New roles and functions to enhance digitalisation of the building process: Rethinking interaction between technical possibilities and social realities in current and future project organisations
This project aims to further the understanding of often overlooked social aspects constituting important prerequisites for implementing and operationalizing digitalization in the project organization, and specifically, in the context of the construction site. The Swedish construction sector is striving towards a continuous digitalization of the construction process, where the digital transformations is expected to result in more sustainable work processes and methods, improved digital information flows and promote new business models. Many construction companies are currently investing in digital technology and in the development of digital infrastructure. However, it has been shown that technological achievements cannot easily be introduced in, or be expected to alter, well-established organizational structures and roles. This project takes as its starting point the project organization and how practitioners in different roles perceive the increasing digitization on site. Here, site manager take on an often problematic key role; how do they perceive and understand the impact and transformation of their role due to digitalization, and what needs for support can be identified among other roles in the project organization when the construction site is facing or actively involved in on-going digitization? Consequences of increased building-site digitization are mapped and discussed in interviews, focus groups and during feedback-seminars. The results are primarily directed towards construction companies who, based on the changes that digitization entails, aims to better enable for the supporting of key roles for successful implementation. The project, with its results, is expected to contribute to construction management research on digitization with an increased knowledge of social aspects of technology-driven change and change management in the construction sector, acknowledging particularly the interaction between technical possibilities and social realities.
Christine Räisänen (contact)
Full Professor at Chalmers, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Construction Management
Luleå University of Technology
Funding Chalmers participation during 2019–2022