Process transparency for sustainable building delivery

Leidy Klotz, Michael Horman, David Riley, John Bechtel
2009 International Journal of Sustainable Engineering  
The construction and operation of buildings have considerable impacts, accounting for more than one third of all material and energy flows worldwide. A greater market share of sustainable buildings, which seek to reduce the associated negative impacts, is an essential part of plans to address global problems such as energy and water shortages, and climate change. Proven strategies and technologies exist today for more sustainable buildings, yet a pressing need to improve their implementation
more » ... ains. The processes for planning, designing, building and operating, or "delivering," these sustainable buildings are often complex and unfamiliar to the stakeholders (e.g., owners, designers and constructors) whose collaboration is essential to sustainable solutions. In other industries, process transparency helps facilitate complex, unfamiliar processes by making situations; including status, goals and rules; visible to all stakeholders. This research revealed the possibility of cost savings for sustainable buildings through increased process transparency by comparing the delivery of recently completed sustainable building projects to hypothetical, "counterfactual," delivery of the same projects with complete process transparency. Building on this finding, one strategy for enhancing process transparency was also studied. Process maps, which are visual aids for picturing work processes, were developed. Then, quizzes and surveys were used to study the influence of process mapping on transparency. Primary contributions of this research include a rigorous method for applying counterfactual analyses to project delivery, evidence that reduced costs for sustainable buildings are possible by increasing delivery process transparency, and evidence that process mapping may be considered as a method to enhance process transparency. Phelps, Claudia Torres and others in the Lean and Green research initiative; and faculty
doi:10.1080/19397030902989282 fatcat:5zndz4jyznbz7pjo77efj4hh2u