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Understanding the socio-economic inhibitors to the take up of digital innovation in construction

Transforming construction is a social, cultural, economic and political challenge, and not just a technical problem, and our project will focus on the key social and cultural factors inhibiting digital uptake in the construction sector and which are holding back transformation across the construction supply chain. The research will seek to understand and then improve the socio-cultural bottlenecks preventing the uptake of technical innovations in construction.

This research will focus on the socio-cultural challenges that inhibit the transformation of construction, and will seek to assess the impact of digital innovations where they exist and to understand the barriers to greater uptake. It will work with partners to assess what new contracting and business models are needed to facilitate the innovations that have the potential to transform construction.

With two work streams, one looking at the social context of the UK construction industry and the other at off-site manufacture, this project will build on existing work produced by the Housing Digital Built Britain Network, and will seek to address some of the gaps in capabilities, many of which are social and not just technical. The project will gather evidence from successful use cases, seeking to measure the benefits and value of such innovation in order to provide an evidence based case to the sector to support greater uptake of digital innovation. Through interviews, focus groups and workshops, the research will focus on learning across sectors, on international comparisons and on understanding the different contexts in which innovation is needed, and on the interests, motivations and requirements of the different stakeholders.

This work is supported by the CDBB with funding provided through the Government’s modern industrial strategy by Innovate UK, part of UK Research & Innovation.

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Project Start Date

August 2019