Determinants of Safety Climate for Building Projects: SEM-Based Cross-Validation Study

American Society of Civil Engineers
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, 2017, 143, (6), pp. 1-12
Issue Date:
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This study develops a safety climate (SC) measurement scale for building projects in Pakistan. In addition, it attempts to validate an existing SC scale in the cross-cultural environment of a developing country and highlights the implications of its cross-validation. The SC data collected from 40 under-construction multistorey building projects were split into calibration and validation samples for conducting the exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis, respectively. This resulted in a 24-item SC scale comprised of four factors: management commitment and employees' involvement in health and safety (MC&EI); safety enforcement and promotion (SE&P); applicability of safety rules and safe work practices (SR&WP); and safety consciousness and responsibility (SC&R). The factor structure obtained through structural equation modeling (SEM) achieved a desirable goodness-of-fit, composite reliability, and construct validity. The SE&P was discovered as one of the most influential SC factors, whereas SR&WP was detected as the most overlooked factor. A correlation was observed among the error variables of SE&P and SR&WP factors, thus necessitating the development of synergy in the safety enhancement efforts of these two factors. The study has reinforced the body of knowledge by highlighting the consequences of cross-validation in a developing country, and unveiling the deviations in the existing SC factor structure such as the discovery of SE&P as a novel SC factor. The study concludes that existing SC scales cannot be generalized across countries and regions without cultural adjustments. The designed SC scale and the study's findings would help the key stakeholders to measure the SC and streamline their safety enhancement strategies on building projects in Pakistan.
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