https://doi.org/10.24928/2018/0409

Using Design Science Research and Action Research to Bridge the Gap Between Theory and Practice in Lean Construction Research

Sheriz Khan1 & Patricia Tzortzopoulos2

1PhD (Architecture), University of Huddersfield, United Kingdom, Telephone: +1 (321) 674-0309, sherizkhan@yahoo.com
2Professorof Integrated Design/Associate Dean of Research and Enterprise, School of Art, Design and Architecture, University of Huddersfield, United Kingdom. Fax: (+44) 01484 472440, p.tzortzopoulos@hud.ac.uk

Abstract

The descriptive approaches, like case study, interview, survey, observation and document analysis, widely used by the lean construction community to investigate managerial problems in the construction industry, typically provide explanations of problems and not solutions to them, leaving a gap between theory and practice. Two prescriptive approaches—design science research and action research—are therefore recommended. Design science research and action research offer alternative approaches for studying, understanding and solving practical problems and testing innovative solutions in design and construction management, for bridging the gap between theory and practice and for making academic research more relevant to practice.They can be used to develop and/or test solutions to managerial problems in the construction industry and generate new knowledge and/or theory.The purpose of this paper is to describe design science research and action research and discuss three cases of lean construction research in which these approaches were used effectively.

Keywords

Design Science Research (DSR), Action Research (AR), Lean Construction (LC), the Last Planner System (LPS), Benefit Realization

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Reference

Khan, S. & Tzortzopoulos, P. 2018, 'Using Design Science Research and Action Research to Bridge the Gap Between Theory and Practice in Lean Construction Research' In:, 26th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. Chennai, India, 18-20 Jul 2018. pp 209-219

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