15Sustained Innovation Uptake in Construction

Graeme D. Larsen

15.1 Introduction

Chapter 1 of this book highlighted the continued criticism of the construction sector regarding the alleged lack of innovation. This chapter seeks to offer an alternative perspective and to highlight how and where the construction sector can, in fact, be seen as ‘innovative’ (Winch, 2003). In doing so, the construction sector is championed as a place where innovative activity occurs if we seek to look in the right places and with the right methodology. Many of the studies claiming the construction sector is not innovative use approaches and criteria lacking suitable contextual sensitivity, developed for and derived from very different contextual settings, and thus do not enable the construction sector to shine.

The current chapter seeks to understand how the construction sector will need to evolve and change to meet the challenges outlined in the introductory chapter, and takes the stance that in order to either evolve or change then something ‘different’ and ‘new’ needs to happen. This ‘newness’ is therefore aligned with the need to innovate, together with understanding innovation and, most importantly, its sustained uptake within the sector continuing to 2050. Therefore, the things that will make us sustainable, that will allow us to move to a sustainable built environment by 2050 will be innovations. They may be innovations in materials, digital technologies, processes, working practices or ...

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