Innovation in the road and bridge industry

Manley, Karen & Rose, Tim (2013) Innovation in the road and bridge industry. In Anderson, Timothy, Daim, Tugrul, Cetindamar, Dilek, Niwa, Kiyoshi, & Perma, Gary (Eds.) Proceedings of PICMET '13 : Technology Management for Emerging Technologies, Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology, San Jose, California, USA, pp. 2468-2474.

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This paper reviews innovation activity in a key service industry – road and bridge construction. Based on a large-scale Australian survey and descriptive statistics, the paper finds that there is little difference in innovation levels between different types of industry participants and that innovation is difficult to implement. The survey gathered responses from suppliers, consultants, contracts and clients and compared results across these four industry sectors.

The absorptive capacity and relationship capacities of respondents were also investigated. One in five respondents had poor absorptive capacity. Suppliers were found to the most effective learners and were the best adopters of ideas from outside their organisations and consultants were the least effective. Australian construction organisations have relatively good relationship skills because relationship-based contracts are common compared to other countries. Indeed, the survey found that nearly 60% of respondents had experience with such contracts, with clients having more experience than the other three sectors.

The results have implications for the measurement of innovation in project-based industries, and the relative roles of clients and suppliers in driving innovation in the construction industry. Further research will examine the extent to which particular governance mechanisms within relationship contracts lead to improved innovation and project performance.

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ID Code: 64450
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > BUILDING (120200) > Building Construction Management and Project Planning (120201)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 PICMET
Deposited On: 14 Nov 2013 00:30
Last Modified: 21 Jun 2017 14:48

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