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Dilettantes, discipline and discourse: requirements management for construction

Fernie, S., Green, S. D. ORCID: and Weller, S.J. (2003) Dilettantes, discipline and discourse: requirements management for construction. Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, 10 (5). pp. 354-367. ISSN 0969-9988

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1108/09699980310502964


Requirements management (RM), as practised in the aerospace and defence sectors, attracts interest from construction researchers in response to longstanding problems of project definition. Doubts are expressed whether RM offers a new discipline for construction practitioners or whether it repeats previous exhortations to adopt a more disciplined way of working. Whilst systems engineering has an established track record of addressing complex technical problems, its extension to socially complex problems has been challenged. The dominant storyline of RM is one of procedural rationality and RM is commonly presented as a means of controlling dilettante behaviour. Interviews with RM practitioners suggest a considerable gulf between the dominant storyline in the literature and how practitioners operate in practice. The paper challenges construction researchers interested in RM to reflect more upon the theoretical debates that underpin current equivalent practices in construction and the disparity between espoused and enacted practice.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of the Built Environment > Organisation, People and Technology group
ID Code:11983
Uncontrolled Keywords:Construction industry, Context-sensitive languages, Project management, Systems engineering

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