Implications of Construction 4.0 to the workforce and organizational structures

Borja García de Soto, Isolda Agustí-Juan, Samuel Joss, Jens Hunhevicz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The counterpart of Industry 4.0 in the AEC/FM industry is known as Construction 4.0. Its essence is the digitalization and automation of the AEC/FM industry. As robots and other technologies make their way into the different phases of the lifecycle of construction projects, the concern about the future of jobs and wages will increase. While the use of robotics has the potential to improve productivity and safety, it should not necessarily reduce total employment in the construction sector in the long run. It is expected that existing roles will evolve, and new roles will be created (e.g., in addition to designers there will be a need for employees with digital skills). Focusing on the construction phase of a robotically built concrete wall, the different roles were evaluated. From this study, it was found that there will be a time in which conventional construction and robotic technologies will coexist, leading to a higher job variability and new roles, both at the managerial and operations/execution levels. Although this study is not meant to be an exact representation of how the AEC/FM roles will change as a consequence of Construction 4.0, it opens the debate and research in this area.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalInternational Journal of Construction Management
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

Keywords

  • Construction 4.0
  • construction automation
  • digital fabrication (dfab)
  • human–robot interaction
  • industrialized construction
  • organizational structure
  • platform-based integration
  • project delivery and contract strategies
  • project-based integration
  • robotic construction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

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