The consolidation of the Lean Construction theory depends on the application of its principles and concepts by practitioners. Only feedback from the construction industry itself can support further research on the analysis and adaptation of the Lean Production principles to the construction process. Therefore, it is necessary to work on construction managers education in order to incorporate the lean production concepts and approaches in their daily practice. This paper describes an ongoing research project concerned with the development of construction management training programmes on lean construction, aiming at fostering changes of paradigm in process management. An exploratory study on the learning process of undergraduate students was carried out, focusing mainly on the relationship between teacher and students along lectures dealing with lean construction concepts and principles. The study has indicated that it is relatively straightforward for the students to understand and to apply some basic concepts like process, operation, conversion and flow activities and the general concept of waste. But it has also pointed out that it is not so easy for them to understand and comprehensively incorporate the lean construction principles and approaches. This paper discusses the complex problem connected to the change of paradigm and the learning process involved in the introduction of the lean construction theory in construction management training programmes.
Lean construction, learning, management education.