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Addressing specialization and fragmentation: product platform development in construction consultancy firms

Jones, K; Mosca, L; Whyte, J; Davies, A; Glass, J; (2021) Addressing specialization and fragmentation: product platform development in construction consultancy firms. Construction Management and Economics 10.1080/01446193.2021.1983187. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Construction product platforms provide the opportunity to improve productivity in construction projects while maintaining heterogeneity of output. The growing literature on construction product platforms describes how product suppliers develop product platforms either top-down or bottom-up, independently from project delivery. Through a single case study of a consultancy firm, this paper shows how specialist consultancy firms operating in the construction sector develop their own product platform on projects while iteratively developing and augmenting their delivery capabilities. Distinguishing between activity integration, coordination, and consolidation, the platform development process highlights how vertical and horizontal consolidation of capabilities within the engineering phase of delivery enables early resolution of both product and process specifications. This means that vertical coordination between engineering and manufacturing phases can be managed by a fully specified contract, rather than acquisition. The analysis of the case show how construction can be more closely aligned with the linear and sequential models found in manufacturing through clarifying and distinguishing the roles of engineering, manufacturing, finishing and sub-assembly.

Type: Article
Title: Addressing specialization and fragmentation: product platform development in construction consultancy firms
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/01446193.2021.1983187
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/01446193.2021.1983187
Language: English
Additional information: © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: Product platforms, Fragmentation, Construction, Manufacturing
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > The Bartlett Sch of Const and Proj Mgt
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10134636
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