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[Vol. 20, No. 2, 2015]


 

Published by
Penerbit Universiti Sains Malaysia

Print ISSN: 1823-6499
Online ISSN: 2180-4222
Frequency: Biannually
Current Issue: Volume 20, No. 2, 2015
Abstracting/Indexing: EBSCO, MyAIS, Google Scholar, DOAJ, Scopus

Journal of Construction in Developing Countries is listed in ERA Ranked Journal List.

USM has extended content delivery format for its journals’ publication in print and PDF to include ePub, to address the growing need for more mobile accessibility.

Call for Paper for Special Issue on "AEC Sector Role to Urbanise India":
Please refer to http://web.usm.my/jcdc/announcement.html
 
:: Home
 

The Journal of Construction in Developing Countries (JCDC) is a scholarly peer-reviewed international publication, invaluable to those who are interested in the issues relevant to the built environment of developing countries. The bi-annual journal is published by Penerbit Universiti Sains Malaysia in cooperation with the working Commission 107 (W107) of the International Council for Research and Innovation in Building Construction (CIB). It is building upon the work of the former Journal of Housing Building and Planning by expanding its scope. From the 11th volume onwards, the Journal of Housing Building and Planning is renamed the Journal of Construction in Developing Countries. It is a multi-disciplinary effort involving scientists, professionals and practitioners and it will specifically provide a unifying basis bringing together architects, landscape designers, engineers, project managers, construction managers, quantity surveyors, town planners, sociologists, property managers, facilities managers and designers, among others.

All contents of the journal are freely available without charge to the user or his/her institution. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles in this journal without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author. This is all in accordance with the BOAI definition of open access.

 

:: Aims and Scope
 

The Journal of Construction in Developing Countries seeks to provide a central vehicle for the exchange and dissemination of knowledge on issues relevant to the built environment of developing countries. The journal provides a wide range of original research an application papers on current developments and advances in the built environment as well as the economic, social, cultural and technological contexts of developing countries. It also publishes detailed case studies, as well as short communications and discussions. Topics covered include, but are not restricted to planning, urban economics, rural and regional development, housing, management and resource issues, sustiainability, knowledge and technology transfer, construction procurement, facilities management, information an communication technologies, strategies and policy issues, design issues, conservation and environmental issues.

 

:: Publication Ethics
 

Journal of Construction in Developing Countries adheres to the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) standards on publications ethics. For further details please visit:

 

:: Current Issue

Volume 20, No. 2, 2015
 

Title: Determining Significant Factors Influencing Malaysian Construction Business Performance in International Markets
Author: Che Maznah Mat Isa, Hamidah Mohd Saman and Christopher Nigel Preece
 
- Abstract  

Market expansion into foreign markets has become increasingly important for construction businesses, including Malaysian contractors. It is therefore imperative that these firms are able to sustain performance in international markets. This paper aims to determine the significant factors influencing the Malaysian contractors' performance in international markets. This study adopts a mixed method using questionnaires that were sent to 115 construction firms as a sampling frame. The quantitative findings were further validated through in-depth interviews with five firms currently operating at the international level. It was found that the firms' profit targets based on return on investment and revenues supported by the firms' competitive advantages due to employees' capabilities and competencies have significantly influenced the firms' performance. However, further insights disclosed that having strong and stable human relationships were very important to enhancing the firms' performance in international markets. The findings build further understanding of international strategies for construction in developing countries. Finally, the study identifies the need to develop a suitable tool to measure firms' performance by taking into consideration the complex elements within the identified significant influencing factors.

Keywords: Construction firms, Factors, International market, Performance, Quantitative, Qualitative

Title: Contractor Capacity and Waste Generation: An Empirical Investigation
Author: Krisanthi Seneviratne, Raufdeen Rameezdeen and Dilanthi Amaratunga
 
- Abstract  

This paper aims to test the hypothesis that an inverse relationship exists between the capacity of a contractor and the amount of waste generated in a construction site. In Sri Lanka, contractors are graded by an independent government agency and this study uses 15 projects undertaken by grade M1 to M5 contractors. M1 contractors constitute the highest grade and they have higher technical, financial and managerial capabilities. These projects are examined to determine cement wastages and link them to these respective grades to clarify their relationship. The major finding is that upper grade contractors, who are more capable, generate less waste compared to their lower grade counterparts. This suggests that contractor capacity not only has desirable outcomes for better time, cost and quality objectives but also benefits the environmental objectives of their clients. While the present grading system in Sri Lanka does not consider waste management, it is suggested that the waste management practices of contractors could vary immensely from the M1 grade to the lower grades. Consequently, future revisions in the grading system should seriously consider incorporating waste management practices to provide an incentive to contractors who appropriately manage their waste. In theory, this will encourage efficient waste reduction practices in construction sites.

Keywords: Construction waste, Contractor capacity, Waste reduction, Sri Lanka

Title: Unveiling the Challenges Faced By Malaysian Housing Developers through Government Policy Changes
Author: Azlan Raofuddin Nuruddin, Syed Putra Syed Abu Bakar and Mastura Jaafar
 
- Abstract  

Despite being receptive to new ideas, Malaysian housing developers must be responsive to the demands imposed upon the industry. One of the external factors that influence the growth of housing development firms is the intervention of government. The role of government in shaping the housing industry is especially pertinent because most land matters involve dealing directly with local and state authorities. The regulations imposed by the government are perceived as imbalanced and serve only to increase the challenges confronted by housing developers to maintain their survivability. This paper is therefore aimed at disclosing the related challenges faced by housing developers with respect to current government issues. Appropriately, 10 Malaysian housing developers were interviewed to determine the reasons for their success in achieving business sustainability, including eliciting responses for the myriad of challenges faced. To analyse the findings, a qualitative approach was used that is based on the content analysis method. All the interviewees highlighted several challenges that have impeded their progress in the management of the housing development business. Interestingly, the most notable challenge revealed by the respondents is related to the vagaries of the government rules and processes. Among the grievances mentioned by the participants were late approvals, sudden changes of rules, non-uniform compliances and other similar issues. Hence, there is a serious need for housing developers and the government to work in tandem, not only to minimise complaints directed towards the government but also to concertedly embrace changes in terms of policies and laws. A mutually beneficial wave of innovation is thus advocated, where the vested interests of both housing developers and house buyers will be protected accordingly. In addition, with good comprehension of the government procedures, the creation of economic empowerment and development will be easily realised.

Keywords: Challenges, Housing developers, Government regulations, Late approval, Qualitative approach

Title: Key Stressors Leading to Construction Professionals' Stress in the Gaza Strip, Palestine
Author: Adnan Enshassi and Eman Al.Swaity
 
- Abstract  

The aim of this paper is to investigate the key stressors that lead to stress among professionals on construction projects. A total of 320 questionnaires were randomly distributed to construction professionals in the Gaza Strip, and 183 were returned, yielding a 51% response rate. Exploratory factor analysis was employed to explore the interrelationships among stressor attributes in four stressor groups (task, personal, physical, and organisational). The results of this study indicated that personality and home-work conflicts are the most prevailing personal stressors linked to stress experienced by Gaza Strip construction professionals. This type of stress was induced because construction professionals did not give attention to their personal lives in addition to their jobs. Task stressors resulted from two types of work overload: quantitative and qualitative. Quantitative overload came from working for long hours with too much work, whereas qualitative overload resulted from a wide range of responsibilities. Physical stressors were not recognised by Gaza Strip construction professionals as an important source of stress. With regard to organisational stressors, it was found that the policies, treatment, and rewards were inadequate. A politicised environment and lack of feedback from the supervisor were responsible for organisational structure stressors. This study will add value to the existing body of knowledge concerning Palestinian professionals' perspectives of stressors in the construction industry. Professionals can take key stressors into consideration to manage and minimise stress on construction projects. Therefore, training sessions on managing and coping with stress is recommended for construction professionals.

Keywords: Stressors, Stress, Construction, Professionals, Factor analysis

Title: Documentation Management Based on ISO for Construction Industries in Developing Countries
Author: Sepani Senaratne and Jeevana Mayuran
 
- Abstract  

Improper document management (DM) can produce poor and erroneous documents and cause major issues, such as claims and disputes, in construction projects. Adopting a proper documentation management system (DMS) will enable the smooth completion of construction projects to overcome such issues. Quality management systems such as the International Standard Organisation (ISO) standards are designed with generic DM requirements. In developed countries, standard project management procedures and manuals are often used to guide such document requirements. However, construction industries in developing countries are still behind in this regard. Hence, this study aimed to explore the current DM requirements in the Sri Lankan construction industry and the reasons for poor DM and provides suggestions for overcoming these problems. A questionnaire was given to a sample of 30 large construction-contracting organisations operating in Sri Lanka, all of which had ISO certification. The findings revealed 40 DM-related construction activities and their needs and uses by the selected companies. Based on the suggestions given by respondents, this study proposes how to implement these activities and develop an appropriate DMS for the construction industry. This research will offer useful implications for developing countries that use similar standards and encounter similar DM issues.

Keywords: Documentation management, ISO, Quality management system, Construction industry, Contractors

Title: Framework for Managing the Traffic Impacts of Building Construction Projects
Author: Khaled Hesham Hyari, Mohammad S. El-Mashaleh and Shaher M. Rababeh
 
- Abstract  

Major building construction projects are important to the economic development of urban areas. However, such projects have negative impacts on their surroundings, particularly on traffic. This paper presents a framework for mitigating the traffic impacts of building construction projects in urban areas. The proposed framework consists of two stages: identification of the logistical construction requirements and development of an impact mitigation plan to control the negative effects of construction traffic on the road network and the surrounding community. The adopted methodology includes (1) a review of the available construction traffic management plans for twenty large building projects worldwide, (2) site visits to seven large building construction projects in urban areas and (3) multidisciplinary focus group sessions to extract knowledge and synthesise the proposed framework for managing the traffic impacts of building construction projects. The suggested framework provides systematic guidance for construction planners and site managers in developing a traffic management and impact mitigation plan for building construction projects. This framework could also help construction planners and site managers to better plan and manage construction activities to minimise the impact on the surrounding roads and minimise unnecessary delays by organising timely movement of resources to and from the construction site.

Keywords: Building construction, Project planning, Construction site, Impact mitigation, Traffic impact

Title: Nature of the Construction Industry, Its Needs and Its Development: A Review of Four Decades of Research
Author: George Ofori
 
- Abstract  

: The construction industry is not well understood. There is no common definition, and there are even arguments about whether it is an industry or a sector that comprises many industries. The contribution of the construction industry to economic growth and long-term national development is widely acknowledged, highlighting its importance, particularly to developing countries. For the benefit of these countries, it is important to investigate the nature, essential characteristics and particular requirements of the construction industry and to use them to develop programmes for its improvement. A research programme that started in 1974 and is still continuing is discussed. The subjects studied in the research programme have included the nature of the construction industry, its importance in development, its needs and its development. Elements of the process of construction industry development that have been studied include ways and means of improving the performance of construction firms, focusing on contractors and technology development. The findings from these early studies influenced the formulation of policies and legislation for establishing construction industry development agencies in a number of countries. Other aspects of the construction industry that are studied in the research programme include the parameters of performance in the industry, such as productivity and environmental performance. An information technology framework for construction was also developed. As the world entered the information age, the implications for the industry were also studied. Finally, the concepts of leadership, ethics and transparency and their importance on construction projects and in the construction industry were also studied. The focus here is on industry development and its application to the effective methods should be found to reduce the tendency to duplicate studies and to effectively build on relevant findings over time. A research agenda is proposed.

Keywords: Industry development, Technology development, Environmental performance, Leadership