A competitive future for UK construction?

Recent decades have witnessed various industry-focussed government reports that have urged construction stakeholders to look further ahead by focusing on future-oriented issues such as continuous performance improvement, sustainability, training, and research and development. Evidence from a recent industry workshop of senior construction managers has shown that the majority have been involved in the formulation of long-term strategic planning and decision making, but in an informal, unstructured and ad-hoc manner using a diverse range of techniques and information. It is argued that this approach may not be sufficiently robust for companies to adequately plan ahead within the fast-moving pace of the modern construction sector. Emanating from a motivation for developing a new perspective of the current competitiveness initiatives, an ongoing three-year research project at the universities of Loughborough, Reading and Salford aims to identify and understand the challenges and opportunities confronting the UK construction sector over the next 10 to 20 years. To date, 24 industry workshops and interviews have been conducted and nearly 70 causal maps and future scenarios constructed on a broad range of issues, themes and subjects pertinent to the future of the uk construction sector.