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Innovation in the Built Environment

Series advisors

Clare Eriksson, Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
Carolyn Hayles, University of Bath
Richard Kirkham, University of Manchester
Andrew Knight, Nottingham Trent University
Stephen Pryke, University College London
Steve Rowlinson, University of Hong Kong
Derek Thomson, Loughborough University
Sara Wilkinson, University of Technology, Sydney

Innovation in the Built Environment (IBE) is a book series for the construction industry published jointly by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and Wiley-Blackwell. Books in the series address issues of current research and practitioner relevance and take an international perspective, drawing from research applications and case studies worldwide.

Innovation in the Built Environment:

Books in the IBE series

Akintoye & Beck: Policy, Finance & Management for Public-Private Partnerships
Booth, et al.: Solutions for Climate Change Challenges in the Built Environment
Boussabaine: Risk Pricing Strategies for Public-Private Partnerships
Kirkham: Whole Life-Cycle Costing
London, et al.: Construction Internationalisation
Lu & Sexton: Innovation in Small Professional Practices in the Built Environment
Pryke: Construction Supply Chain Management: Concepts and Case Studies
Orstavik, et al.: Construction Innovation
Roper & Borello: International Facility Management
Senaratne & Sexton: Managing Change in Construction Projects: a Knowledge-Based Approach
Wilkinson, et al.: Sustainable Building Adaptation

We welcome proposals for new, high quality, research-based books which are academically rigorous and informed by the latest thinking; please contact:

Madeleine Metcalfe
Senior Commissioning Editor

Construction Innovation


Edited by

Finn Orstavik

University College Buskerud and Vestfold

Andrew Dainty

Loughborough University

Carl Abbott

University of Salford

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About the Authors

Carl Abbott
Carl Abbott is Professor of Construction Innovation & Enterprise in the School of the Built Environment at the University of Salford and Director of the Salford Centre for Research & Innovation (SCRI) in the built and human environment. Carl’s research interests include innovation in university-city regions and the sustainable delivery of housing. Significant research projects in which Carl has been involved include the EU funded ‘INNOPOLIS’, the Economic and Social Research Council Distributed Innovation Project ‘The impact of environmental regulation on innovation in the housing sector’, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council/Électricité de France funded ‘People Energy & Buildings’ project on the uptake of micro-generation technologies in housing.

Catherine Barlow
Catherine Barlow is a Research Fellow at the University of Salford and was previously a researcher for a regional housing association. Catherine’s research has primarily focussed on innovation and regulation in the context of UK housing. Catherine’s PhD was on the impact of the Code for Sustainable Homes on UK housing. Since gaining her PhD, Catherine has developed her research interests working as a Research Fellow on projects concerned with low energy housing including the Greater Manchester Local Interaction Programme, Milesecure 2050 and the Innovative Retrofit of Housing.

Frédéric Bougrain
Frédéric Bougrain works as a researcher for the Economics and Human Sciences Department at the Scientific and Technical Centre for Building, University Paris Est in France. His research is concentrated on innovations in the building and construction industry, public–private partnerships, asset management in the social housing sector and energy-saving performance contracts. He previously lectured at the University of Orléans (France) where he defended his PhD thesis on innovation, small- and medium-size enterprises and the consequences for regional technology policy.

Mario Bourgault
Mario Bourgault has conducted more than a decade of research in the field of innovation and project management. He has held the Canada Research Chair in Technology Project Management since 2004. He is also head of Polytechnique Montreal’s graduate program in project management. His work has been published in a number of journals, including Project Management Journal, International Journal of Project Management, R&D Management and International Journal of Managing Projects in Business. In addition to his academic credentials, he spent several years in the field working as a professional engineer, and he maintains close ties with the industry as a researcher and expert consultant.

Lena E. Bygballe
Lena E. Bygballe is Associate Professor at the Department of Strategy and Logistics at BI Norwegian Business School, Oslo, Norway. She is also chair of the Centre for the construction industry in the same department. Her research interests are in the area of interorganisational relationships with particular focus on organisation, learning and innovation.

Andrew Dainty
Andrew Dainty is Professor of Construction Sociology at Loughborough University’s School of Civil and Building Engineering. For the past 20 years, his research has focused on social action within construction and other project-based sectors, particularly the social rules and processes that affect people working as members of project teams. He has a particular interest in practice-based perspectives on innovation in construction and in the relationship between innovation strategy and the performance of project-based firms. Andrew is co-editor of the leading research journal Construction Management and Economics, a past chair of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management (ARCOM) and former joint coordinator of CIB Task Group 76 on Recognising Innovation in Construction.

Nathalie Drouin
Nathalie Drouin, PhD (University of Cambridge), MBA (HEC-Montréal), is the Associate Dean of Research and former Director of Graduate programs in Project Management, School of Management at Université du Québec à Montreal (ESG UQAM) and a professor, Department of Management and Technology, ESG UQAM. She teaches initiation and strategic management of projects in the Graduate Project Management Programs. Her research has been funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Canadian Institute of Health Research, the Quebec Research Council, and the Project Management Institute. She is a Member of the Scientific Committee of the Project Management Research Chair, ESG UQAM.

Marianne Forman
Marianne Forman is Senior Researcher at the Danish Building Research Institute, Aalborg University, Denmark. Her research area encompasses innovation, user-driven innovation, sustainable transition, environmental management in companies and product chains, project management and change processes, working environment and cooperation inside companies and among companies.

She graduated from the Danish Technical University (1991), where she also defended her PhD thesis on Processes of Change and Participation Forms in Preventive Environmental Work (1998).

Martha E. Gross
Currently based in Arup’s New York office, Martha Gross is a Senior Infrastructure Consultant with a focus on delivering transportation megaprojects. From her past and present roles as contractor, owner’s engineer, and lender’s advisor on highway and bridge projects up to $3 billion in construction cost, she has gained extensive first-hand experience with design-build and public-private partnership contracting. Among other recognitions she holds an MBA and PhD in civil engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, where her research focussed on infrastructure finance and delivery via PPP contracts.

Håkan Håkansson
Håkan Håkansson is Professor in International Management at the Department of Innovation and Economic Organisation at BI Norwegian Business School, Oslo, Norway. His research interests are in the area of interorganisational business relationships and business networks with particular focus on innovation and economic development.

Kim Haugbølle
Kim Haugbølle has been working closely with construction clients for almost twenty years, and he was instrumental in the establishment of the Danish Construction Clients Association in 1999. He is coordinating the CIB Working Commission on Clients and Users in Construction with Professor David Boyd. Kim has published extensively on innovation and technology assessment in the construction industry with special emphasis on procurement, sustainable design and life cycle economics. The academic insights have been turned into the development of a life cycle costing tool for the Danish version of the German Sustainable Building Council sustainability certification scheme.

J. L. (John) Heintz
Dr. John L. Heintz is Head of Section and Associate Professor in the Design and Construction Management Section of the Faculty of Architecture at the Delft University of Technology. Before pursuing his PhD in architecture at the Technical University of Delft, he earned his professional degree in architecture from the University of Calgary, graduating with the AIA Gold Medal. His research interests include the strategic management of architectural firms, new forms of architectural practise, design collaboration, design quality and knowledge sharing in design projects. He is co-author of De Architect in de Praktijk (in Dutch).

Malena Ingemansson
Malena Ingemansson is post doc at the Centre for Science and Technology Studies at Uppsala University. Her research interests are in the area of technology development and innovation involving settings such as industrial production and academia.

Kristian Kreiner
Kristian Kreiner is professor at Copenhagen Business School, Department of Organization. He was the founder and director of the Centre for Management Studies of the Building Process ( In his research, he aims to understand how things are organized under conditions of complexity, uncertainty and ambiguity. These interests have occasioned detailed empirical studies in many sectors and industries, not the least in construction. Current studies include research on the ways in which we manage to make difficult or impossible choices, for example in connection with architectural competitions.

Heli Koukkari
Heli Koukkari is Principal Scientist at the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, which she joined in 1982. Her R&D topics have covered overall performance and sustainability of buildings; concrete, steel, composite and timber structures and most recently innovation processes. She has been vice-chair of the COST Action C25, Sustainability of Constructions – Integrated Approach to Life-Time Structural Engineering, and member of the RTD Committee of the European Network of Building Research Institutes ENBRI; of the TC14 Sustainable and Eco-Efficient Steel Construction of the European Convention for Constructional Steelwork ECCS; and of Work Group3, Construction & Infrastructure of the European Steel Technology Platform ESTEP.

Graeme D. Larsen
Graeme D. Larsen is Lecturer in Construction Management and the School Director of Post Graduate Research Studies, University of Reading. His research interests are wide reaching, from innovation diffusion to competitiveness networks of small- to medium-size enterprises. He is actively engaged with the Chartered Institute of Building, being an academic and industry membership assessor. His more recent research focused on corporate social responsibility, use of communication networks, innovative procurement methods in niche markets, sustainability and resilience planning.

Gonzalo Lizarralde
A specialist in planning, management and evaluation of international architecture projects, Gonzalo Lizarralde is a professor at the School of Architecture at the Université de Montréal. He has fifteen years of experience in consulting for architecture and construction projects and has published numerous articles in the fields of low-cost housing and project management. Dr. Lizarralde has been awarded research grants and scholarships from the National Research Foundation of South Africa, the Canadian and Quebec governments and other funding agencies. Dr. Lizarralde is director of the IF Research Group, which studies the processes related to the planning and development of construction projects.

Martin Loosemore
Martin Loosemore is Professor of Construction Management at UNSW, Sydney, Australia. He is a Visiting Professor at The University of Loughborough, UK, and a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and of the Chartered Institute of Building. Martin was an advisor on international workplace productivity and reform to the Australian Federal Government’s 2003 Royal Commission into the Building and Construction Industry. He served for six years on the Australian Federal Government’s Built Environment Industry Innovation Council advising on Australian Government innovation policy.

Karen Manley
Karen Manley is a researcher in the area of innovation in infrastructure projects. She is currently Associate Professor, Science and Engineering Faculty, Queensland University of Technology and Higher Degree Research Director, School of Civil Engineering and Built Environment. She has many years of experience as an academic and private consultant, specialising in the application of post-neoclassical approaches to the analysis of innovation and industry growth. She investigates knowledge flows, networking and innovation systems to shed light on the performance of a number of industries, including the construction industry. Her current research focus is on innovative approaches to collaborative procurement and sustainable building. She has published extensively in international journals, and her work has informed the development of government policy across Australia in the area of innovation capacity.

R. Edward Minchin Jr.
In a twenty-nine-year career in industry and academia, Dr. Minchin has worked as a contractor’s unskilled labourer; contractor’s cost estimator; highway, bridge and drainage designer; owner’s inspector; owner’s field engineer; transportation agency executive; lecturer; researcher; and arbiter. Since obtaining his PhD (Pennsylvania State University, 1999), his research has resulted in over 95 publications with recent emphasis on project delivery systems, especially CMGC and DB. He currently holds the Rinker Professorship and serves as Director of Master’s Programs at the M.E. Rinker Sr. School of Construction Management at the University of Florida. In his role as arbiter, he currently sits on six Disputes Review Boards.

Finn Orstavik
Finn Orstavik has his doctoral degree in sociology from the University of Oslo (1996). He is specializes in innovation studies and has early in his career done historical studies of military research and development and private sector innovation in digital computers in Norway. His later research covers empirical and historical studies of industry development, the institutional system of innovation and innovation policy. His theoretical interests span Giddens’ structuration theory, general systems theory, Luhmann’s theory of social systems, innovation theory and American pragmatist philosophers (e.g. Dewey, Mead, Follett). He has studied innovation and knowledge processes in the construction industry over a period of 10 years and has published studies amongst others on industrial clusters, innovation systems and innovation in Norwegian house building. Orstavik has been Research Director of the Centre for Regional Innovation and teaches master level courses on Innovation and Leadership and Innovation and Globalisation at the University College in Buskerud and Vestfold in Norway.

Timothy M. Rose
Timothy M. Rose is a Lecturer in the Science and Engineering Faculty at Queensland University of Technology and a Course Leader of the Master of Project Management and Master of Infrastructure Management courses at this university. Prior to this appointment, Tim worked as a senior project manager on major construction projects in Australia. His multidisciplinary research has contributed to both construction project management and broader business management in project based-industries as the presence of his research in journals across these fields has demonstrated. He has published more than twenty peer reviewed articles and book chapters in the areas of procurement, sustainability and innovation, and has a strong research interest in applied economic and psychological-based models that predict motivation, commitment and performance across complex construction supply chains.

Martin Sexton
Martin Sexton has been Principal Investigator and Co-investigator on numerous Engineering and Physical Science Research Council, Economic and Social Research Council and European Commission awards totalling in excess of £7 million. He is recognised internationally for his research in the area of innovation management, particularly in the contexts of small construction firms and knowledge-intensive professional service firms. Martin is currently focusing on transition management for sustainability, environmental innovation, energy systems and the impact of regulation on innovation. Martin was formerly the Joint Co-ordinator of the CIB Working Commission 65 – Organisation and Management of Construction.

Laurent Viel
Laurent Viel is a PhD candidate at Université de Montréal. He has been affiliated with the IF Research Group since 2012. His research examines the ethical considerations of collaboration and participation processes in urban projects. Since 2013, he works with a municipality in France.

J. W. F. (Hans) Wamelink
Hans Wamelink is Professor of Design & Construction Management and Head of the Department Real Estate & Housing at the Faculty of Architecture, Delft University of Technology. His main focus is on cooperation in the supply chain, new ways to contract and process innovation. Previously he worked for ten years as part-time Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Technology Management of Eindhoven University of Technology. He has also gained substantial experience in practise as the owner and managing director of a management and consultancy firm.


Members of the CIB community worldwide are proud of the contribution that they collectively make to creating and maintaining a better built environment. They are aware of the challenges that the construction industry faces and the important role that innovation plays in realising powerful solutions. Nevertheless, despite the strong interest, agreeing on a simple definition and an approach to measuring innovation remains elusive. CIB members may feel that the innovation construct is both complex and nebulous, and disagree about questions as fundamental as whether the industry is innovative or not. However, one thing that all agree upon is that we need to know more about the innovation phenomenon. It was for this reason that I was keen to endorse the idea of creating a CIB Task Group titled ‘Recognising Innovation’ in Dubrovnik in 2009.

During its lifetime the group and its members were a vibrant presence at CIB events. Amongst other activities, they hosted debates, conducted scenario workshops and ran special paper tracks. Not least importantly they announced the idea of publishing this book. Here they have coalesced many of the perspectives emerging through the efforts of the group, along with those of other leading scholars in the construction innovation field. The result is a presentation of an eclectic and informative set of perspectives that sheds light on innovation and its importance in realising our aspirations for the built environment.

On behalf of CIB and our membership, I am very pleased to endorse this publication. It is a thought-provoking and valuable contribution to research on innovation in the built environment. I am confident that it provides important insights for anyone wishing to understand, to do research on or to effectively manage innovation in or adjacent to the construction sector.

Dr. Wim Bakens

Secretary General, CIB


The origin of this book lies in the work of an international collaborative task group convened by the International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction (CIB), and the development of ideas have been enriched by a research project on knowledge processes in construction carried out through the years 2007–2012 with financing from the Research Council of Norway and industry partners. The CIB Task Group 76 explored the ways in which innovation was recognised and measured in the construction industry. It brought together diverse perspectives on innovation in the built environment in order to understand the multiple ways in which the term has been mobilised and deployed in construction research and practice. Over three and a half years, the group provided a forum for critical debates, workshops, and special paper tracks, through which a range of divergent meanings and implications of innovation were revealed. This book coalesces some of these perspectives with those of other scholars within the construction innovation field. It has been written to stimulate new debates in construction innovation within the research and practice communities and to inspire reflection on the ways in which innovation can be considered and ultimately capitalised on for the benefit of organisations and society at large.

As the editors of the volume, we wish to thank all the excellent scholars who have contributed to the book in such a positive and insightful way. We also wish to thank our friends in Wiley Blackwell who have encouraged and supported this project all the way from inception to completion. We hope that this book provides some thought-provoking insights that will inspire future research and scholarship into the ways in which we study, recognise, and encourage innovation within the construction sector.

Finn Orstavik, Andy Dainty and Carl Abbott

May 2014