issue of risk.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Themes: Subjects / Themes > T Technology > TH Building construction
Subjects / Themes > T Technology > TS Manufactures > TS155-194 Production management. Operations management
Built and Human Environment
Subjects outside of the University Themes
Schools: Schools > School of the Built Environment > Centre for Urban Processes, Resilient Infrastructures & Sustainable Environments
Journal or Publication Title: Proceedings of the 18th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction
Publisher: The International Group for Lean Construction
Refereed: Yes
Related URLs:
Depositing User: LJ Koskela
Date Deposited: 12 Aug 2010 12:52
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2022 17:47
References: Austin, J. (1976) How to Do Things with Words, Second Edition, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Ballard, G. (1999) "Improving Work Flow Reliability," IGLC 08, Berkeley, CA Bertelsen, S., Koskela, L., Henrich, G., and Rooke, J. (2006) "Critical Flow – Towards a Construction Flow Theory," IGLC 14, Santiago, Chile. Bertelsen, S., Henrich, G., Koskela, L., and Rooke, J. (2007) "Construction Physics," IGLC 15, East Lansing, MI. Flores, F. (1982). Management and Communication in the Office of the Future. Ph.D. Diss., Philosophy, Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA, 87 pp. Henrich, G., Bertelsen, S., Koskela, L., Kraemer, K., Rooke, J., and Owen, R. (2008) "Construction Physics – Understanding the Flows in a Construction Process," IGLC 16, Manchester, UK. Johnson, H. and Kaplan, R. (1987) Relevance Lost – The Rise and Fall of Management Accounting, Harvard Business School Press, Boston, 269 pp. Koskela, L. (2000) An Exploration Towards a Production Theory and Its Application to Construction, Espoo 2000. Technical Research Centre of Finland, VTT Publications 408. 296 pp. Macomber, H. and Howell, G. (2003) "Linguistic Action: Contributing to the Theory of Lean Construction," IGLC 11, Blacksburg, VA. Rooke, J., Koskela, L., Bertelsen, S. and Henrich, G. (2007) "Centred Flows: A Lean Approach to Decision Making and Organisation" IGLC 15, East Lansing, MI. Searle, J. (1969) Speech Acts, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. Shingo, S. (1985) A revolution in manufacturing: the SMED system, A. P. Dillon (tr.), Productivity Press, Portland, OR. OTHER TEXTS WHICH INFLUENCED THIS PAPER Heidegger, M. (1977) "The Question Concerning Technology" in Basic Writings, Harper & Row, New York, pp. 283-317. Howell, G. and Macomber, H. (2006) "What Should Project Management Be Based On?," IGLC 14, Santiago, Chile. Howell, G., Macomber, H., Koskela, L., and Draper, J. (2004) "Leadership and Project Management: Time for a Shift from Fayol to Flores," IGLC 12, Copenhagen, Denmark. Koskela, L. and Ballard, G. (2006) "Should Project Management Be Based on Theories of Economics or Production?," Building and Research Information 34(2), pp. 154-163. Maturana, H. and Varela, F. (1987). The Tree of Knowledge, New Science Library, Shambala, Boston & London, 263 pp.

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