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Epistemological differences and new technology in construction

Dowsett, R., Harty, C. and Davies, R. (2017) Epistemological differences and new technology in construction. In: 33rd Annual ARCOM Conference, 4-6 September 2017, Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, UK, pp. 714-723.

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Abstract/Summary

New technology within the construction industry originates from appeals to replicate the efficiencies seen in other sectors such as automation and manufacturing and construction firms are increasingly engaging in collaborative research and development (R&D) projects with sector specialists. These R&D projects create new communities of practice with a shared collection of knowledge, experience, and problem-solving approaches representing the disparate expertise of each member contributing to the development of new and innovative technological solutions. However, fundamental epistemological differences between the collaborating firms can hinder this process. Shared knowledge and experience to develop ideas is not easily communicated across a project team within which each member possesses a differing approach to understanding the common problem. This paper presents early research engagement in an R&D project investigating the potential of utilising Flexible Robotic Assembly Modules in the Built Environment (FRAMBE). Challenges observed to date during the process of developing FRAMBE as a technological solution are described. This paper aims to exemplify communication issues within cross-sector R&D projects to argue that boundary objects offer a means to consider the epistemological differences within communities of practice, establish a common understanding of the problem, and therefore ways in which to resolve issues surrounding technology development.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Science > School of the Built Environment > Construction Management and Engineering > Digital Practices
ID Code:74717
Additional Information:ISBN: 9780995546318

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