Construction Risk Management Decision

 Construction Risk Management Decision Making Understanding Current Practices

Construction Risk Management Decision

There are extensive psychometric research and publications that confirm the influence of behavioural stimulus in intuitive risk management decision-making systems (Kahneman and Tversky 1982a; Tversky and Kahneman 2002; Finucane et al. 2003; Slovic 2010; Kahneman 2011). The existing construction management publications however appear limited in exploring the behavioural patterns underpinning the high incidence of intuitive construction risk management practices. The purpose of this book therefore is to address the data gap, by extending current empirical and analytical evidence from systems thinking and behavioural sciences into construction risk management research, to strengthen their theoretical basis and further illuminate emerging theoretical extensions.

The empirical findings from four case qualitative research methodology have revealed substantial evidence in support of three theoretical propositions: risk perception categorisation within the construction project delivery system reflecting the structure of the differentiated specialist roles, psychological difficulties associated with intuitive risk identificationm of events outside the scope of our heuristics, and incompatibilities of mixing decision processing approaches and data presentation formats from different systems of thinking and decision-making.
The subsequent analytical discussions have highlighted the need to rethink constructionm risk management practices, by introducing behavioural science training to construction project management students and professionals. This will equip them with the requisite
competencies to identify and harmonise the different affective heuristics, as well as the technical variations of the specialist roles involved in project delivery. There is also the need to consider revising construction risk data presentation from statistics and probability to qualitative formats to complement the current intuitive construction risk management decision-making practices.

A Risk Management Approach to Construction Project Delivery Hazard and uncertainty have always been a part of human condition (Lock 2003; Beck 2007). The early humans at previlization faced the daily challenge of protecting themselves against attacks from wild animals and hostile tribes. The modern society may have
developed remedies against those threats, but there are equally other factors that threaten our persistence, like the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. The emergence of vaccines has provided glimmers of hope that we may be heading towards the end of the pandemic. The fact however remains that there will always be other natural and social menace that challenges human survival.
Social hazards and uncertainties were conventionally defined and managed by the religious and political leaders occupying the top of the vertical social structure. This was done through the reliance on guided morality, superstition, taboos, and rituals (Japp and Kusche 2008). The contemporary transition of multiple differentiated functional subsystems replacing the stratified vertical system has expanded social risk communication into the public realm (Japp and Kusche 2008). According to Loose more et al. (2006), the increased public awareness on the risk variables associated with both personal and corporate activities and increased media reportage on the impact of risk events have accounted for the heighten discussions on risk and influenced public attitude to risk management. A failed suicide bomb attack in which the perpetuators planned to detonate liquid explosives on several aircrafts traveling from Heathrow Airport to the United States of America in 2006 led to public discussions on the risk posed by liquids on aircrafts, resulting in a European Union imposition of restrictions on carrying liquids on aircrafts, which subsequently has become a world-wide ban. The use of Blackberry Instant Messenger system to elude police intelligence by the perpetuators of the August 2011 British riots triggered public discussions on the security risk associated with smart phones (The Economic Times 2011).


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