A review of the relationship between skills and productivity in construction

Mohamed Abdel-Wahab, Andrew R.J. Dainty, Stephen G. Ison

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Human resources are an important factor in the development of the construction industry and therefore understanding the contribution of the workforce skills to the industry’s productivity performance is crucial. This is a requirement for informing targeted actions that would induce productivity gains to the industry. This is particularly relevant as the UK government considers ‘skills’ key driver of productivity across different sectors of the economy. A survey of the existing literature relating to skills and productivity reveals common themes namely: 1) Logistics and late material delivery, 2) Workforce skills, 3) Labour training, and 4) Education attainment (qualification levels). It is concluded, at best, that the existing evidence linking skills and productivity is patchy and inconsistent without providing clear guidelines as to how skills development could generate productivity gains at the firm level. This presents a challenge for policy makers and thus there is an urgent need for conducting a firm level enquiry within the context of the construction industry to fill this knowledge gap.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationConstruction in the XXI Century: Local and Global Challenges
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the Joint CIB W065/W055/W086 Symposium
EditorsRoberto Pietroforte, Enrico De Angelis, Francesco Polverino
PublisherEdizioni Scientifiche Italiane
Number of pages1
ISBN (Print)9788849513394, 8849513399
Publication statusPublished - 2006
EventJoint CIB W065/W055/W086 Symposium: Construction in the XXI Century: Local and Global Challenges - Rome, Italy
Duration: 18 Oct 200620 Oct 2006
http://www.cibworld.nl/site/searchn/results.html?offset=20&wtgtype=W&wtgrid=9&wtgtypef=&wtgridf=&pth=&pthf=&year=&q= (List of meetings - scroll down and click on "Download news article")


ConferenceJoint CIB W065/W055/W086 Symposium
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