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Managing Change for Increased Innovation in the Infrastructure Sector Exploring a Client's Strategy Implementation
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering, Industrilized and sustainable construction.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0661-2828
2020 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Strategy implementation for driving innovation and change within the infrastructure sector is important because the path from making a decision to change to actually reaching the intended vision is complex. A client needs to find strategies for how to stimulate innovation when the client has to go via the contractor during the execution of a project. The contractors are therefore important in achieving the intention of increasing the innovation rate in the sector in general. A client interested in enabling innovation must find and utilise strategies within the relationship with their contractors. That a client should stimulate innovation has been established in earlier research; however, how this could be done is less studied.

The client in this study, the Swedish Transport Administration, has decided upon two strategies to increase the innovation rate: a change to procuring design-build (DB) contracts instead of design-bid-build (DBB) contracts, and increasing the number of foreign contractors in the Swedish infrastructure sector. The purpose of this thesis is to explore the implementation of these two strategies — DB contracts and working with foreign contractors — with a focus on the perceived challenges for both client and contractors.

The method used has been a multi-case study with 40 semi-structured interviews with project managers, procurement officers, project directors, site controllers, site managers, and project engineers in eight different cases. The empirical data are all from Swedish infrastructure projects with a duration of 1 to 10 years. Some of the cases have been multicultural and multilingual.

 The findings of this study are that, firstly, the client seems not to have made the transition entirely to the DB contract setting, resulting in a mix between the two contract types. This results in confusion for both the domestic and foreign contractors. The domestic contractors in general have not fully adapted to the new contract type where they are to take more responsibility, and the foreign contractors are more used to the DB contract and therefore feel confused by the client not utilising it as intended. Secondly, the strategy of increasing the number of foreign contractors has been fruitful. There are a number of foreign contractors that have both submitted tenders to the Swedish Transport Administration, and established themselves in Sweden. There are, however, five different categories of perceived challenges that have been identified. These categories are economic, political, procurement-related, social, and project-related challenges for foreign contractors after entering in the Swedish infrastructure sector.

The contributions of this thesis are that the client’s role in strategy implementation should be further explored, and that perceived challenges should warrant attention. This thesis focuses on two strategies on how the path towards innovation could look, from both client and contractor perspective, resulting in a theoretical contribution to the client-driven innovation literature, as well as construction management literature. By being aware of the challenges and that changing the project delivery system is more than changing the name of the contract, a client could ease a contractor’s situation and therefore enable them to focus on innovation and improvements.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Luleå University of Technology, 2020.
Series
Licentiate thesis / Luleå University of Technology, ISSN 1402-1757
National Category
Construction Management
Research subject
Construction Management and Building Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-77565ISBN: 978-91-7790-524-0 (print)ISBN: 978-91-7790-525-7 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ltu-77565DiVA, id: diva2:1389908
Presentation
2020-03-27, F231, Luleå tekniska universitet, Luleå, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Available from: 2020-01-30 Created: 2020-01-30 Last updated: 2020-03-09Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Contextual communicative competence in multinational infrastructure projects
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Contextual communicative competence in multinational infrastructure projects
(English)In: Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
National Category
Construction Management
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-77820 (URN)
Available from: 2020-02-24 Created: 2020-02-24 Last updated: 2020-02-24
2. Exploring entry barriers in the public infrastructure market
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Exploring entry barriers in the public infrastructure market
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Construction Management
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-77822 (URN)
Available from: 2020-02-24 Created: 2020-02-24 Last updated: 2020-03-09
3. The Transition from Design-Bid-Build Contracts to Design-Build
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Transition from Design-Bid-Build Contracts to Design-Build
2019 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Purpose–For a number of years, the construction industry has seen an ongoing shift from design-bid-buildto design-build contracts. This transition in contract type entails changes for both the organizations and theindividuals involved. Consequently, the purpose of this paper is to investigate how the client manages thetransition between the different contract types from an organizational change perspective in a project-ledorganization.

Design/Methodology/Approach–A multiple case study of six infrastructure projects with DBcontracts, all managed by the Swedish Transport Administration, was conducted. The major source of data issemi-structured interviews with respondents from both the client and the contractors.

Findings–Results suggest that the transition has resulted in a mix of design-bid-build and design-build ascontract type owing to issues when changing in a project-led organization. A change in vision also requires aconcomitant change in culture, systems and roles.

Research Limitations/Implications–The study only includes cases from the Swedish transportinfrastructure sector, which limits the generalizability. Thefindings are also indicative owing to the smallnumber of cases.

Practical Implications–Thefindings further our understanding of managing change in complexprojects, which might help practitioners to manage change in a more integrated way.

Originality/Value–Thefindings enrich our understanding of the systemic change that a switch incontract types can have in inter-organizational complex projects such as transport infrastructure projects.Furthermore, it emphasizes the intricate task of change management in project-led organizations and itseffects on roles and responsibilities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2019
Keywords
Strategic change, Design-build, Design-bid-build, Roles, Responsibility, Infrastructure project, Project-led organization
National Category
Construction Management Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
Research subject
Construction Management and Building Technology; Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-74053 (URN)10.1108/S2516-285320190000002054 (DOI)
Conference
10th Nordic Conference on Construction Economics and Organization, 7-8 May 2019, Tallinn, Estonia
Available from: 2019-05-27 Created: 2019-05-27 Last updated: 2020-02-24Bibliographically approved
4. Control systems in inter-organizational multi-cultural infrastructure projects
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Control systems in inter-organizational multi-cultural infrastructure projects
(English)In: Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
National Category
Construction Management
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-77821 (URN)
Available from: 2020-02-24 Created: 2020-02-24 Last updated: 2020-02-24
5. Managing Change for Increased Innovation in the Infrastructure Sector Exploring a Client's Strategy Implementation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Managing Change for Increased Innovation in the Infrastructure Sector Exploring a Client's Strategy Implementation
2020 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Strategy implementation for driving innovation and change within the infrastructure sector is important because the path from making a decision to change to actually reaching the intended vision is complex. A client needs to find strategies for how to stimulate innovation when the client has to go via the contractor during the execution of a project. The contractors are therefore important in achieving the intention of increasing the innovation rate in the sector in general. A client interested in enabling innovation must find and utilise strategies within the relationship with their contractors. That a client should stimulate innovation has been established in earlier research; however, how this could be done is less studied.

The client in this study, the Swedish Transport Administration, has decided upon two strategies to increase the innovation rate: a change to procuring design-build (DB) contracts instead of design-bid-build (DBB) contracts, and increasing the number of foreign contractors in the Swedish infrastructure sector. The purpose of this thesis is to explore the implementation of these two strategies — DB contracts and working with foreign contractors — with a focus on the perceived challenges for both client and contractors.

The method used has been a multi-case study with 40 semi-structured interviews with project managers, procurement officers, project directors, site controllers, site managers, and project engineers in eight different cases. The empirical data are all from Swedish infrastructure projects with a duration of 1 to 10 years. Some of the cases have been multicultural and multilingual.

 The findings of this study are that, firstly, the client seems not to have made the transition entirely to the DB contract setting, resulting in a mix between the two contract types. This results in confusion for both the domestic and foreign contractors. The domestic contractors in general have not fully adapted to the new contract type where they are to take more responsibility, and the foreign contractors are more used to the DB contract and therefore feel confused by the client not utilising it as intended. Secondly, the strategy of increasing the number of foreign contractors has been fruitful. There are a number of foreign contractors that have both submitted tenders to the Swedish Transport Administration, and established themselves in Sweden. There are, however, five different categories of perceived challenges that have been identified. These categories are economic, political, procurement-related, social, and project-related challenges for foreign contractors after entering in the Swedish infrastructure sector.

The contributions of this thesis are that the client’s role in strategy implementation should be further explored, and that perceived challenges should warrant attention. This thesis focuses on two strategies on how the path towards innovation could look, from both client and contractor perspective, resulting in a theoretical contribution to the client-driven innovation literature, as well as construction management literature. By being aware of the challenges and that changing the project delivery system is more than changing the name of the contract, a client could ease a contractor’s situation and therefore enable them to focus on innovation and improvements.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Luleå University of Technology, 2020
Series
Licentiate thesis / Luleå University of Technology, ISSN 1402-1757
National Category
Construction Management
Research subject
Construction Management and Building Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-77565 (URN)978-91-7790-524-0 (ISBN)978-91-7790-525-7 (ISBN)
Presentation
2020-03-27, F231, Luleå tekniska universitet, Luleå, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Available from: 2020-01-30 Created: 2020-01-30 Last updated: 2020-03-09Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Managing Change for Increased Innovation in the Infrastructure Sector Exploring a Client's Strategy Implementation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Managing Change for Increased Innovation in the Infrastructure Sector Exploring a Client's Strategy Implementation
2020 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Strategy implementation for driving innovation and change within the infrastructure sector is important because the path from making a decision to change to actually reaching the intended vision is complex. A client needs to find strategies for how to stimulate innovation when the client has to go via the contractor during the execution of a project. The contractors are therefore important in achieving the intention of increasing the innovation rate in the sector in general. A client interested in enabling innovation must find and utilise strategies within the relationship with their contractors. That a client should stimulate innovation has been established in earlier research; however, how this could be done is less studied.

The client in this study, the Swedish Transport Administration, has decided upon two strategies to increase the innovation rate: a change to procuring design-build (DB) contracts instead of design-bid-build (DBB) contracts, and increasing the number of foreign contractors in the Swedish infrastructure sector. The purpose of this thesis is to explore the implementation of these two strategies — DB contracts and working with foreign contractors — with a focus on the perceived challenges for both client and contractors.

The method used has been a multi-case study with 40 semi-structured interviews with project managers, procurement officers, project directors, site controllers, site managers, and project engineers in eight different cases. The empirical data are all from Swedish infrastructure projects with a duration of 1 to 10 years. Some of the cases have been multicultural and multilingual.

 The findings of this study are that, firstly, the client seems not to have made the transition entirely to the DB contract setting, resulting in a mix between the two contract types. This results in confusion for both the domestic and foreign contractors. The domestic contractors in general have not fully adapted to the new contract type where they are to take more responsibility, and the foreign contractors are more used to the DB contract and therefore feel confused by the client not utilising it as intended. Secondly, the strategy of increasing the number of foreign contractors has been fruitful. There are a number of foreign contractors that have both submitted tenders to the Swedish Transport Administration, and established themselves in Sweden. There are, however, five different categories of perceived challenges that have been identified. These categories are economic, political, procurement-related, social, and project-related challenges for foreign contractors after entering in the Swedish infrastructure sector.

The contributions of this thesis are that the client’s role in strategy implementation should be further explored, and that perceived challenges should warrant attention. This thesis focuses on two strategies on how the path towards innovation could look, from both client and contractor perspective, resulting in a theoretical contribution to the client-driven innovation literature, as well as construction management literature. By being aware of the challenges and that changing the project delivery system is more than changing the name of the contract, a client could ease a contractor’s situation and therefore enable them to focus on innovation and improvements.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Luleå University of Technology, 2020
Series
Licentiate thesis / Luleå University of Technology, ISSN 1402-1757
National Category
Construction Management
Research subject
Construction Management and Building Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-77565 (URN)978-91-7790-524-0 (ISBN)978-91-7790-525-7 (ISBN)
Presentation
2020-03-27, F231, Luleå tekniska universitet, Luleå, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Available from: 2020-01-30 Created: 2020-01-30 Last updated: 2020-03-09Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf