Key drivers for smart and sustainable practices in the built environment

Timothy O. Olawumi, Daniel W.M. Chan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The construction industry has been evolving in recent years through the adoption of smart tools such as building information modeling to reduce the complexity in the construction process and optimize the project's goals. This paper aims to identify and assess the key drivers for the implementation of smart sustainable practices in the construction industry. Design/methodology/approach: Inferential and descriptive statistical techniques were employed in analyzing the data collected via an international empirical questionnaire survey deployed in soliciting the perceptions of 220 construction professionals across 21 countries. Factor analysis was used to categorize the identified key drivers into their underlying clusters for further discussion. Also, the data were analyzed based on the various groups and regions of the study's respondents. Findings: The key drivers (KDs) are related to the technical competence of staff as well as knowledge and awareness level within the industry, issues related to organizational and project's strategy and policies, availability of financial resources and development of relevant standards and policies to aid its execution among others. A comparative analysis of the perceptions of the different respondents' groups was undertaken and discussed. Practical implications: The analysis of the key drivers for the implementation of smart and sustainable practices in the construction industry is expected to aid the decision-making of the relevant stakeholders as well as serve as a consultation instrument for government agencies in their design of localized policies and guidelines to aid smart and sustainable urbanization. The findings revealed the gaps in the implementation of smart and sustainable practices in various climes and organization setups and provided useful and practical strategies for addressing the current hindrances during implementation. Originality/value: The study has generated valuable insights into the significant drivers that can enhance the implementation of smart and sustainable practices across regions. It is evident that synergy among the relevant stakeholders in the built environment will help accelerate the implementation of smart sustainable practices in the construction industry. The study findings have provided profound contributions to theory and research as well as to industry practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1257-1281
Number of pages25
JournalEngineering, Construction and Architectural Management
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 21 Apr 2020


  • BIM
  • Construction industry
  • Drivers
  • Smart sustainable practices
  • Stakeholders
  • Sustainability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Building and Construction
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)

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