Model-based groupware solution for distributed real-time collaborative 4D planning via teamwork
Zhou, W., Georgakis, P., Heesom, D. and Feng, X. (2012) Model-based groupware solution for distributed real-time collaborative 4D planning via teamwork. Journal of Computing in Civil Engineerin, 26 (5). pp. 597-611. ISSN 1943-5487
To link to this article DOI: 10.1061/(ASCE)CP.1943-5487.0000153
Construction planning plays a fundamental role in construction project management that requires team working among planners from a diverse range of disciplines and in geographically dispersed working situations. Model-based four-dimensional (4D) computer-aided design (CAD) groupware, though considered a possible approach to supporting collaborative planning, is still short of effective collaborative mechanisms for teamwork due to methodological, technological and social challenges. Targeting this problem, this paper proposes a model-based groupware solution to enable a group of multidisciplinary planners to perform real-time collaborative 4D planning across the Internet. In the light of the interactive definition method, and its computer-supported collaborative work (CSCW) design analysis, the paper discusses the realization of interactive collaborative mechanisms from software architecture, application mode, and data exchange protocol. These mechanisms have been integrated into a groupware solution, which was validated by a planning team in a truly geographically dispersed condition. Analysis of the validation results revealed that the proposed solution is feasible for real-time collaborative 4D planning to gain a robust construction plan through collaborative teamwork. The realization of this solution triggers further considerations about its enhancement for wider groupware applications.