Understanding Labour Productivity as an Emergent Property of Individual and Crew Interactions on a Construction Site

Matt Watkins1, Amlan Mukherjee2, Nilufer Onder3 & Kris G. Mattila4

1Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Computer Science, Michigan Tech. USA Phone +1 906- 487-1952, mtwatkin@mtu.edu
2Assistant Professor, Department of Civil and Env. Engineering, Michigan Tech.. USA Phone +1 906- 487-1952, amukherj@mtu.edu
3Associate Professor, Department of Computer Science, Michigan Tech.. USA Phone +1 906-487- 1641, nilufer@mtu.edu
4Associate Professor, Department of Civil and Env. Engineering, Michigan Tech.. USA Phone +1 906- 487-2523, mattila@mtu.edu

Abstract

The construction site is a complex system composed of interactions in space between individual crewmembers and crews. Congestion often leads to lowered productivity. Lean construction research has shown that effective work flow management can improve construction labour performance, and labour flow contributes to lean work flow. The existing body of research in the study of construction labour productivity has primarily used a top-down approach to modelling and understanding the impacts of space congestion on labour productivity. In this paper, we propose a bottom-up approach and explore whether labour productivity on a construction site can be treated as an emergent property resulting from interactions between individual crewmembers and different crews. We present our pilot implementation and initial results depicting the relative value of various areas of space and the effect of the number of available tasks on congestion.

Keywords

Agent Based Modelling, Productivity, Space Allocation

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Reference

Watkins, M. , Mukherjee, A. , Onder, N. & Mattila, K.G. 2007, 'Understanding Labour Productivity as an Emergent Property of Individual and Crew Interactions on a Construction Site' In:, Pasquire, C.L, C.L. & Tzortzopoulos, P., 15th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. East Lansing, Michigan, USA, 18-20 Jul 2007. pp 400-405

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