Who is the key decision maker in the structural frame selection process?

Haroglu, H., Glass, J., Thorpe, T. and Goodchild, C. (2008) Who is the key decision maker in the structural frame selection process? In: Excellence in Concrete Construction through Innovation; 09 - 10 Sep 2008, Kingston upon Thames, U.K..


ABSTRACT: Selecting the correct structural frame is crucial to a project’s feasibility and success, but this de-cision can have profound implications for the future performance of a building project. In practice, the even-tual choice of a frame may involve various parties including client, project manager, cost consultant, structural engineer, architect, main contractor, etc. This paper presents research findings on the levels of influence of these project team members on the structural frame selection process. It describes the results of a two-year study in which various research methods were undertaken including a state-of-the-art literature review, semi-structured interviews and a postal questionnaire survey. The interviews showed that cost consultants, project managers and clients were found to be the most influential people in the structural frame decision-making pro-cess, so a postal questionnaire survey was sent to a sample of UK companies operating in these areas to further examine their priorities and views in detail. The data collected was subsequently analyzed and produced a rank ordering of project team members in relation to the influence they have on the choice of frame type at each stage of design process. In fact, they agreed that the structural engineer was the most influential deci-sion-maker in the structural frame selection process. So, this paper asks the question ‘who really is the key de-cision maker?’ The conclusions will be of interest to all those concerned with project teams, structural frame design and selection and effective leadership in decision making.

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