Introducing new technical solutions in the swedish construction industry: Interviews with key actors
Paper i proceeding, 2019
Too often, introduction of new technical solutions in the Swedish construction industry results in functional failure, possibly leading to large-scale damages. In this context, issues concerning building physics and moisture are highly relevant. This paper, focus on how new technical solutions are currently introduced and verified as to the functional requirements regarding building physics, identifying gaps and potential for improvement. Data was mainly collected by interviews with key actors in the Swedish construction industry. In this paper, serial failure is defined as multiple cases of failure where a specific technical solution fails to sustain the functional requirements due to reasons in the design or production that could have been predicted by calculations or other assessment in the design phase. Introduction of new technical solutions have two main paths: introduction at a company level, often with routines for evaluation, or introduction at a construction project level, with a varied degree of evaluation. The latter path is found to be the predominant. It is mainly the suppliers who initiates the use of new technical solutions, as well as providing related documentation, samples and references. The consequences of failure might be considered smaller when introducing new technical solutions at project level. However, projects tend to be used as reference cases even without evaluation, thus the introduction in a single project creates a risk to initiate a serial failure. The findings of the interviews pinpoint the important role of the supplier and the documentation the supplier provides. A possible way to address the risk of serial failure when introducing new technical solutions could be to develop a methodology to define and strengthen the steps in the evaluation process, to define the use of reference cases and to clarify the requirements on documentation, samples and references cases to be fulfilled by the supplier.
New technical solution