Construction Sites: Using Lean Principles to Seek Broader Implementations

Flavio Augusto Picchi1 & Ariovaldo Denis Granja2

1Associate Professor, Architecture and Construction Department, School of Civil Engineering, Architecture and Urban Design. Av. Albert Einstein, 951, Caixa Postal 6021, Univ. of Campinas, Campinas/SP, Brazil, CEP 13084-971, Phone +55 19/3788-2082, FAX 19/3788-2411, [email protected].
2Director, Lean fustitute Brazil, Rua Topazio 911, Sao Paulo/SP, Brazil, CEP 04105-063, Phone +55 11/5571-6887, FAX 1115571-0804, :[email protected]


This paper aims to evaluate Lean Thinking applications possibilities concerned with the construction job site flows, by identifying the potential of using lean principles to structure implementations, seeking broader results. From one hand, previous studies indicate that it is feasible to use lean tools and techniques in construction sites. On the other, poor implementations of lean concepts are often observed when tools are implemented in isolation, without a full lean system perspective. In a manufacturing environment, mapping the value stream is an essential step in creating a lean endeavor, generally followed by the implementation of flow and pull tools. The authors argue that using the five lean principles is a step in the right direction also on construction sites, enabling the discussion of Lean Thinking applications from a rather fragmented and isolated view to a strategic point of view. Finally, the authors suggest actions for implementing available lean tools as part of a broader perspective, based on lean principles.


Lean Thinking, lean construction, construction management, construction site, flow and pull.



Picchi, F. A. & Granja, A. D. 2004. Construction Sites: Using Lean Principles to Seek Broader Implementations, 12th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction , -.

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