Academic arrogance or industry intransigence: Innovation inertia in the construction industry

Blismas, N, McCoy, A and Lingard, H 2009, 'Academic arrogance or industry intransigence: Innovation inertia in the construction industry', in John McCarthy (chairman) (ed.) Proceedings of the Global Innovation in Construction Conference, Loughborough, United KingdomLoughborough, United Kingdom, 13 - 16 September 2009, pp. 481-491.


Document type: Conference Paper
Collection: Conference Papers

Title Academic arrogance or industry intransigence: Innovation inertia in the construction industry
Author(s) Blismas, N
McCoy, A
Lingard, H
Year 2009
Conference name Global Innovation in Construction Conference 2009
Conference location Loughborough, United KingdomLoughborough, United Kingdom
Conference dates 13 - 16 September 2009
Proceedings title Proceedings of the Global Innovation in Construction Conference
Editor(s) John McCarthy (chairman)
Start page 481
End page 491
Total pages 11
Abstract There is growing recognition that academic research outputs should be robustly evaluated. Current evaluation models in Australia and the United Kingdom are beginning to emphasise the impact of research. There remains a lack of clarity about how this impact can be practically gauged. One measure is the number of citations of a published work in other published documents. While this is a useful measure of the impact of research on the work of other researchers, this is likely to be a poor indicator of the impact of research on industry practice and outcomes. Academics are public servants, whose income (and much research funding) is provided by governments. As such, academics have a professional responsibility to undertake research that is relevant, useful and provides some societal benefit. This is particularly true in the case of construction academics whose activities are industryspecific and whose research must be driven by the desire to help the construction industry to solve its problems and improve its practices, processes and performance. This paper examines the relationship between industry and academia in the field of construction. In particular, it explores the barriers to the transfer of research outcomes into industry practice. A cyclical model of translational research is argued and presented as a useful mechanism for understanding the translational position of ones research. A selection of current and recently completed research projects at RMIT University are positioned within this model and used to support a discussion of the limitations of these projects and inherent challenges for the translation of research outcomes into industry practice. To further demonstrate the translational value of the model, an example of an industry engagement and feedback model produced by Virginia Tech is briefly examined.
Subjects Building Construction Management and Project Planning
Keyword(s) Industry
innovation
practice
translational research
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