Creating a project-based learning-loop within the construction phase of healthcare infrastructure projects

Service delivery in the healthcare sector is profoundly affected by the built infrastructure provided to support it. In order for a hospital environment to function optimally, there is a need to investigate how a learning culture can be nurtured within the design, construction and occupancy of healthcare facilities in order that its effect on the healing process of patients can be managed. A large focus of attention within the research conducted by the Health and Care Infrastructure Research and Innovation Centre (HaCIRIC) is centred on learning from buildings in use and post occupancy evaluation (POE). Interestingly, however, there has been little focus on capturing lessons learnt from the construction phase of projects. This could be particularly important to informing the future buildability of healthcare projects. The aim of this research is to examine how lessons learnt arising from the construction phase can be captured and fed back to designers and in some cases the client. This is in order to create a learning culture and help improve the quality of future healthcare facilities/infrastructure. The paper reports on findings of an initial literature review that explores the potential benefits and challenges for embedding such a learning culture in project-based environments. Through this literature synthesis a significant case for improving project-based organisational learning within healthcare infrastructure is provided and recommendations for the need for further empirical investigation are made.