Multi-organizational project teams and construction innovation : the role of general contractor and construction manager
Author(s)Seaman, R. Anthony (Richard Anthony), 1970-
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering.
E. Sarah Slaughter.
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With the advent of major advances in current information technology, many business leaders and academicians hail the arrival of a new decentralized economy based on globally networked teams. This dispersed "market-oriented" structure is a new reality for many current industrial organizations who must transform from fully-integrated, centralized organizations into loose networks of suppliers and sellers utilizing just-in-time collaboration to develop and manufacture new products and services world-wide. Recent trends in manufacturing, where companies are now pursuing ventures outside their own organizations, highlight the need for empirical studies on the nature of the collaborative innovative processes within multi-organizational project teams. In construction, temporary organizations of allied firms join together for the express purpose of completing large, complex projects. An analysis of the construction industry provides a unique opportunity to analyze the innovative nature of the multi organizational project team. A combination of organization, economic, and innovation theory is used to identify factors that enhance multi-organizational project team innovation. Various factors, including principal-agent relationships, cooperation mechanisms, learning mechanisms, and network utilization, are examined to determine their influence on multi-organizational project team innovation. Seven contracting companies are investigated in the performance of twenty-nine different construction projects. Project information is obtained from actual project team members. Fifty innovations are identified from the project sample and used for analysis. The innovations are measured by project in terms of their number and impact on the operations of the general contractor or construction manager. The analysis examines the correlation between various factors and the innovation activity found on each construction project. This research is a step towards understanding the nature of the multi-organizational project team and its capacity to innovate. Project leaders can use this information to better organize project teams for innovation while construction companies and other construction industry firms can use this information to evaluate their innovation strategy.
Thesis (S.M.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 2000.Includes bibliographical references (p. 87-89).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering.; Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Civil and Environmental Engineering.