Construction innovation and process improvement Edited by Akintola Akintoye, Jack Goulding and Girma Zawdie, Wiley-Blackwell, London, 2012. ISBN 978-1-4051-5648-6, £72.50 (hb)
Publisher’s description: Innovation in construction is essential for growth. The industry strives to remain competitive using a variety of approaches and needs to engage structured initiatives linked to proven innovation concepts, techniques and applications. Even in mature markets like the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) sector, where business behaviour is generally considered as being risk averse, it is increasingly important to embed innovation into mainstream business practices. In Construction Innovation and Process Improvement a number of wide ranging issues from construction practice in different countries with different contexts are presented to provide a rich collection of literature embracing theory and practice. Chapters are divided into three broad themes of construction innovation relating to: Theory and Practice; Process Drivers; and Future Technologies. Several questions are posed, including for example: What is particularly unique about construction innovation in theory and practice? What are the major drivers of construction innovation? What factors are needed to support and deliver future construction technologies? In attempting to respond to such questions, the book sheds new light on these challenges, and provides readers with a number of ways forward, especially cognisant of the increased role of globalisation, the enhanced impact of knowledge, and importance of innovation. All these can have a significant impact on strategic decision-making, competitive advantage, and sustainable policies and practices. Part One deals with change management, technology, sustainable construction, and supply chain management; Part Two addresses innovation and process improvement drivers, including strategic management, concurrent engineering, risk management, innovative procurement, knowledge management; Part Three explores future technologies in construction – and particularly, how these can be harnessed and leveraged to help procure innovation and process improvement.