Designing for construction workers’ occupational health and safety: a case study of socio-material complexity
AbstractDrawing upon an empirical analysis of the design and construction of a food processing facility, a theoretical understanding of the impact of design decision-making on the occupational health and safety (OHS) of construction workers is developed. It is argued that current policy and legislative approaches to Construction Hazard Prevention through Design (CHPtD) are inherently limited because they do not adequately reflect the socio-material complexity of decision-making in construction design. Specifically, the simplistic attribution of responsibility to a single socio-technical actor, ‘the designer’, does not reflect the multiple and disparate influences that impact upon OHS outcomes. Nor do existing CHPtD policy frameworks, management processes and tools recognize the manner in which the interactions and associations between relevant project stakeholders and various non-human artefacts shape (and are also influenced by) the evolution of design decisions. Drawing on actor-network theory (ANT) and using embedded units within a case study approach, the interactions between human actors and non-human artefacts are explored in relation to the design of four components of the food processing facility. The way in which design decisions unfolded and shaped OHS experiences during the construction stage of the project is revealed. The research highlights limitations inherent in current approaches to the management of CHPtD and the need to develop a more robust theoretically based approach to integrating OHS considerations into construction design practice.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Construction Management and Economics.
Volume (Year): 30 (2012)
Issue (Month): 5 (February)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.tandfonline.com/RCME20
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Michael McNulty).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.