Research methodologies for studying the informal aspects of construction project organisations

Delft University of Technology
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
MISBE2011 Proceedings of the international Conference on Management and Innovation for a Sustainable Built Environment, 2011, pp. 1 - 15
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It has been argued that the informal aspects of construction projects play a significant role in the way the project coalesces and subsequently operates. These informalities (e.g. practices, systems, clans) may be real and visible, or simply perceived and thus invisible; commonly encountered in projects or specific to a particular project's context; ethical/legal or unethical/illegal. These dimensions suggest a framework within which to describe the emergence of a project's organizational behaviour. Non-functionalists and subjectivists argue that the informal issues can be best understood by using an emancipatory framework of investigation. This paper presents an approach to the design of research methods appropriate to such tasks. In doing so it accommodates various philosophical points of departure, and the blending of various methods, to construct rigorous analysis to deliver context specific outcomes.
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