Chapter 24Case Studies: Sustainable Design, Innovation and Competitiveness in Construction Firms

Arthlene Amos and Herbert Robinson

24.1 Introduction

Construction firms are experiencing greater demands for reducing their carbon footprint due to sustainability. As a result, there is gradual shift away from traditional methods to environmentally friendly design and construction processes. This chapter examines the challenges faced by construction firms as a result of sustainability and its impact on innovation and competitiveness. Using a case study strategy, the sustainability challenges of five organisations in various positions of the construction supply chain are discussed. The chapter also explores how sustainability in construction firms is driving changes in their strategy, which has triggered process, design and product innovation influencing competitiveness and profitability both in the short and long term. Following this introduction, the concept of sustainable development and key drivers influencing sustainability strategies of construction firms are reviewed. The case study findings, analysis and discussion of the key issues based on the experience of five construction firms are presented and the lessons learned with the implications for construction firms are also discussed.

24.2 Background and context

The construction industry uses a significant amount of energy and generates an astounding amount of waste both from excess materials, which cannot be reused, and from ...

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