Enabling information sharing between E-commerce systems for construction material procurement

Stephen C.W. Kong, Heng Li, Tim P.L. Hung, John W.Z. Shi, Daniel Castro-Lacouture, Mirosław Skibniewski

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)


Many E-commerce systems for construction material procurement were developed to improve business process, to cut administration cost, and to provide more comprehensive information. Currently these E-commerce systems are owned and operated by many different parties like manufacturers, suppliers, agents and application services providers. These E-commerce systems are non-interoperable which create problems and difficulties for the buyers who use these systems to purchase construction materials. This paper first introduces the application of E-commerce in construction material procurement and then discusses problems of non-interoperable E-commerce systems and benefits of information sharing between them. Two state-of-the-art information technologies, mobile agent and Web services, for enabling information sharing between E-commerce systems are introduced. The system architecture and functions of a prototype system (named E-Union), which utilizes Web services technology to provide information sharing between construction material E-commerce systems, are presented. System evaluation and future works are discussed in the last part.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-276
Number of pages16
JournalAutomation in Construction
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2004


  • Construction material
  • E-commerce
  • Information sharing
  • Mobile agent
  • Web services

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction


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