Reading University wins CIOB award

The Chartered Institute for Building (CIOB) ‘Innovation Research Paper’ Award 2008/9 has been won by Professor Stuart Green.Green of the University’s School of Construction Management and Engineering won on behalf of a multi-university research team.

The award is part of the CIOB’s International Innovation and Research Awards 2008/09. The three-year project, ‘The Big Ideas’, was a collaboration between the University of Reading, the University of Loughborough and the University of Salford. The project was coordinated by the University of Reading and Professor Green was the lead researcher. It was funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to bring a fresh perspective to competitiveness in the UK construction industry.

Professor Green said: “This has been a challenging and tremendously rewarding project which we would hold up as an exemplar of ‘co-production research’. The insights gained are founded on a prolonged interaction with a wide diversity of industry partners. Our success is attributable to a large research team spread across the three universities. I have been fortunate to have been supported throughout by an excellent research team here at Reading. In particular, by Dr Abbas Elmualim, Dr Chris Harty, Dr Graeme Larsen and Dr Chung-Chin Kao.”

The project was based on the observation that the post-Egan industry improvement agenda was becoming increasingly disconnected from the day-to-day challenges faced by firms in the construction sector. The aim was to bring a fresh perspective to the construction competitiveness research agenda by better understanding how competitiveness is enacted within the sector, and how construction firms might respond to opportunities in the future.

“The onset of the current recession makes the underlying messages even more important than they were when the market was buoyant. We have developed tools which can support the thinking necessary to move towards an innovation-based model of competitiveness. These tools recognise that the sector’s capabilities are not rooted within individual firms, but are embedded within complex networks of relational ties that transcend organisational boundaries.”

In addition, Christopher Castle, a student at the University of Reading, was Commended in the Masters Dissertation Awards for his dissertation on ‘Green Knowledge Integration’.

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