Investigating ethnic minorities' perceptions of safety climate in the construction industry

Ping Chuen Chan, Francis K.W. Wong, Carol K.H. Hon, Sainan Lyu, Arshad Ali Javed

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Unfortunately, statistics show that EMs have higher fatal and non-fatal occupational injury rates than their local counterparts. However, EMs are often underrepresented in safety climate (SC) research as they are difficult to reach and gauge their perception. A positive relationship has been widely found between SC and safety performance. Understanding the safety perceptions of EMs helps to reduce injuries and improve their safety performance. Method Based on a sample of 320 EMs from 20 companies in the construction industry, exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) were used to identify the SC factors of EMs, and validate the extracted factors, respectively. Multivariate analysis of variance was undertaken to examine mean differences in perceptions of SC by personal characteristics. Results Three SC factors for EMs encapsulating 16 variables were identified through EFA. The hypothesized CFA model for a three-factor structure derived from EFA showed a satisfactory goodness-of-fit, composite reliability, and construct validity. Conclusions Three SC factors were identified, namely: (a) safety management commitment, safety resources, and safety communication; (b) employee's involvement and workmate's influence; and (c) perception of safety rules, procedures and risks. The perceptions of SC differed significantly by nationality, marital status, the number of family members supported, and drinking habit. Practical applications This study reveals the perception of EMs toward SC. The findings highlight the areas for safety improvement and provide leading indicators for safety performance of EMs. The findings are also enlightening for countries with a number of EMs, such as the United Sates, the United Kingdom, Australia, Singapore, and the Middle East.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-19
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Safety Research
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA)
  • Construction management
  • Ethnic minority
  • Exploratory factor analysis (EFA)
  • Safety climate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality


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