Use of advanced and green construction materials by small and medium-sized enterprises

Wright, Christopher and Thorpe, David (2015) Use of advanced and green construction materials by small and medium-sized enterprises. In: 31st Annual Conference of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management (ARCOM 2015) , 7-9 Nov 2015, Lincoln, United Kingdom.


The use of advanced and green materials by the construction industry can significantly improve sustainability by reducing demand on scarce resources, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving safety, facilitating resilience of structures and encouraging the use of modern construction practices. Examples of such material include laminated veneer lumber, glulam, rammed earth, high strength concrete, lightweight concrete and adobe brick. To evaluate the use of such materials, an exploratory survey was conducted on-line in Australia and New Zealand into their use by small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that were undertaking either design or construction. The purpose of this survey was to better understand the use of such materials by the selected firms, understand why they were used or not used, and assess their likelihood of use in the future. Thirty firms responded to the survey. Each firm was asked to respond in detail to the use of five advanced and green materials, selected from a total number of sixteen. The extent to which these materials were used varied by individual firms and their role in the industry. It was found that there were seven leading issues (or factors) with respect to the use of such materials. The range of factors tended to depend on whether or not the firm had used the selected material. Experience appeared to be the leading issue restricting the uptake of individual materials. Other factors included cost of material and the availability of standards or codes of practice. While it is recognised that further work is required to validate the results of this research and extend it beyond Australia and New Zealand, this survey has given good insight into the use of these materials by SME firms in the construction industry.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying
Date Deposited: 06 Nov 2017 02:50
Last Modified: 05 Mar 2018 05:42
Uncontrolled Keywords: green buildings, material usage, small and medium enterprises,sustainability, technology transfer
Fields of Research : 09 Engineering > 0905 Civil Engineering > 090502 Construction Engineering
Socio-Economic Objective: B Economic Development > 87 Construction > 8703 Construction Materials Performance and Processes > 870399 Construction Materials Performance and Processes not elsewhere classified

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