The cultural shift of the construction industry of Hong Kong under the influence of sustainable development

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The cultural shift of the construction industry of Hong Kong under the influence of sustainable development


Author: Yip, Chi-po Robin
Title: The cultural shift of the construction industry of Hong Kong under the influence of sustainable development
Degree: Ph.D.
Year: 2009
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations.
Construction industry -- China -- Hong Kong.
Sustainable development -- China -- Hong Kong.
Department: Dept. of Civil and Structural Engineering
Pages: xiv, 265 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm.
Language: English
InnoPac Record:
Abstract: Sustainability per se is the outcome of a global change in human culture and embodies entirely new values and consciousness through sustainable development activities. Sustainable development has become a continuous mission for human beings to establish a sustainable society which will be equally prosperous for future generations. A genuinely sustainable society is based upon and run by citizens who initiate developments in sustainable ways according to a recognized code of conduct - the sustainable culture. Sustainable culture is not static; it changes over time as a dynamic process adapting to external and internal forces that demand for continuous growth and development towards sustainability. The movement of sustainable culture over a certain time interval (cultural shift) records the rate of any positive or negative changes. It reflects the progress on sustainability in a society. This study focuses on the construction industry and the participants of the construction industry of Hong Kong are categorized into five stakeholder groups according to their functional input viz. Government, Developer, Consultant, Contractor and Non-professional Frontline Participant. A cultural shift within the construction industry is a reflection of the changes in attitudes and practices among participants in project development, design and construction operations. The changes are embodied in attitudinal and behavioral cultural components comprising awareness, concern, motivation and implementation. The objectives of this research study are to quantify the changes in these cultural components and to investigate the causes and implications of such changes. The changes are measured by an exclusively designed tool, the T-model, which firstly gathers changes of these cultural components among stakeholders through two comprehensive questionnaire surveys and subsequently converts the surveyed data into cultural scores. Continuous measurement in suitable intervals will capture the trend of movement of sustainable culture and illustrates the culture shift in a simple curve. The curve will be useful reference material for decision-makers in both the Government and private sectors to understand the changes that have occurred or are underway, thus, enabling them to review and adjust policies to align with the trend of cultural changes, or to allow effective modifications that will guide the construction industry of Hong Kong towards being a sustainable society. The questionnaire surveys have been conducted in years 2004 and 2006 among construction participants in managerial and supervisory levels. The data of 446 and 317 valid responses from the two questionnaire surveys have been synthesized by the T-model which illustrated in retrospect a cultural shift from the year 2000 to 2006. To validate the results by a qualitative approach, structured interviews have been conducted with different construction stakeholders to gather their views on cultural shift. The measured results have been further cross-referenced with four detailed case studies. The results show that positive cultural shift is found within the research time frame of this study. As such, this study elucidates the changes of sustainable culture within the stakeholder groups, the movements of the four cultural components and the eventual cultural shift of the construction industry of Hong Kong.

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