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THE INTEGRATION OF PRODUCTION AND ENVIRONMENTAL

APPROACHES IN MANAGING CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER

POLLUTION

Sheila Belayutham

Construction site water pollution could negatively affect the environment as well as the economic and social

well-being of people. Sediment production, the major trigger of site water pollution has commonly been

managed using mitigation approaches, in isolation from the production planning. The segregation between

the undiscovered yet interrelated factors of site water pollution management practices and production

planning causes waste in time, cost and resources. Hence, this study proposes an integrated solution that

addresses both the production and environmental factors involved in reducing the risk of site water pollution.

The study starts by identifying the causes of site water pollution, followed by categorizing the causes into

distal and proximal factors using a system dynamics tool called Causal Loop Diagram. Then, the

relationship between site water pollution and construction planning is established from the perspective of

preventive approaches in regards to the environmental concept of Cleaner Production. Following that, a

production improvement approach called Lean Production is adapted into the construction scenario. Lean

Production and Cleaner Production concept is integrated to provide a holistic solution to reduce the risk of

site water pollution that enhances also the production factors. The study has been conducted using multiple

research methods that consist of systematic review, interviews and case studies. The outcome of this study

would enable the planning and management of construction works that simultaneously benefits the

environment and production aspects of a construction.


TABLE OF CONTENTS

CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background 1

1.2 Research Motivation 3

1.3 Research Problems 5

1.4 Research Aim and Objectives 6

1.5 Research Scope 6

1.6 Research Methodology 6

1.6.1 Research Method 7

1.6.2 Ethical Consideration 12

1.7 Thesis Outline 12

1.8 References 16

CHAPTER 2 CAUSAL FACTORS FOR CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER POLLUTION

2.1 Introduction 19

2.2 Misconception on the Causes of Site Water Pollution 20

2.3 Causal Theories 21

2.4 Research Method to Establish the Underlying Factors in Relation to Construction 22

Site Water Pollution

2.4.1 In-Depth Interview with Industry Practitioners 22

2.4.2 Systematic Review 24

2.4.3 Content Analysis 26

2.5 Result and Analysis for Causes of Construction Site Water Pollution 26

2.5.1 In-Depth Interview Result 27

2.5.2 Systematic Review Result 28

2.5.3 Collated Interview and Systematic Review Results into Distal and 31

Proximal Factors of Construction Site Water Pollution


2.6 Conclusion 31

2.7 References 32

CHAPTER 3 THE DYNAMICS OF DISTAL AND PROXIMAL FACTORS OF CONSTRUCTION SITE

WATER POLLUTION

3.1 Introduction 40

3.2 Causal Network 41

3.2.1 Causal Loop Diagram (CLD) 42

3.3 Research Method to Develop CLD for the Distal and Proximal Factors of Construction 43

Site Water Pollution

3.3.1 CLD Development Using Collated Systematic Review and 44

Interview Data (Stage 1)

3.3.2 Verification for the Established Causes of Site Water Pollution and 45

the Use of CLD Using Case Study (Stage 2)

3.3.3 CLD Model Validation 46

3.4 CLD Model for Construction Site Water Pollution 46

3.5 CLD for Case Project 53

3.6 Discussion 54

3.7 Conclusion 56

3.8 References 58

CHAPTER 4 THE CONCEPTION OF PREVENTION-BASED APPROACH TO MANAGE

CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER POLLUTION

4.1 Introduction 61

4.2 Concepts in Environmental Management System 62

4.2.1 Concept of Prevention 62

4.2.2 Cleaner Production (CP) and Pollution Prevention (P2) 63

4.2.3 Cleaner Production: The environmental-production improvement strategy 64

4.3 The Common Environmental Approach in Managing Construction Site Water Pollution 65
4.3.1 Mitigation Approach 65

4.4 Construction Planning and Operation 65

4.4.1 Construction Planning 66

4.4.2 Construction Operation 67

4.4.2.1 Lean production / lean thinking 68

4.4.2.2 Lean and the Environment 69

4.5 Research Method for Conceptual Integration between Construction Management and 70

Environmental Prevention Approaches

4.5.1 Stage 1 71

4.5.2 Stage 2 72

4.6 Relationship between Construction Planning and Water Pollution Prevention 74

4.6.1 Preventive approaches to manage runoff and erosion 74

4.6.2 Theoretical linkage between WP3 and Construction Planning 78

4.7 Relationship Cleaner Production and Lean Production Approach 80

(Clean-Lean) Approach

4.7.1 Integrated Cleaner Production (CP) and Lean Production (LP) 82

4.8 Conclusion 85

4.9 References 85

CHAPTER 5 INDUSTRY ENHANCED INTEGRATION OF CONSTRUCTION PLANNING WITH

WATER POLLUTION PREVENTION PRACTICES FRAMEWORK

5.1 Introduction 95

5.2 Research Method to Identify Industry Input on the Integrated Framework for 95

Construction Planning and Water Pollution Prevention Practices

5.2.1 Semi-Structured Interview 96

5.2.2 Description of Respondents 97

5.2.3 Deductive data analysis 99

5.3 Industrial Input on the Significance of WP3 as part of Construction Planning 99


5.3.1 Construction Schedule 100

5.3.2 Construction Method 101

5.3.3 Construction Site Layout 102

5.4 Theoretical-Practical Based Framework 103

5.5 Conclusion 105

5.6 References 106

CHAPTER 6 CLD ENHANCED CLEAN-LEAN APPROACH TO MANAGE THE DISTAL FACTOR

(ADMINISTRATIVE PROCESSES) OF CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER POLLUTION

6.1 Introduction 108

6.2 The Side-Lined Administrative Processes in Construction Performance Improvement 109

6.3 Lean Administration in Construction 111

6.4 Project Background 112

6.5 Research Phases to Develop Clean-Lean Administrative Processes 114

6.5.1 Causal Loop Diagram (CLD 116

6.5.2 Case Study 116

6.5.3 Lean Mapping 117

6.5.4 Performance Metrics 117

6.6 Analytical Framework of the Relationship between the administrative process waste, 120

production (time) and environmental (sediment pollution) variable

6.7 Lean-Based Approach to Improve the Administrative Process 122

6.7.1 Current Mapping for the Variation Order (V. O.) Approval Process 123

6.7.2 The use of CLD in Enhancing the Functionalities of the VS-PM 126

6.7.3 Improvements and Future Map for the V.O. Approval Process 127

6.8 Discussion and Conclusion 131

6.9 References 131

6.10 Chapter Appendix 141


CHAPTER 7 CLEAN-LEAN APPROACH TO MANAGE THE PROXIMAL FACTOR (EARTHWORK

PRODUCTION) OF CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER POLLUTION

7.1 Introduction 142

7.2 The Proximal Factor of Earthwork Production 144

7.3 Research Method for Clean-Lean Earthwork 144

7.3.1 Case Study Clean-Lean Method for Earthwork 144

7.4 Clean-Lean Method Development 145

7.4.1 Determination of VALUE 146

7.4.2 Identification and Mapping of the VALUE STREAM 149

7.4.3 FLOW Creation through Waste Elimination 154

7.4.4 Respond to Customer PULL 158

7.4.5 CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT to Pursue Perfection 159

7.5 Conclusion 162

7.6 References 163

7.7 Chapter Appendix 169

CHAPTER 8 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

8.1 Introduction 170

8.2 Achievement of Research Objectives 170

8.2.1 Objective 1: Identification and Categorization on the Causes 170

of Site Water Pollution into Distal and Proximal Factors

8.2.2 Objective 2: Demonstration of the Dynamic Interaction between the 171

Distal and Proximal Factors of Site Water Pollution

8.2.3 Objective 3: Development of Conceptual Frameworks to Manage Site Water 172

Pollution at the Planning and Operational Level by Integrating Construction

Planning with Water Pollution Prevention Approaches and Cleaner Production

with Lean Production Concept

8.2.4 Objective 4: Development of an Industry Enhanced Integration of 172


Water Pollution Preventive Practices (WP3) with Construction

Plan

8.2.5 Objective 5: Development of a Clean-Lean Approach to Manage 173

Distal Factors of Site Water Pollution

8.2.6 Objective 6: Development of a Clean-Lean Approach to Manage 174

Proximal Factors of Site Water Pollution

8.3 Value and Significant of the Research 175

8.3.1 Theoretical contribution of the study 176

8.3.2 Practicality of the study 178

8.3.3 Usability of the study 179

8.3.4 Reliability and Validity of the study 180

8.4 Research Limitations 181

8.5 Recommendations for Future Research 182

8.6 Summary 184

8.7 References 184

APPENDICES 186
CHAPTER 1

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background

Construction is an important industry that contributes to the wellbeing of a nation by being the enabler for

the economic and social growth. In New Zealand itself, construction constitutes as the third largest industry

by the number of businesses and the ability to provide high level employment to the people (Statistics New

Zealand, 2009). However, the importance of construction has been undermined with the negative impact it

has on the environment. The undesirable impact of construction on the environment has become a major

concern that needs to be addressed. Numerous studies have been conducted to identify the environmental

impacts associated with construction (Shen and Tam, 2002; Cardoso, 2005; Fernandez-Sanchez and

Rodriguez-Lopez, 2010; Chen et al., 2010; Li et al., 2010; Cole, 2010; Gangolells et al., 2009). The

environmental impacts could consist of air and water pollution, waste disposal, land contamination,

depletion of natural resources, social problems (noise, vibration, odour and transportation) and safety

issues.

In the field of construction, studies have been done to reduce the impacts of energy/ carbon dioxide

emission and construction demolition waste (Da Paz et al., 2014; Prez-Martnez et al., 2014; Fernndez

2007; Ozcan-Deniz and Zhu, 2012; Melanta et al., 2013; and Ahn et al. 2013). Limited study has been done

on construction site water pollution from the perspective of construction management or construction

planning in specific. Water pollution poses a significant threat to the environment but has been side-lined

in comparison to other environmental concerns. Water pollution caused by construction may involve

different pollutants such as sediment, paint, solvents, cleaners, diesel, oil and other harmful chemicals.

Sediment is considered the most significant pollutant as the magnitude and damage from sediment

produced during construction is massive. Major sediment production occurs during the early stages of

construction, which are the land clearing and site preparation stage (Ab Rahman et al., 2010). This stage

puts a lot of stress onto the site with high risk of erosion and sediment production due to vegetation removal

and disturbed soil. Changes in the land form during construction disrupts the natural hydrologic cycle of the

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site. Sediment is a result of the disruption which follows from the uncontrolled processes of excessive runoff

and erosion. The mechanism of those processes starts with excessive runoff production where impervious

surfaces such as exposed earth could not infiltrate rain water. The larger the area cleared, the higher the

volume of runoff produced. Increase in runoff volume may erode the surface of soil which are not stabilized.

This erosion process will then detach soil from the land surface as sediment. At last, the domino effect will

end at streams causing non-point source pollution. Subsequent effect and complications due to those

processes are flooding, clogging of current drainage system, reduction of groundwater recharge and

rampage of natural aquatic (New Hamsphire Department of Environmental Services et al., 2008). Public

health will also be at stake besides the need to allocate additional cost and resources for remedial actions

for the damage (Harbor, 1999).

In the U.S., erosion rate from construction could be anything from 20 to 200 tons per acre per year

(Burton and Pitt, 2002). It accounts for 10% of the U.S. sediment load to water bodies even though

construction only occupies 0.007% of the entire land. U.S. EPA (2005) reported that sediment runoff from

construction sites are 10 to 20 times higher than agricultural land and 1000 to 2000 times greater than

forest land. The severity is enormous, judging from the area covered. In Auckland, New Zealand, the

Auckland Regional Council (1999) reported that hundreds of hectares of land are being cleared each year

for the purpose of developing residential construction, road and landfill. Without proper protection initiatives,

the resultant will be accelerated on-site erosion and sediment production. Studies that have been conducted

in Auckland claimed that construction sites yield 10 to 100 times more sediment than pastoral land. From

1996-1997, 1000 ha of bare land has been worked around the Auckland region. If left unprotected, it could

result in discharge up to 66, 000 tons of sediment/year to aquatic receiving environment. Destructive impact

of sediment is seen when Auckland experienced the loss of shellfish in estuaries. In another case, major

sediment discharge has wiped out the trout population in a stream. Eventually, it took almost 4 years for

the reestablishment of trout in the stream (North Shore City Council, 2010). Hence, the management of

excessive runoff, erosion and sediment from construction sites are crucial as it has a major impact on the

environment.

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1.2 Research Motivation

The runoff and erosion sediment processes at construction sites have commonly been controlled using

mitigation techniques. In addition, runoff and erosion sediment are two interrelated processes but have

been recognized as separate entities where in comparison, storm water runoff is often being neglected as

it is not recognized as a pollutant and does not have a well-defined source like sediment (Parikh et al.,

2005). The control approaches for runoff and erosion sediment are also implemented independently even

though there are huge interrelations between them. The interdependency is apparent from the chain of

reaction where it begins with runoff production that acts as the eroding agent causing erosion which brings

along soil that appears to be sediment. Therefore, the control of runoff may subsequently reduce erosion

and sediment (Auckland Regional Council, 1999). However, as the concern on environment rose, many

local guidelines were adopted to address the problems in specific. The specialisation causes broken linkage

between runoff management and erosion control, of what supposed to be jointly managed (Kaufman, 2000).

In practice, storm water and erosion control practices are designed by different people, who will then submit

the design to different agencies through different approval process. The pathways suggest fragmentation

between the two systems (Brown and Caraco, 1997). The linkage between runoff and erosion control is

also apparent from runoff and erosion guidelines that adopt similar preventive approaches but given in

separate guides. Unfortunately, minimal guidance is given on the way to combine those approaches

together, leaving contractor in dark. Due to the similarities and interrelationships, it is suggested that runoff

and erosion control be joint and implemented together as a system instead of focusing on addressing the

problems independently.

Runoff is commonly controlled by removing it as fast as possible from the site by using contour

drains (Auckland Regional Council, 1999). However, the effect of the removal on its surroundings is given

less thought. Similarly, erosion and sediment at site are commonly controlled using end-of-pipe systems,

also known as Best Management Practices (BMP) for erosion and sediment control. Erosion control can

be defined as an approach to control natural processes (weathering, dissolution and transportation) by

which soil is detached from grounds surface. Whereas sediment control is applied to reduce the amount

of eroded soil transported off site (Rogers et al., 2006). Erosion control techniques may include, but not

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limited to check dams, contour drain, surface roughening, hydro seeding, mulching and others. Some

literature may include re-vegetation, minimisation of earthwork, timing and staging of operations as part of

erosion control techniques (Auckland Regional Council, 1999). Sediment control techniques may include,

but not limited to retention pond, silt fence, dewatering, flocculation and others (NZ Transport Agency,

2010). Typically, the techniques listed under erosion and sediment control may vary across different

agencies, councils, states or countries. Therefore, it is essential for contractors undertaking construction

projects to be familiar with the local erosion and sediment control requirements.

Even with the facilities available, the concept is still mitigating the already occurred source of

pollution, rather than preventing the source from occurring. The term prevention and mitigation in the

context of environmental impact is crucial because the former plays a huge role in reducing the occurrence

of negative impact to the environment. Mitigation approaches are commonly structural based while

preventive approaches are considered as non-structural based. Well-constructed mitigation facilities with

proper implemented maintenance can be effective in managing the runoff, erosion and sediment issue to a

certain extent. Being merely a control system and reactive in nature, those measures do require additional

cost with land areas for the system to be built. The concern does not only stem from the economic point of

view but also the social and environmental aspect as the approaches are unable to guarantee the quality

of water flowed into the natural water ways. In a conventional type of construction (design-bid-build), the

conception for both mitigation and preventive approaches usually occurs during the planning and design

stage of the project. Mitigation approaches are commonly planned and designed by consultants whilst

contractors are responsible in building the proposed facilities and maintain it throughout the construction

period. In general, this represents a deficiency in construction knowledge management as it encourages

non-participation from contractors at early stages of a project. The construction team relies entirely on the

defense mechanism (mitigation) without being proactive about the issue. The notion of attacking the source

of the problem was entirely up to consultants expertise without realizing the fact that participation by

contractors may reduce the dependencies on the defense mechanism.

Prevention is defined as to stop an adverse impact from happening while mitigation is to make an

impact less serious. Northcutt (2000) has reported that it is best to prevent erosion rather than taking action

4
with sediment control measures. The concept of prevention is one of the essential elements in

environmental management system. Even in runoff, erosion and sediment, the concept of prevention has

been established but received less attention by practitioners as well as academician. Most erosion and

sediment control techniques are structural based that tend to mitigate the problem instead of preventing,

except for some of the non-structural based erosion control approaches. The drawbacks of structural based

system such as higher requirement in cost, reduction in usable site areas, changes to natural site hydrology

and inflexible site design enhances the importance and significances of the non-structural approaches. The

non-structural approach can be applied without the hefty requirements usually acquired by structural based

system.

The proactive measure of prevention is essential as certain practices during conventional

construction are inducing runoff, erosion and sediment. For example, soil compaction by unnecessary

movement of heavy vehicles causes reduced rate of runoff infiltration as well as the cause of death among

matured tress due to low intake of Oxygen. Besides that, the common method of clearing a site at one-go

creates huge area of impervious surfaces that lead to high volume and rate of runoff. If those damaging

practices were observed and realized by contractors, different approaches or methods can be taken to

reduce or prevent the occurrence of runoff and its subsequent problems. Hence, preventive measures

aimed for during construction should be introduced at the construction planning as well as the operational

level.

1.3 Research Problems

Common site water pollution management approaches are segregated from the production aspect in

construction as the design and installation of control facilities have nothing in common with construction

planning (Ahn et al., 2010). The management of site water pollution is to address the occurrence of the end

result, which is sediment, without further thoughts given to relate it with the production aspects such as time

and cost. This has placed environmental management practices as a standalone effort, which creates

segregation between the production and environmental values. A segregated notion often causes one

factor being emphasized more than the other. Besides that, the isolated effort do come with additional cost,

time and resource to manage those aspects separately.

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1.4 Research Aim and Objectives

This study aims to develop a holistic approach to manage construction site water pollution by integrating

production and environmental factors using the basis of prevention. The objectives of this study are given

as follows:

1. To identify and categorize the causes of site water pollution into distal and proximal factors.

2. To demonstrate the dynamic interaction between the distal and proximal factors of site water

pollution.

3. To develop conceptual frameworks to manage site water pollution at the planning and operational

level by integrating construction planning with water pollution prevention approaches and cleaner

production with lean production concept.

4. To develop an industry enhanced integration of water pollution preventive practices (WP3) with

construction planning elements framework.

5. To develop a clean-lean approach to manage distal factors of site water pollution.

6. To develop a clean-lean approach to manage proximal factors of site water pollution.

1.5 Research Scope

This study involves data collection that consist of interviews and case studies. Interviews have been

conducted among construction experts from the local authority, consultant and constructing organizations.

All interviews have been conducted in Auckland, New Zealand. The study has also been conducted using

two case studies which involve also interview, observation and archival documents, where both cases are

located in the state of Pahang, Malaysia. Details of the interviews and case studies will be discussed further

in the respective chapters.

1.6 Research Methodology

The research methodology for this study is discussed in general in Section 1.6.1., while detailed discussion

on the selection of each research method and its respective analysis will be detailed in the respective

chapters.

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1.6.1 Research Method

Table 1.1 shows the essential phases and stages involved in this study, with the inclusion of objectives and

research methods. This study involves two major work phases, which are problem formulation (Chapter 2

and 3) and proposed solution (Chapter 4 to 7).

Table 1.1 Research Method

Work Phases Chapter and Objectives Research Data


Stages Method Analysis
Introduction Chapter 1 To introduce the problem, aim, Literature review Content
objectives and methods of the study. Analysis
Chapter Stage To identify the potential causes of In-depth
2 1 construction site water pollution interview
Stage Systematic
2 review
Stage To categorize the causes of Literature review
PROBLEM FORMULATION

3 construction site water pollution into


distal and proximal factors.
Chapter Stage To develop CLD that demonstrates the In-depth
3 1 interaction between proximal and distal interview
Phase 1

factors in regards to construction site Systematic


water pollution. review
*Results taken
from previous
chapter.
Stage To verify the use of CLD in portraying Case study
2 the dynamic relationship between the Interview
distal and proximal factors against Archival
construction site water pollution. records
Document
review
Chapter Stage To develop a theoretical based Integrative Inductive
4 1 integrated framework that combines literature review Content
water pollution preventive practices Analysis
(WP3) with construction planning
elements
Stage To develop a conceptual integration
2 between the concepts of lean
PROPOSED SOLUTION

PROPOSED SOLUTION

production and cleaner production.


Chapter Stage To develop an industry enhanced CP- Semi-structured Deductive
5 1 P2 based water pollution preventive Interview Content
Phase 2

Phase 2

practices (WP3) with construction Analysis


planning elements framework.
Chapter Stage To provide a conceptual systemic view Literature Review Content
6 1 of the cause-effect relationship between Analysis
administrative process inefficiencies,
lean waste, production (time) and the
environmental sediment pollution)
variable using a system dynamic tool
called Causal Loop Diagram (CLD).
Stage To develop a modified Value Stream- Case study: Lean
2 Process Map (VS-PM) that could Performance
improve both the production and Metrics:

7
environmental variable in a construction -Governmental -Production
project. standards on (Time)
work procedure
-Site record and
documents
-Interview
-Observation
-Site record and -Environment
document. (Sediment
Pollution)
-Document from
the Dept. of
Irrigation and
Drainage (DID)
Malaysia.
Stage To integrate the use of CLD as an Case study: Data from
3 enhancement tool to the VS-PM. CLD
-Interview
-Observation
Chapter Stage To develop and model the use of clean- Case study Production
7 1 lean method for earthwork operation in Interview and
order to reduce the risk of site sediment Observation environmental
pollution and accordingly, to improve Site performance
production performance. document indicators
analysis
Conclusion and Chapter 8 To conclude the study and to provide
Recommendation recommendation for future research
works.

The above research methodology is further derived into detailed work flow in accordance to the two major

phases of this doctoral study. Table 1.2 provides the detailed research methods involved for phase 1 while

Table 1.3 provides the detailed research methods for Phase 2.

8
Table 1.2 Phase 1 (Problem Formulation)

CHAPTER AND
PROCESS FLOWCHART OUTCOME
STAGES
(Industry Input) In-depth interview

20 experts
STAGE 1

Sampling
Environmental Purposive sampling
Selection criterion: Causes of
consultant, local authority construction
1) Experienced in site water pollution
and contractor 2) Min 5 years experience site water
Based in New Zealand pollution

Systematic Review
CHAPTER 2

(Theoretical
STAGE 2

Input)

What causes water Scopus


53 articles Input
pollution in construction? database &
Journals

Literature Review
Distal &
Causal theories
STAGE 3

proximal
Constraint response factors of
model by Suraji et.al. site water
pollution
(2001)

CLD Development

10 distal and 7 proximal factors


STAGE 1

In depth interview (20 experts): Interactive


questioning on the causes of water pollution
Systematic reviews (53 articles)
Validation

Dynamic
CHAPTER 3

Case Study interaction


Data Collection between
Interview: factors of
Selected based on availability - Project engineer, construction
Case study that encountered assistant site water
delay during site clearance of engineer, site pollution
STAGE 2

earthwork supervisor and


6 proximal, 4 distal administrator
Archival record
- site diary
Site document

9
Table 1.3 Phase 2 (Proposed Solution)

CHAPTER AND
PROCESS FLOWCHART OUTCOME
STAGES

Integrative literature review Data sources

Water pollution Storm water runoff, erosion Conceptual


prevention approaches & sediment guideline & framework
standard on the
Construction planning
elements Construction planning integration
STAGE 1

articles between
construction
planning and
Inductive content analysis water
pollution
Open coding
Categorization
Abstraction
CHAPTER 4

Integrative literature review Data sources

Fundamentals of: Journal


Lean production Conference / Proceeding
Guidelines / Clean
Cleaner production lean
Standardization
STAGE 2

approach

Inductive content analysis

Validation Chapter

Validation
Open loading

6 and 7
Categorization
Abstraction

Semi structured interview Sampling

20 experts Purposive sampling


Environment consultant, Local Criterion:
Authority, contractors 1) Expertise in site water
New Zealand (audio recorded) pollution WP3
CHAPTER 5

2) Min 5 years experience Construction


STAGE 1

Planning
framework

Deductive content
analysis

Retest framework
Quantitative
description data

10
Literature review
Dynamism
Administrative process between
inefficiencies administrative
STAGE 1
Content Causal
Lean waste loop process
analysis inefficiencies,
Site sediment pollution diagram
lean waste,
Lean administration
and
environment

Case study Selection criterion


Delay during earthworks
Public governed project Delay due to administrative
Triple-storey district (distal) process
education office in Includes earthwork
Pahang, Malaysia
CHAPTER 6

Lean performance metrics Modified


Data collection VS-PM
Production variable (Time
STAGE 2

metrics and Process Document review (site diary,


completed metrics) meeting minutes, RFI, project
Environment variable details, & government standard)
Sediment pollution (Rainfall Interview with engineer, assistant
erosivity) engineer, site supervisor &

Validation
administration staff
Observation of process flow

Lean mapping
Modified VS-PM
Input

CLD
CLD enhanced
clean lean
STAGE 3

Root cause of waste approach for


Interview (site based personnel) administrative
Observation (process flow of admin) process (distal
factor)

Case study Sources

Commercial and light Interview (site engineer, site supervisor,


industrial unit in Raub, site agent)
Pahang, Malaysia Observation 5 cycles (cut & fill operation)
Earthwork project Site document analysis (site diary, daily no
7 months duration of trips, project drawing, claims) Clean-lean
CHAPTER 7

method for
STAGE 1

earthwork
Operation
Performance metrics (proximal
factor)
Production factor
1) Value Stream map (micro level)
2) Variability (macro level)
Environment factor
1) Site sediment pollution (Rainfall erosivity, R)

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1.6.2 Ethical Consideration

This doctoral study has been conducted following the ethics approval obtained from the University of

Auckland Human Participants Ethics Committee on 17 December 2012 with the reference number 8664.

The ethics approval was granted for a period of three years, resulting in an expiry date for this approval on

17 December 2015. The ethics approval letter for this study is included in the appendix. The participants of

this study have been provided with a Participant Information Sheet (PIS) that describes the nature of this

study as well as the process of data collection. A consent Form (CF) has also been provided to the

participants as an agreement by the participants on the terms stated in the PIS. Samples of those forms

are also given in the appendix.

1.7 Thesis Outline

This doctoral thesis is presented as a manuscript-based thesis. The chapters are arranged in sequence

and flow where each chapter includes extraction of articles that have been submitted to journal for review.

Hence, each chapter will contain extraction of the main manuscript, supported with complementary

manuscripts, which have been presented at conferences. Following the Introduction chapter, this thesis will

begin by having two chapters (Chapter 2 and 3) to properly establish the research problem. Once the

problem has been established, Chapter 4 is conducted to develop conceptual solutions to the problem. The

conceptual solutions will then be enhanced with industrial input and case data portrayed in Chapter 5, 6

and 7. This thesis will be concluded in Chapter 8. Outlines for Chapter 2 to 7 are given as follows:

Chapter 2: Causal Factors for Construction Site Water Pollution aims to establish the underlying

factors for construction site water pollution in effort to recognize the core cause of the problem, rather than

obscuring the issue only on the surface. This chapter that has been conducted using in-depth interview,

systematic review and literature review has identified and categorized causes of construction site water

pollution into distal and proximal factors, which provides a perspective where the issue could root from

outset factors and not only the commonly acknowledged onsite-based deficiencies.

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Main manuscript:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), A Cleaner Production-Pollution Prevention Based

Framework for Construction Site Induced Water Pollution. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for

Review.

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), The Dynamics of Proximal and Distal Factors in

Construction Site Water Pollution, Journal of Cleaner Production, 113, 54-65.

Chapter 3: The Dynamics of Distal and Proximal Factors of Construction Site Water Pollution aims

to utilize the functions of a system dynamics tool called Causal Loop Diagram (CLD) in recognizing

dynamics between the distal and proximal factors in construction site water pollution. Results from the

previous chapter will be portrayed in the form of CLD and those findings will also be enhanced with a case

study where a CLD for the case study will be drawn from data collected through interview, archival records

and document review. Ultimately, the dynamic interaction between those factors has been identified where

the distal factors, which are commonly ignored in construction are found to have domino effects on the

proximal factors.

Main manuscript:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), A Cleaner Production-Pollution Prevention Based

Framework for Construction Site Induced Water Pollution. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for

Review.

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), The Dynamics of Proximal and Distal Factors in

Construction Site Water Pollution, Journal of Cleaner Production, 113, 54-65.

Chapter 4: The Conception of Prevention-Based Approaches to Manage Construction Site Water

Pollution aims to develop improvement strategies for the problems established in the previous two chapters.

The proposed strategies will be a conceptual integration between the aspects of construction management

and environmental prevention approaches in order to holistically address the production and environmental

factors of construction site water pollution at the planning and operational stage of construction. The use of

integrative literature review for this chapter has resulted in two proposed integration applicable at the

13
construction planning level, which is WP3-Construction Planning Theoretical Framework and at the

operational level, Clean-Lean Integration.

Main manuscript:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), A Cleaner Production-Pollution Prevention Based

Framework for Construction Site Induced Water Pollution. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for

Review.

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), Clean-Lean Integration: A Study on Earthworks

Operation. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for Review.

Supporting manuscript:

Belayutham, S. and Gonzlez, V. (2013), Integrating Lean into Storm water Runoff Management: A

Theoretical Exploration, In: Formoso, C.T. and Tzortzopoulos, P., 21st Annual Conference of the

International Group for Lean Construction. Fortaleza, Brazil, 31-2 Aug 2013. pp 875-884

Chapter 5: Industry Enhanced Integration of Construction Planning with Water Pollution Prevention

Practices Framework aims to provide a theoretical-practical framework of integration between construction

planning and water pollution prevention practices. This chapter acts to verify the established conceptual

framework on the integration of WP3-Construction Planning for the planning stage in construction. This

chapter that utilizes semi-structured interview method provides an industrial perspective for the theoretically

proposed framework in Chapter 4. As a result, a Theoretical-Practical WP3-Construction Planning

Framework is established, which provides a prevention-based solution to manage production and the

environmental factor of construction site water pollution at the construction planning stage. The findings in

this chapter have also provided industry verification to the framework established in Chapter 4.

Main manuscript:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), A Cleaner Production-Pollution Prevention Based

Framework for Construction Site Induced Water Pollution. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for

Review.

14
Chapter 6: CLD Enhanced Clean-Lean Approach to Manage Administrative Processes (Distal

Factor) for Construction Site Water Pollution aims to apply the clean-lean integration to tackle the distal

factors of administrative processes towards positively improving the risk of site sediment pollution as well

as the production factor during construction. This chapter has utilized various methods of data collection

such as literature review and case study (interview, observation, site document analysis) to provide a

comprehensive perspective of the use of clean-lean method to improve the distal factor of site water

pollution with added functions of CLD. As a result, this chapter has portrayed the interrelationship between

the distal factor, lean waste, production (time) and the environmental (sediment pollution) variable. The

conceptual CLD that has depicted linkages between the aforementioned variables has been verified using

a real project data on the Variation Order (V.O.) approval process that occurred during an earthwork

operation. The V.O. approval process has been explored and further improved with the adapted use of lean

tool and concept through the development of a VS-PM. The VS-PM provides the means to improve the

production (time) and also the environmental (sediment pollution) variables. The findings in this chapter

have also provided validation for the clean-lean integration conceptualized in Chapter 4.

Main manuscript:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), Clean-Lean Administrative Processes. Journal of

Cleaner Production, Submitted for Review.

Supporting manuscript:

Belayutham, S. and Gonzalez, V. (2014). Enhancement of Pre-Construction Stage through Lean Thinking

and its Impact on Environmental Performance. Proceedings of Building a Better NZ Conference 2014.

Auckland, New Zealand, 3-5 September 2014.

Chapter 7: Clean-Lean Approach to Manage the Proximal Factor (Earthworks Operation) of

Construction Site Water Pollution aims to develop and model the use of clean-lean method for earthwork

operation in order to address the proximal factor of construction site water pollution in order to benefit both

the environmental and production factor of construction. This chapter utilized the research method of case

study which involves interview, observation and site document analysis. This chapter has developed a

15
clean-lean method to demonstrate the application of the conceptual integration between Lean Production

and Cleaner Production in Chapter 4. The integration between lean and clean has shown a great potential

to benefit both the production (time and cost) and environmental (sediment pollution) performance of an

earthwork operation. This chapter validates the clean-lean integration, as discussed conceptually in

Chapter 4.

Main manuscript:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), Clean-Lean Integration: A Study on Earthworks

Operation. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for Review.

Supporting manuscript:

Belayutham, S. and Gonzlez, V. (2015), A Lean Approach to Manage Production and Environmental

Performance of Earthwork Operation, In: Seppnen, O., Gonzlez, V.A. and Arroyo, P., 23rd Annual

Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. Perth, Australia, 29-31 Jul 2015. pp 743-752

1.8 References

Ab Rahman, N. N. N., Omar, F. M., Ab Kadir, M. O., 2010. Environmental aspects and impacts of

construction industry. In: El-Nemr, A. (Ed.) Impact, Monitoring and Management of Environmental

Pollution, Nova Science Publishers Inc, New York: USA.

Auckland Regional Council. 1999. Erosion and sediment control-guidelines for disturbing activities in the

Auckland region. Technical Publication No.90. Auckland Regional Council.

Brown, W.E. and Caraco, D.S. 1997. Muddy Water In, Muddy Water Out? A Critique of Erosion and

Sediment Control Plans. Watershed Protection Techniques 2(3):393-403

Burton, A. and Pitt, R. 2002. Storm water effects handbook: A toolbox for watershed managers, scientists

and engineers. USA: Lewis Publishers.

Cardoso, T. J. M. 2005. Construction site environmental impact in civil engineering education. European

Journal of Engineering Education, 30, 51-58.

16
Chen, Y., Okudan, G. E. and Riley, D. R. 2010. Sustainable performance criteria for construction method

selection in concrete buildings. Automation in Construction, 19, 235-244.

Cole, R. J. 2000. Building environmental assessment methods: assessing construction practices.

Construction Management and Economics, 18, 949-957.

Da Paz, D. H. F., Dos Santos Neto, F. C., Vaz Lafayette, K. P., Malafaya, F. 2014. Analysis of sustainability

indicators on the management construction sites CDW in Recife, Brazil. Electronic Journal of

Geotechnical Engineering, 19 F, 1377-1389.

Fernndez, J. E., 2007. Resource consumption of new urban construction in China. Journal of Industrial

Ecology 11, 99-115.

Fernndez-Snchez, G. and Rodrguez-Lpez, F. 2010. A methodology to identify sustainability indicators

in construction project management-Application to infrastructure projects in Spain. Ecological

Indicators, 10, 1193-1201.

Gangolells, M., Casals, M., Gass, S., Forcada, N., Roca, X. and Fuertes, A. 2009. A methodology for

predicting the severity of environmental impacts related to the construction process of residential

buildings. Building and Environment, 44, 558-571.

Harbor, J. 1999. Engineering geomorphology at the cutting edge of land disturbance: erosion and sediment

control on construction sites. Geomorphology, 31, 247-263.

Kaufman, M. M. 2000. Erosion control at construction sites: the sciencepolicy gap. Environmental

Management, 26, 89-97.

Li, X., Zhu, Y. and Zhang, Z. 2010. An LCA-based environmental impact assessment model for construction

processes. Building and Environment, 45, 766-775.

New Hampshire Department of Environmental Science, Commissions, New Hampshire Association of

Regional Planning, Planning, New Hampshire Office of Energy and, & Center, New Hampshire Local

Government. (2008). Innovative Land Use Planning Techniques E. Williams (Ed.) A Handbook for

Sustainable Development.

17
North Shore City Council. 2010. Interesting facts. Pollution Prevention [Online]. Available:

http://www2.northshorecity.govt.nz/our_environment/Pollution_prevention/Interesting_facts.htm

Northcutt, G. 2000. Designing More Contractor-Friendly Plans to Limit Erosion and Sediment Losses.

Erosion Control [Online]. Available at:

http://www.erosioncontrol.com/EC/Editorial/Designing_More_ContractorFriendly_Plans_to_Limit_E_4

937.aspx

NZ Transport Agency. 2010. Erosion and sediment control field guide for contractors. Wellington: NZ

Transport Agency.

Parikh, P., Taylor, M. A., Hoagland, T., Thurston, H. & Shuster, W. 2005. Application of market mechanisms

and incentives to reduce stormwater runoff: An integrated hydrologic, economic and legal approach.

Environmental Science & Policy, 8, 133-144.

Prez-Martnez, M., Moreno-Navarro, F., Martn-Marn, J., Ros-Losada, C., Rubio-Gmez, M. C. 2014.

Analysis of cleaner technologies based on waxes and surfactant additives in road construction. Journal

of Cleaner Production 65, 374-379.

Rogers, M., Wilfong, B., Voros, C. & Kishore, A. 2006. Construction best management practices for

Clermont County. Clermont County, Ohio: Clermont County Storm Water Management Department.

Shen, L. Y. and Tam, V. W. Y. 2002. Implementation of environmental management in the Hong Kong

construction industry. International Journal of Project Management, 20, 535-543.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 2005. Stormwater phase II final rule fact sheet series. U.S.: US

EPA

18
CHAPTER 2

CAUSAL FACTORS FOR CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER POLLUTION

This chapter has been extracted from:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), A Cleaner Production-Pollution Prevention Based

Framework for Construction Site Induced Water Pollution. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for

Review.

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), The Dynamics of Proximal and Distal Factors in

Construction Site Water Pollution, Journal of Cleaner Production, 113, 54-65.

2.1 Introduction

Major triggers of construction site water pollution usually takes place during the early stages of construction,

which are the land clearing and site preparation stage (Ab Rahman et al., 2010). The progressive change

of land surface from a natural environment setting to cleared bare land during the initial stages of

construction creates impervious surfaces that trigger the intertwined processes of excessive runoff, erosion

and sedimentation (Auckland Regional Council, 1999). Sediment is a pollutant that results from the

uncontrolled processes of excessive runoff and erosion. The mechanism starts with excessive runoff which

is generated due to impervious surfaces such as exposed earth that could not efficiently infiltrate rain water.

The increase in runoff volume easily erodes the soil surface which are not stabilized. This erosion process

will then detach soil from the land surface as sediment. At last, the domino effect will end at streams causing

non-point source pollution (Wu et al., 2012).

The aforementioned processes that trigger construction site water pollution have commonly been

spelled-out in standards and guidelines, which were established to control erosion and sediment from

construction sites (Auckland Regional Council, 1999; Department of Environmental Resources, 1999).

However, little effort has been made to recognize the underlying causes for the upsurge in those factors,

especially from the perspective of manmade errors (Yao et al., 2011). Hence, this chapter aims to establish

the underlying factors for construction site water pollution in effort to address the core cause of the problem,

19
rather than obscuring the issue only on the surface. The objectives of this chapter are twofold: 1) to identify

the potential causes of construction site water pollution and 2) to categorize the causes of construction site

water pollution into distal and proximal factors.

2.2 Misconceptions on the causes of site water pollution

Commonly, water pollution that predominantly occurs during construction may have conveniently placed

the constructing organization as the responsible party (Houser and Pruess, 2009; Barrett et al., 1995;

Lavers and Shiers, 2000). Little thought has been given to other complementing reasons such as change

order, design error and schedule changes, which involve off-site personnel (designer and client) (Shrestha

et al., 2014). Miao et al. (2015) argued that even though polluting companies are the direct source of

pollution, they are not entirely to be blamed because their behaviors may have extended from the lack of

supervision by the local agencies. Similar justification was established by McNeill (1996), who found that

water pollution incident could also be caused by outset factors such as clients cost saving nature, besides

the onset factors by contractors. Generally, outset factors can also be described as latent factors, which

are often being ignored without realizing its criticality where actions from upstream personnel create the

situation for onset factors to be generated (Suraji et al., 2001; Haslam et al., 2005). Therefore, it is essential

to recognize not only the direct factors but also the latent factors for any event under investigation.

The recognition of latent factors in the construction industry can be observed from the

establishment of causal theories in areas such as safety, productivity and sustainability (Han et al., 2014;

Lee et al., 2004; Onat et al., 2014). Nonetheless, a Scopus search using the term causal theory in

construction found this term being used most often in the fields of construction safety and accident. Minimal

research has been observed on the subject of environment, particularly construction site water pollution.

This finding is reinforced by Fuertes et al. (2013), who stated that limited environment related research was

found portraying causal models, potentially due to the difficulty in distinguishing the relation between causal

factors and the environment.

Current disregards of the latent factors in environment related construction research defies the

growing call to implement prevention-based approaches such as Cleaner Production and Pollution

Prevention that emphasize on source reduction and minimization of environmental impacts (Hilson, 2003).

20
In a situation where the source (latent factor) itself is not being recognized, the implemented solutions are

merely controlling rather than preventing (Frondel et al., 2007). The common approach applied to control

sediment from construction sites is by the use of end-of-pipe techniques such as check dams, contour

drain, retention pond, silt fence, dewatering and flocculation (NZTA, 2010). The control facilities to mitigate

site water pollution do come with drawbacks that include high cost, reduction in usable site areas, changes

to natural site hydrology and inflexible site design (Shaver, 2000). Furthermore, the control facilities could

only mitigate the already occurred pollutant rather than to prevent the occurrence at its source. Hence,

latent factor (source) recognition would lead to the establishment of a holistic approach that supports the

notion of pollution prevention in order to reduce the risk of an environmental disaster.

2.3 Causal Theories

The construction safety and accident field has long recognized the root cause of accidents that extend

beyond the construction-based operations by including management factors within the accident causation

models (Hosseinian and Torghabeh, 2012). The accident causation models have originated from different

theories, starting from Heinrichs Dominoes Theory that focused on individual as the cause of accidents.

The theory was further updated by Bird and Loftus by including managements role in an accident

(Hosseinian and Torghabeh, 2012). In a similar note, Reason (1995) proposed that the root cause of

accidents can be traced back to latent failures and organizational errors.

In later years, Suraji et al. (2001) echoed the earlier findings that latent failures are caused by

deficient decisions by the top and line management which consequently becomes the antecedent to unsafe

acts. Due to that, Suraji et al. (2001) has proposed a constraint-response model that categorized causal

factors into two i.e. proximal and distal factors. Proximal factors are factors that directly lead to accident

whilst distal factors have indirect connection with the accident where the inappropriate actions of the distal

factors could lead to the introduction of the proximal factors. This could further increase the risk of accident,

escalate the cost and time constraint, prompting inadequate resource for the construction process. The

causal link provided by Suraji et al. (2001) enables the tracing of accident causes from the lowest level

operatives to the upstream personnel including the client. The works of Suraji et al. (2001) has also been

based upon by other researchers. For example, Haslam et al. (2005) found that off-site stakeholders

21
(designer, manufacturer and supplier) who are involved at the projects concept, design and management

stage were frequently the originating influential factor for site based failures. Also based on an accident

causation model, Miao et al. (2015) has investigated the latent causal chain for industrial water pollution in

China and found institutional defect as the deeper reason for the frequent outbreak. In summary, the

construction safety and accident field has provided a reasonable theoretical foundation that could be

adapted to identify both the proximal and distal factors in environmental studies.

2.4 Research Method to Establish the Underlying Factors in Relation to Construction Site Water

Pollution

This chapter involves three work stages, as shown in Table 2.1. This is an exploratory study that aims to

establish the underlying factors for construction site water pollution through the use of qualitative methods,

similar to other researches that have utilized qualitative approaches for their exploratory study, e.g., Spillane

et al. (2011). Qualitative approach is suited to this study due to the limited research found on issues

regarding construction site water pollution, particularly on the identification of proximal and distal factors.

Two different data collection methods (in-depth interview and systematic review) have been utilized to

obtain data which are both theory and industry supported in order to establish the causes of site water

pollution. The established causes will further be categorized into distal and proximal factors by grounding

it on the accident causation model proposed by Suraji et al. (2001).

Table 2.1 Work Stages for Chapter 2

Work Stage Data Collection Data Analysis Objective


Stage 1 In-depth interview Inductive 1) To identify the potential causes of
Stage 2 Systematic review Content construction site water pollution
Stage 3 Literature review Analysis 2) To categorize the causes of construction
site water pollution into distal and proximal
factors.

2.4.1 In-depth Interview with Industry Practitioners

Work Stage 1 involves the gathering of input from industry practitioners on the causes of site water pollution

through the use of in-depth interview. In-depth interview is used to attain rich and in-depth information which

is useful when attempting to find patterns and generate models (Zhang and Wildermuth, 2009). This kind

22
of interview is commonly conducted among a small number of respondents in order to explore and gather

a holistic understanding of a particular subject (Berry, 1999; Boyce and Neale, 2006). According to

Minichiello et al. (1990), this type of interview does not require predetermined categories of question or

answer. Therefore, the causes of water pollution were not pre-defined prior to this work stage. Similarly,

Tang and Ng (2014) have conducted a study on sustainable building development with the use of input

from interviews.

For sample of respondents, the most common sampling technique, purposive sampling (Marshall,

1996) has been adopted. The specific criteria for selecting the respondents are given as follows: 1) Ranges

from different nature of work but with experience in dealing with construction site water pollution and 2)

Minimum of 5-year experience. Twenty respondents (environmental expert, local authority, constructor)

have been selected based on their expertise and experience in the field of study. Similarly, Fernie et al.

(2003) have also employed twenty respondents for their exploratory study on supply chain management in

construction. According to Bowen (2005), interviews do not entail high number of respondents as it is

evaluated based on comprehensiveness of the acquired information. Hence, this study intent to have a

comprehensive data rather than high quantity but on the surface type of data. The in-depth interview was

conducted by asking an open-ended question in relation to the causes of construction site water pollution.

Respondents were allowed to talk freely on potential reasons for construction site water pollution. Each of

the audio recorded interview sessions took approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Table 2.2 provides brief information of the respondents, categorized based on their work nature: 1)

legislator (L); 2) environmental specialist (ES) and 3) constructor (C).

Table 2.2 Respondents Nature of Work

Respondent Profession Average years of Expertise


experience
L1-L3 Technical specialist 11 Storm water management in the
local council
ES1-ES11 Civil engineer 15 Environmental consultant

C1-C6 Project manager 18 Construction project management


Category of specialization:
Legislator (L): 3; Environmental specialist (ES): 11; Constructors (C): 6

23
2.4.2 Systematic Review (SR)

A systematic review has been conducted to identify the causes of construction site water pollution from the

theoretical aspect. Previous studies have been done to identify the causes of construction site water

pollution but those findings are rather limited due to the convention method of collecting the data.

Systematic review is defined as a literature review that is designed to locate, appraise and synthesize the

best available evidence relating to a specific research question to provide informative and evidence-based

answers (Metzler et al., 2013). Systematic review has been employed to ascertain limited bias in the search

(Petticrew and Roberts, 2006). The method could also provide an overall picture of the subject area,

subsequently providing direction for future research works (Pettigrew and Roberts, 2006). The systematic

review has been conducted by following a well-defined and transparent steps proposed by Petticrew and

Roberts (2006), which was also adapted by Viana et al. (2012) in their study. The general process steps

were further enhanced by incorporating construction management based systematic studies by Yi and

Chan (2014) and Ke et al. (2009). The systematic review steps are discussed as follows:

Step 1: Defining the question

The research question determined for this systematic review is what causes water pollution in

construction? The attempt was to identify the core causes of construction site water pollution before

proceeding to the next work stage.

Step 2: Establishing protocol and literature search

This step started by determining relevant database, keywords and criteria for inclusion/ exclusion of

publications. In general, all searches were limited to works published from year 1994 to current

(approximately 20 years). The reason for searches to start from year 1994 was to provide a comparable

situation between the causes of water pollution with prevention approaches that will be discussed in

subsequent chapters, where most approaches were established in the early 90s. Similar to Stechemesser

and Guenther (2012), only English language articles were included to avoid language bias. Searches were

done via two medium i.e. search engine and specific journals. As suggested by Yi and Chan (2014), the

commonly used Scopus was the choice of search engine. For the Scopus search, there were no limitations

24
imposed on the type of publication. Due to the large scope of water pollution as a subject, a more specific

search term was used to limit the findings. The search was conducted under the title/abstract/keyword

field. The keywords used are: "water pollution" from construction project; "storm water runoff" and

construction; "stormwater runoff" and construction; "soil erosion" and construction; "erosion and

sedimentation" and construction; "erosion and sediment" and construction; causes of soil erosion during

construction; sedimentation and construction project; sediment and "construction process". Those

keywords were restricted to the subject area of environmental science and engineering. To widen the

search, two additional keywords were used: "water pollution" and construction activities"; "water pollution

and construction processes that include all subject areas.

For specific journal search, high ranked journals in Construction Engineering and Management, as

proposed by Wing (1997) and Brochner and Bjork (2008) were utilized. Besides that, top journal related to

cleaner production was also sourced. Hence, the finalized list of journals are given as follows: 1) Journal of

Construction Engineering and Management; 2) Journal of Management in Engineering; 3) Construction

Management and Economics; 4) Automation in Construction; 5) Engineering, Construction and

Architectural Management; 6) Building Research and Information; 7) Building and Environment; 8) Journal

of Cleaner Production. The search terms used for all aforementioned journals except for the Journal of

Cleaner Production are as follows: "water pollution"; "storm water runoff"; "stormwater runoff"; "soil erosion";

"erosion and sedimentation"; erosion and sediment; causes of soil erosion during construction;

sedimentation sediment; "water pollution" and "construction activities"; "water pollution" and "construction

processes". Since Journal of Cleaner Production was not a built environment based journal, a more

restrictive search term was used, similar to the search conducted for Scopus, so that results will be

constrained within the domain of construction/ built environment. For journal search, the terms were

searched anywhere in the paper with no limitation to neither title nor abstract. All findings from Scopus and

journals were then cross checked to eliminate redundancies. After elimination, the search result totaled to

1929 articles.

25
Step 3: Screening

The papers were then screened through to find its relevance with the question defined in Step 1. The

inclusion criterion here involves only water pollution that originates from construction site. After screening,

articles that found to be in compliance with the research question were narrowed down to 46 from Scopus

and 74 from journals, which totaled to 120. After reviewing the 120 papers, further elimination was

conducted as contents of some papers were found to be irrelevant to the pre-defined question and the final

articles summed to 53.

Step 4: Data extraction, synthesis

Contents of the 53 papers were then extracted, organized and displayed in graphical/ tabulated form where

conclusion is drawn by identifying the core causes of construction site induced water pollution.

2.4.3 Content Analysis

Content analysis is a method used to analyze written, verbal or visual communication messages (Cole,

1988). In this chapter, inductive content analysis has been adapted to attain a condensed and broad

description on the area of study that will result in categories that best describe the subject area (Elo and

Kyngas, 2008). In this case, potential proximal and distal factors that increase the risk of construction site

water pollution. Steps suggested by Elo and Kyngas (2008) have been adapted for the analysis: 1) Open

coding: Literature were sourced and read through to identify the key terms and headings; 2) Create

category: From the key terms, category is being created to provide a better understanding of the subject

and 3) Abstraction: The categories were further derived with the establishment of sub and main categories.

2.5 Result and Analysis for the Causes of Construction Site Water Pollution

Factors that influence site water pollution has been created using the data gathered from in-depth interview

and systematic review where the factors will further be categorized as either distal or proximal. This study

will use the definition of proximal and distal factors established by Suraji et al. (2001). In short, proximal

factors are the direct cause of water pollution incidents while distal factors function to form the proximal

factors, consequently recognized as the indirect cause of water pollution. Further description on these

factors can be referred to in Section 2.3.

26
2.5.1 In-Depth Interview Result

Data from the in-depth interviews are summarized and shown in Table 2.3. The data was extracted by

following the steps proposed by Elo and Kyngas (2008), after it was transcribed from the initial audio

recordings. The table is arranged based on the construction site water pollution factors given by each

respondent. In reference to the definition of proximal and distal factors provided by Suraji et al. (2001), the

proximal factors of construction site water pollution are represented by variables 1 to 7 while the distal

factors are variables 8 to 17.

27
2.5.2 Systematic Review Result

Findings from the interview are further enhanced with the theoretical perspective by the use of

systematic review. The 53 selected articles have been read through and subsequently being placed

into several categories using similar content analysis steps employed for the interview. The identified

causes were tabulated according to the categories and arranged in the order of most cited to least cited

(Table 2.4 refers). From Table 2.4, it is apparent that erosion is the most common cause of water

pollution in construction. However, erosion does not stand alone because it is an intermediate process

that has dynamic interaction with its enabler (runoff) and resultant (sediment). The top five core causes

sums up the entire mechanism involved in increasing the risk of construction site water pollution. The

dynamic relationship among these causes are shown below:

1. Cleared land + 2. Rainfall = 3. Runoff 4. Erosion 5. Sediment

The quest to fulfil numerous development objectives necessitates the establishment of

construction projects, which commonly kicks off with site clearance activity. The removal of trees and

shrubs causes soil to be disturbed and exposed to transporting agent (rainfall) which could result in

excessive runoff, erosion and sediment (Belayutham and Gonzalez, 2013).

Findings from the systematic review differ slightly from the interview as the theory emphasized

heavily on the immediate causes of water pollution i.e., erosion, cleared site, runoff, sediment and

precipitation processes. Little emphasis was given on factors that involve human or man-made

inefficiencies. This outcome strengthens the exploratory nature and the initial reason for this chapter to

be conducted as there is a clear gap of knowledge where human initiated errors were less recognized

in the literature. Nonetheless, the factors found on man-made errors (factors 6 to 12) are similar with

findings from the interview and can be classified into distal or proximal. The proximal factors involve

factor no. 6, 9, 10 and 11 while distal factors involve factor no. 7, 8 and 12. Due to the similarities of the

factors with the interview data, both sources could be collated to provide a complementary mix of theory

and industry input that provides a complete perspective on the causes of construction site water

pollution.

28
Table 2.3 Factors that Influence the Occurrence of Site Water Pollution (Interview Data)

No. Variables Associated components ES ES ES ES ES ES ES ES ES ES ES L1 L2 L3 C1 C2 C3 C4 C5 C6


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11

1 Control facilities Allocation

Insufficient; ineffective

2 Enforcement By local agencies; Act

3 Malpractice Contractors work sequence

Ill practices

4 Cleared site Impervious surfaces

5 Work progress Progress at site

6 Time delay Waiting time, delay

7 Rain Rain occurrence

8 Design error Design constraint

Deficient knowledge;
constructability issue
9 Funding Clients budget

10 Land area Limited area for control facilities

11 Traditional Design-bid-build
procurement
12 Fragmentation Design and construction stage

13 Miscommunication Delay in receiving and sending


information
14 Planning Project planning by client
effectiveness
15 Unforeseen situation Utilities; ground condition

Compromised pre-designed
devices
16 Time constraint Limited time available

17 Wet season Winter; monsoon; rainy season

29
Table 2.4 Core Causes of Construction Site Water Pollution (Systematic Review Data)

No. Identified Causes Search Engine (Scopus) Specific Journals Total


Authors No. Authors No. Cited
1 Erosion Al-Ani et al. (2009); Ab Rahman et al. (2010); Faucette et al. (2009); Arulmozhi 22 Yates (2014); Apipattanavis et al. (2010); 9 31
et al. (2015); Ismail & Yee (2012); Ren et al. (2013); Chen et al. (2007); Basri et Veal (1999); Gangolells et al. (2009);
al. (2009); McNeill (1996); Dong et al. (2012); Beighley et al. (2010); Toy et al. Gangolells et al. (2011); Yao et al. (2011);
(1999); Wilson & Sheshukov (2006); Kaufman (2000); Wu et al. (2012); Jia et Fuertes et al. (2013); Ding & Forsythe (2013);
al. (2013); Aird (2012); Trenouth et al. (2013); Belayutham & Gonzalez (2013); Marzouk et al. (2008)
Pudasaini et al. (2004); Cerda (2007); Maniquiz et al. (2009);
2 Cleared site, earthwork, work near water Al-Ani et al. (2009); Ab Rahman et al. (2010); Goodemote (2005); Arulmozhi et 18 Yates (2014); Gangolells et al. (2009); Tsai & 11 29
body al. (2015); Ismail & Yee (2012); Ren et al. (2013); Basri et al. (2009); McNeill Chang (2012); Gangolells et al. (2011);
(1996); Kaufman (2000); Wu et al. (2012); Jia et al. (2013); Trenouth et al. Cheung et al. (2004); Tam et al. (2004);
(2013); Belayutham & Gonzalez (2013); Davis et al. (2003); Pudasaini et al. Fuertes et al. (2013); Ding & Forsythe (2013);
(2004); Cerda (2007); Houser & Pruess (2009); Maniquiz et al. (2009); Cole (2000); Gangolells et al. (2009); Fuertes
et al. (2013);
3 Storm water, runoff Al-Ani et al. (2009); Eisakhani et al. (2011); Faucette et al. (2009); Ismail & Yee 15 Cleveland & Fashokun (2006); Yates (2014); 9 26
(2012); McNeill (1996); Dong et al. (2012); Beighley et al. (2010); Toy et al. Veal (1999); Yao et al. (2011);Glass &
(1999); Kaufman (2000); Jia et al. (2013); Belayutham & Gonzalez (2013); Simmonds (2007); White (2004); Dharmappa
Davis et al. (2003); Cerda (2007); Houser & Pruess (2009); Maniquiz et al. et al. (2000); Ding & Forsythe (2013); Cole
(2009); (2000);
4 Sediment Al-Ani et al. (2009); Zhang & Wang (2010); Ismail & Yee (2012); Beighley et al. 16 Cleveland & Fashokun (2006); Akay et al. 6 22
(2010); Toy et al. (1999); Wilson & Sheshukov (2006); Kaufman (2000); (2008); Ding & Forsythe (2013); Cole (2000);
Figueiredo Gallardo & Sanchez (2004); Jia et al. (2013); Aird (2012); Trenouth Lavers & Shiers (2000); Marzouk et al. (2008)
et al. (2013); Belayutham & Gonzalez (2013); Weese (2007); Houser & Pruess
(2009); Maniquiz et al. (2009); Barrett et al. (1995)
5 Natural factors (rain, geography, geology, Ab Rahman et al. (2010); Goodemote (2005); Ismail & Yee (2012); Ren et al. 13 Chen et al. (2005); Apipattanavis et al. 5 18
soil, topography) (2013); Chen et al. (2007); Dong et al. (2012); Toy et al. (1999); Wu et al. (2010); Akay et al. (2008); Ding & Forsythe
(2012); Jia et al. (2013); Belayutham & Gonzalez (2013); Pudasaini et al. (2013); Cole (2000);
(2004); Cerda (2007); Maniquiz et al. (2009);
6 Control facilities insufficient, not available, Goodemote (2005); Faucette et al. (2009); Basri et al. (2009); McNeill (1996); 9 Shen et al. (2010);Shen et al. (2005); 2 11
maintenance issue Wu et al. (2012); Weese (2007); Pudasaini et al. (2004); Houser & Pruess
(2009); Barrett et al. (1995)
7 Designers issue (Improper documentation, McNeill (1996); Weese (2007); Barrett et al. (1995) 5 Millet (1999); 1 6
Fail to cooperate, Site agent did not
enforce, Knowledge deficient, design fault)
8 Unfavourable season (winter, rainy) either Ab Rahman et al. (2010); Goodemote (2005); Maniquiz et al. (2009); 3 Apipattanavis et al. (2010); Cole (2000); 2 5
being planned or pushed.
9 Contractors process error, negligence, ill 0 Millet (1999); Shen et al. (2005); Dharmappa 5 5
practices. et al. (2000); Lavers & Shiers (2000); Yao et
al. (2011);
10 Waiting time and delay during grading and Al-Ani et al. (2009); Goodemote (2005); Davis et al. (2003); 3 Chen et al. (2005); 1 4
development, schedule change.
11 Compaction Davis et al. (2003); 1 Fuertes et al. (2013); 1 2
12 Clients issue (limited land area, lack of McNeill (1996) 1 Chen et al. (2005); 1 2
budget)

30
2.5.3 Collated Interview and Systematic Review Results into Distal and Proximal Factors of

Construction Site Water Pollution

Data from the interview and systematic review has been grouped and collated into 17 main variables that

could potentially cause construction site water pollution, given in the following. From the 17 variables, 7

proximal (P) and 10 distal (D) factors have been identified. The proximal factors consist of: 1) Control

facilities; 2) Enforcement; 3) Malpractice; 4) Work progress; 5) Cleared site; 6) Time delay; and 7) Rain.

The distal factors consist of: 1) Design error; 2) Funding; 3) Land area; 4) Traditional procurement; 5)

Fragmentation; 6) Miscommunication; 7) Project planning effectiveness; 8) Unforeseen situation; 9) Time

constraint; and 10) Wet season.

2.6 Conclusion

The identification and categorization of construction site water pollution into distal and proximal factors

provides a perspective where the issue could root from outset factors and not only due to construction-

based deficiencies. The acknowledgement of the distal factor besides the proximal factor is important to

ensure the origin of the problem. Theoretically, this chapter has filled the gap of knowledge in identifying

the distal and proximal factors that may contribute in increasing the risk of water pollution. Previously,

limited studies were found in regards to the subject of man-made inefficiencies with construction site based

water pollution. The recognition and elimination of the negative core cause (distal factors) could lead to

reduced negative effect on subsequent factors which could potentially reduce the reliance on control

facilities for water pollution. This will subsequently enhance the application of the pollution prevention

concept that could reduce the threat on sustainability in the construction industry. Nonetheless, a mere

statement or identification of the causes is insufficient as it does not provide an overall view on how those

factors could relate and affect each other with the ultimate resultant of construction site water pollution.

Hence, the next chapter will enhance the findings from this chapter by providing a systemic view to

represent the dynamic interaction between the proximal and distal factors of construction site water

pollution.

31
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CHAPTER 3

THE DYNAMICS OF DISTAL AND PROXIMAL FACTORS OF CONSTRUCTION SITE

WATER POLLUTION

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), A Cleaner Production-Pollution Prevention Based

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Construction Site Water Pollution, Journal of Cleaner Production, 113, 54-65.

3.1 Introduction

The previous chapter has established the underlying factors that cause construction site water pollution,

which consist of proximal and distal factors. The linear representation of the factors in the previous chapter

lacks dynamism and systemic view of how those factors could affect each other and ultimately the

occurrence of site water pollution. Furthermore, the linear representation disguises the relation between

factors, prompting for mistargeted solutions. In the case of this study, responsibilities for site water pollution

during construction is often placed on the shoulders of the contracting organization as they are supposed

to provide and maintain the control facilities (NZTA, 2010). Solutions for any faultiness found during

construction would be through the imposed penalties, enforcement alongside the remedial works (Kaufman,

2000; Brown and Caraco, 1997). The short-sighted solution to the problem does not expand the perspective

in recognizing the underlying factors which might have triggered the occurrence of the proximal factors.

The current solution, which is applied from a linear perspective will only control the immediate situation

without preventing and attacking the source of problem. Hence, this chapter will enhance the findings of

the previous chapter by utilizing the functions of a system dynamics tool called Causal Loop Diagram (CLD)

in recognizing dynamics between the different factors of construction site water pollution. In summary, this

chapter aims to develop a CLD that portrays causal relationship between the distal and proximal factors of

construction site water pollution. The objectives of this chapter are given as follows: 1) to develop CLD that

40
demonstrates the interaction between proximal and distal factors in regards to construction site water

pollution and 2) to verify the use of CLD in portraying the dynamic relationship between the distal and

proximal factors against construction site water pollution.

3.2 Causal Network

Causal network is used to demonstrate the causal relationship between elements and has been applied in

different construction areas such as safety, quality and environment (Spillane et al., 2011; Love et al., 1999;

Yuan et al., 2014). In terms of finding the causal link for environmental issues, Environmental Impact

Assessment (EIA) has commonly employed causal network with system analysis such as digraphs, cause

and effect diagram, flow diagram and tree diagram (Perdicolis and Glasson, 2006). Causal network has

been used to identify or predict the impacts of cumulative, direct and indirect factors on the environment.

Environmental effects resulting from those factors can be significant and should be taken into consideration

during decision making processes (Walker and Johnson, 1999). The advantage of using causal network

and system analysis is the explicit multiple representations of impacts from a project, especially for indirect

factors which are difficult to be shown using simpler form of analysis (Walker and Johnson, 1999).

Even though current studies have shown some good understanding on the extent and pattern of

environmental impacts in the construction industry, research regarding the identification of causal factors

from construction sites remain simplistic and incomplete (Fuertes et al., 2013). Therefore, other causal

networks beyond EIA, such as data mining (Fuzzy Neural and Bayesian) and System Dynamics are being

pursued (Perdicolis and Glasson, 2006). Causal network such as system dynamics could overcome the

common concern on linearity in previous versions of the network. The concern on linear representation is

the tendency to ignore the circular chain of cause and effect (Kirkwood, 1998). L and Law (2009) added

that it is very difficult to visualize non-linear effect and feedback interactions within a complex system such

as construction. This situation may create misunderstanding on the actual effect from any implemented

strategy or decision (Yuan et al., 2014). Therefore, a non-linear causal network system is preferred for an

effective representation of the proximal and distal factors in the study of construction site water pollution.

41
3.2.1 Causal Loop Diagram (CLD)

Systemic thinking is one of the most common non-linear causal networks that apply System Dynamics.

System models consist of quantitative (System Dynamics) and qualitative (Causal Loop Diagram) models

(Laurenti et al., 2014). Causal Loop Diagram (CLD) or sometimes being referred to as Influence Diagram

is the qualitative model established prior to running a simulation that results in a quantitative model called

System Dynamics (Coyle, 1999). In general, CLD allows the illustration of cause-effect variables beyond

the common linear interrelationship. CLD involves three main components i.e., 1) causal links between

variables; 2) polarities between the links and 3) feedback loops (Love et al., 1999). The set of variables are

connected using arrows that denote causal influence by pointing from independent to dependent variable.

Each arrow is assigned its polarity, either positive (+) or negative (-), depending on how the dependent

variable changes when the independent variable changes by assuming other variables are constant

(Fernald et al., 2012). CLD consist of two different feedback loops, which are Reinforcing (R) and Balancing

(B) loop. An (R) loop reinforces change with even more change that leads to exponential growth while a

(B) loop seeks to achieve a goal (Love et al., 1999).

CLD has been used in different sectors. For instance, L and Law (2009) developed a CLD to

transfer experiences between designer and operatives while Park et al. (2010) utilized CLD to investigate

the impact of government measures on Koreas housing market. CLD has also been widely used in issues

concerning sustainability. In this regard, Koca and Sverdup (2012) have used CLD and system analysis to

explore alternative climate change strategies in Turkey. He and Liu (2010) proposed a collaborative

conceptual modelling approach that uses CLD to model potential environmental impacts. In essence, CLD

aids in visualizing how the interrelated variables affect each other (Yuan et al., 2014). Given the benefits of

CLD, it is rather dismaying to find limited studies being done on CLD that involves pollution from

construction. The industry is in dire need to have an approach that could identify the causes of pollution

holistically and this study intents to fill the aforementioned gap in knowledge.

42
3.3 Research Method to Develop CLD for the Distal and Proximal Factors of Construction Site

Water Pollution

Currently, the use of CLD in portraying the causal relationship between factors of site water pollution is still

at a very infancy stage. The exploratory nature of the study calls for the use of qualitative approaches,

including the CLD that will be represented as a qualitative model. For this study, a qualitative model is

sufficient to achieve the aim of this chapter, which is to explore and portray the dynamism between the

distal and proximal factors of site water pollution. In order to achieve the aim, two work stages are required

where the first stage is to develop a CLD based on the data obtained in the previous chapter. Similar

approach has been observed in a study done by Mahato and Ogunlana (2011), who have created their

CLD using data from interview and literature. On the other hand, the second stage involves the development

of a CLD based on a case study. The objective of the second stage is to verify the established causes of

construction site water pollution and the use of CLD in portraying the dynamic relationship between the

distal and proximal factors. The work stages involved are given in Table 3.1.

Table 3.1 Work Stages for Chapter 3

Work Stage Data Collection Data Analysis Output


Stage 1 In-depth interview Content Objective 1:
Systematic review Analysis To develop CLD that demonstrates the
*Results taken from interaction between proximal and distal
previous chapter. factors in regards to construction site
water pollution.
Stage 2 Case study Objective 2:
Interview To verify the established causes of
Archival records construction site water pollution and the
Document review use of CLD in portraying the dynamic
relationship between the distal and
proximal factors.

The use of qualitative model (CLD) has been justified by fulfilling the requirements proposed by

Coyle and Exelby (2000), which are: 1) requirement for quantification; 2) value the quantified model could

add to the qualitative model; 3) to distinguish whether the occurrence of the effect is well known to the

industry players. The explanation for fulfillment of the requirements are given as follows: As mentioned, the

aim of this study is to portray the causal relationship between the distal and proximal factors of construction

site water pollution. At this point of study, no quantification is necessary as the aim is to explore the subject

43
area and potentially, this exploration would establish the basis for further studies. Hence, the qualitative

model is sufficient to portray the potential causes that could lead to the final effect, which is water pollution.

For this study, a quantitative model will not add value to the qualitative model because it is not the intention

of this study to measure the extent of pollution. The focus of this study is to prevent or limit the potential

occurrence by identifying the source of problem by recognizing the potential factors. As for the third

requirement, it is common knowledge in the industry where immediate causes of site water pollution is from

the interlinked processes of runoff, erosion and sediment and there is no need for quantification to prove

the relationship (Department of Environmental Resources, 1999). Similar justification was used by Laurenti

et al. (2014) who presented a Group Model Building that elicit relationships that may cause environmental

impacts through cause effect chains. They found CLD itself is adequate as a system model representation

in achieving their purpose of study.

3.3.1 Stage 1: CLD Development Using Collated Systematic Review and Interview Data

Results from the previous chapter that has adopted in-depth interview and systematic review approach is

used to develop the CLD for this work stage. As discussed in Section 2.5.3 (Chapter 2), data from the

interview and systematic review has been grouped and collated into 17 variables that consist of 10 distal

(D) and 7 proximal (P) factors. A CLD is developed for the data and given in Figure 3.1, with its description

shown in Table 3.2. In the CLD, the factors are linked to each other, consequently influencing the risk of

site water pollution. The CLD is represented with variables that are connected using arrows with its

respective polarity. The polarities were drawn based on the feedback attained from the interviews and

literature. For an example, the polarity between water pollution and control facilities is derived as follows:

Respondent ES1 stated that increase in the allocation of control facilities could reduce the occurrence of

water pollution (negative polarity) and the reduction in water pollution could reduce the requirements for

additional control facilities (positive polarity). In theory, this polarity has been supported by Goodemote

(2005). After the polarities have been established, the loops focusing on water pollution are extracted. From

the diagram, 16 water pollution related loops have been distinguished, which consist of twelve Reinforcing

(R1-R12) and four Balancing (B1-B4) loops. Further descriptions for each of the loops are given in Table

3.2, which is the derivation of Figure 3.1 with subsequent discussions in Section 3.4. In general, Table 3.2

44
shows the interaction between different variables (distal and proximal) for each loop. For example, Loop

R1 involves funding, design error and control facilities factor. Hence, under the R1 column, all sections

for the aforementioned factors are being highlighted. Similar process is undertaken for all the other loops.

The loop description also portrays how proximal factors are being initiated, through the consequence effect

of distal factors. Table 3.2 also shows a significant effect distal factors have over the proximal factors. This

is shown by the amount of associated distal factors (highlighted boxes below the dashed line) as compared

to the proximal factors (highlighted areas above the dashed line). This display of effect could not be shown

if a CLD has not been used.

3.3.2 Stage 2: Verification for the Established Causes of Site Water Pollution and the Use of CLD

Using Case Study

Stage 2 acts to verify the findings established in Stage 1. Data for this stage has been collected using case

study and presented in the form of a CLD. Similar approach was used by Love et al. (1999), who have

identified the causes of reworks using two case studies with the support of literature and displayed them

using a CLD. In this chapter, a particular project is studied in order to find possible causes that may

contribute in increasing the risk of site water pollution. The case study data also acts to verify the findings

on the causes of site water pollution from the in-depth interview and systematic review. Ultimately, results

on the causes of site water pollution is gathered through a triangulation method that consist of interview

and systematic review from Chapter 1 and case study from the current chapter. Yin (2009) has described

case study as a detailed investigation of a phenomenon in a real life setting. Basically, case studies are

suitable when new processes are to be explored as it provides rich information to understand certain

processes (Christie et al., 2000). This is well suited to the aim of this study as it allows for an in-depth

exploration of the subject, which is still at its infancy.

The case project was selected based on pragmatic considerations, namely their availability.

According to Yin (2009), there is no ideal number of case studies to be carried out while Romano (1989)

suggested that the number of cases should be left to the judgement of the individual researcher. Taking

from that, this study intends to use a case project that encountered delay during its initial construction stage

such as site clearance or earthwork. The preliminary stage of construction was particularly chosen because

45
this stage would have the most impervious surfaces, which is highly prone to excessive runoff, erosion and

sediment. Therefore, any work and time delay during that period would contribute in increasing the risk of

water pollution (Goodemote, 2005). Hence, the aim of this case study is to find causes for the delay and

subsequently displaying it using a CLD. Data for this case study have been collected through interviews

with personnel in-charge (project engineer, assistant engineer, site supervisor and administrative staff),

archival records (site diary) and site documents (variation orders).

3.3.3 CLD Model Validation

Coyle and Exelby (2000) suggested that a CLD drawn by an academic should be verified and validated by

the academician him or herself as the problem was initiated by him/ her. In an academic research, the

analyst should be adequately informed on the problem domain in order to stipulate the symptoms,

operations and details. As proposed by Sterman (2002), all models should be grounded and tested against

the widest range of data including numerical and archival information with qualitative data collected from

interviews, observation and other methods. This study has been conducted following the suggestions by

Coyle and Exelby (2000) and Sterman (2002). Authors such as Haslam et al. (2005) and Gambatese et al.

(2008) have validated their model by mapping the established categories against a set of real incident.

Yuan et al. (2014) has also used a case study to illustrate the validation and application of their proposed

model. Similar to the studies mentioned above, a case study is established in Stage 2, where the method

will be used to verify the CLD model developed in Stage 1.

3.4 CLD Model for Construction Site Water Pollution

A CLD that portrays the dynamics between the distal and proximal factors from interview and systematic

review data is drawn following the steps proposed by Kim (1992): 1) theme selection; 2) time span; 3) key

variables; and 4) level of detail. The CLD is shown in Figure 3.1. A quick comparison between the

highlighted boxes in the interview (Refer to Table 2.3 in the previous chapter, Factor 1-7) and CLD (Table

3.2, Factor 8-17) shows a shift of emphasis from proximal to the distal factors. The CLD highlights a greater

influence of the distal factors as compared to the linearly demonstrated data given in Table 2.3. The

summation of linkages between the different variables (distal (D) and proximal factors (P)) portrays the

domino effect of the distal factors when it is represented from a dynamic perspective (Table 3.2 refers). The

46
next section provides discussion on the loops and its related factors. The loops will be discussed in several

groups that contain similar factors, as given in the bolded loop boxes in Table 3.

47
Time Constraint
+

R11

R9
Project Planning
Effectiveness
+

R10
+

Unforeseen Situation

- +
R8 Malpractice
R6 Miscommunication

B3 +
+
Cleared site
R12 + Enforcement
+

B4
R7 R5

+ + B1
Time delay
-
+ - + Fragmentation
+ -
+ Work progress - + Control
- Facilities
- +
Wet season
B2 + -
Water Pollution

+
+ Design Error -
R1
R4
-

R3

Land area
Attributes:
+ +
- R2
Variable - Proximal
Funding
Variable - Distal Rain Traditional Procurement
+ -

Figure 3.1 CLD Model for Construction Site Water Pollution

48
Table 3.2 Description of the Loops

Variables Causal Associated components B1 B2 B3 B4 R1 R2 R4 R3 R6 R9 R10 R11 R12 R5 R7 R8


Factor

Water pollution - Runoff erosion - sediment


1) Control facilities P Allocation
Insufficient, ineffective
2) Enforcement P Enforcement by local agencies; Acts
3) Malpractice P Contractors process error
Ill practices at site
4) Cleared site P Impervious surfaces; exposed soil
5) Work progress P Site progression
6) Time delay P Waiting time; delay; schedule change
7) Rain P Rain occurrence
8) Design error D Design constraint; design error
Deficient knowledge, constructability issue
9) Funding D Clients budget
10) Land area D Limited land area to install control facilities
11) Traditional procurement D Adaptation of design-bid-build; open tender
12) Fragmentation D Segregation btw design and construction.
13) Miscommunication D Delay in receiving and sending information
Error in information; disagreement
14) Project planning effectiveness D Clients initial planning
15) Unforeseen situation D Utilities; pipes; ground condition
Compromised pre-designed devices
16) Time constraint D Clients time restriction
17) Wet season D Winter; monsoon; rainy season

Loop Description
Loop Causal factor
B1 P Water Pollution- Enforcement - Water Pollution
B2 P Water Pollution- Control facilities - Water Pollution
B3 P Water Pollution- Enforcement- Malpractice- Water Pollution
B4 P Water Pollution- Enforcement- Malpractice-Cleared site- Water Pollution
R1 D&P Water Pollution- Funding- Design Error - Control facilities- Water Pollution
R2 D&P Water Pollution-Funding-Land area-Design Error-Control facilities- Water Pollution
R3 D&P Water Pollution-Work progress-Time delay-Wet season-Rain- Water Pollution
R4 D&P Water Pollution- Funding-Traditional Procurement- Fragmentation-Design Error - Control facilities- Water Pollution
R5 D&P Water Pollution- Funding -Traditional-Procurement- Fragmentation-Miscommunication-Malpractice- Water Pollution
R6 D&P Water Pollution- Funding -Design Error -Unforeseen Situation-Time delay- Wet season-Rain- Water Pollution
R7 D&P Water Pollution- Funding -Traditional Procurement-Fragmentation-Miscommunication- Malpractice-Enforcement- Water Pollution
R8 D&P Water Pollution- Funding -Traditional Procurement-Fragmentation-Miscommunication-Malpractice-Cleared site- Water Pollution
R9 D&P Water Pollution- Funding -Traditional Procurement-Fragmentation-Miscommunication-Time delay-Wet season- Rain- Water Pollution
R10 D&P Water Pollution- Funding -Land area-Design Error -Unforeseen Situation-Time delay- Wet season-Rain- Water Pollution
R11 D&P Water Pollution- Funding - Traditional Procurement-Fragmentation-Project Planning Effectiveness Time constraint-Wet season-Rain-Water Pollution
R12 D&P Water Pollution- Funding - Traditional Procurement-Fragmentation-Design errorUnforeseen situation-Time delay-Wet season-Rain-Water Pollution

49
Proximal Factors

Loop B1-B4

Loop B1-B4 consists only of proximal factors that commonly occur during the construction stage. Loop B1

and B2 suggest that the balancing variables within the loop could help to control the occurrence of water

pollution. The main variables identified are enforcement and control facilities, as given in Loop B1 and Loop

B2 respectively. The increase in water pollution incident may increase enforcements and the requirement

to install control facilities (Brown and Caraco, 1997; Faucette et al., 2009; Kaufman, 2000). Furthermore,

Loop B3 shows that enforcement could reduce malpractices at site, consequently reducing the risk of water

pollution (Gallardo and Sanchez, 2004). Similarly, enforcement in Loop B4 also plays a role in controlling

the common ill practice at site which is clearing of site at one go (Auckland Regional Council, 1999). The

restriction set by local authorities that promote pollution prevention strategies such as construction phasing

prohibits the ill-practice. This essentially provides a balance loop that could reduce the water pollution

incident. Hence, at the proximal level, enforcement is the key factor to control the site water pollution

incident besides the effectiveness of the control facility.

Proximal and Distal Factors

Loop R1, R2 and R4

Loop R1 shows that increase in the risk of site water pollution could reduce clients funding as environmental

improvements are always seen as a cost burden (Ab Rahman et al. 2010; Zhang et al. 2014). This further

creates cost constraint which limits designers choice of control facilities (McNeil, 1996) and may

consequently reduce the effectiveness of the control facilities, which in turn will increase the risk of water

pollution (Goodemote, 2005). For Loop R2, the addition of restricted land area purchased due to low funding

(McNeil, 1996) will have the same effect on design and subsequent results will prevail. Accordingly, Loop

R4 exhibits that the use of traditional procurement, mostly by public sectors to secure the lowest bid is

common when cost is the constraint (Gibson et al., 1996; Zhang et al., 2014). Traditional procurement

increases fragmentation between design and construction that exacerbates design errors especially due to

lack of construction knowledge (Song et al., 2009; Barrett et al., 1995). The consequences are similar to

the previous loops.

50
Loop R5, R7 and R8

Loop R5 extends from Loop R4, branching out from the fragmentation variable. Increased fragmentation

escalates the risk of miscommunication that creates error in delivering and receiving information (McNeill,

1996). This situation can increase site process error and results similar to Loop B3 are perceived. Loop R7

and R8 contain similar distal factors with Loop R5. The distal factors in Loop R7 results in the introduction

of proximal factors where the increase in malpractice increases also enforcements that could potentially

reduce water pollution incident over time. However, relying solely on enforcement does not provide a

balancing effect on water pollution as other variables reinforced the occurrence of water pollution. Loop R8

displays a similar proximal result with Loop B4.

Loop R3, R6, R9, R10, R11, R12

Loop R3 extends from the bottom left side of the CLD. The increase in water pollution during construction

may inhibit work progress due to site closure by local authority and the pollution should be resolved before

any work can resume. Reduced work progress increases construction time delay. Due to time delay and

schedule changes, earthwork activities during an earthwork season may be pushed into the wet season

(Goodemote, 2005; Apipattanavis et al., 2010) that consists of high occurrence and intensity of rain (Cerd,

2007). The rainfall could lead to high runoff volume that ultimately increases the risk of water pollution from

the intensified process of erosion and sediment production (Jia et al., 2013).

Loop R6 shows that low budget may cause reduced cost allocation on areas deemed as being less

critical by client, especially for feasibility study. Respondent C3 strongly suggested for clients to increase

the budget for site investigation so that designers would have a clear understanding of what they are about

to design, subsequently reducing the risk imposed on contractors. Shen et al. (2010) also found that

reduction in site investigation may mislead designers on the real site condition. This shortcoming increases

the occurrence of unforeseen situations such as unexpected utilities line. Discoveries of the utilities may

increase time delay due to the possible change in route and location of the lines. The distal factors

discussed lead to the emergence of proximal factors with results similar to Loop R3.

Extending from the distal factors discussed in Loop R4, the increase in fragmentation also

increases miscommunication in Loop R9, especially when delays occur during the transfer of information.

51
Delays in receiving and sending of information between different parties may increase time delay during

construction and proximal consequences observed in Loop R3 are expected.

Loop R10 has the combination of two loops, Loop R2 and Loop R6. In general, the effect of low

funding forces the increase in unforeseen situation that leads to the surge in water pollution risk. The

discussion for Loop R10 could be referred in the aforementioned loops. Loop R12 is the combination of

Loop R4 and R6. Due to low funding, traditional procurement is being preferred in order to find the lowest

bid cost. This type of procurement leads to fragmentation that enhances design errors and unforeseen

situation and could potentially increase the risk of water pollution. The description could also be referred to

in the aforementioned loops.

For Loop R11, the increase in fragmentation exacerbates project planning error. The error may

stem from clients who do not see beyond their constraint of time, cost and quality with minimal

understanding on the risk of water pollution (Wu et al., 2012). An ineffective project plan may further create

time constraint for site work. Respondent ES5 emphasized that clients also usually underestimate the

duration for earthwork and causes them to spend much time on front end works (design and procurement).

This situation creates a short time frame for earthwork contractor that may extend the work into the wet

season that heightens rain occurrence that increases the risk of water pollution.

In summary of the CLD, the essential proximal factor to be guarded is enforcement, while the root

of the issue may lie on the distal factor that stems from funding. This is due to the largest emphasis being

placed on enforcement in the balancing loops. In this context, the balancing loop plays a role in keeping

the occurrence of water pollution at bay and enforcement is the most critical variable, judging from the

highest number of highlighted boxes within the balancing loops (Table 3.2 refers). For the distal factor,

there are no balancing loops involved. This means that all variables in the reinforcing loop will lead to

increase the risk of water pollution. In this case, funding is the most highlighted core cause where positive

improvements in funding could subsequently reduce the negative effect on the ensuing distal and proximal

factors, ultimately reducing the risk of water pollution (Table 3.2 refers).

52
3.5 CLD for Case Project

The case study has been conducted on a public governed project, a three-storey district education office

building. The procurement system applied for this project was Design-Bid-Build using open tender. The

project was scheduled to complete within the duration of 3 years and 8 months. However, the completion

time has been delayed as the contractor was given 2 time extensions that summed to 189 days. The two-

time extension was given for two different work stages i.e., 1) earthwork and 2) electrical installation stage.

This study will focus on the reason for time extension and delays during the earthwork as it is the most

vulnerable stage in regards to water pollution (Ab Rahman et al., 2010).

The contractor was awarded the first extension that lengthened the original duration by 123 days.

According to the project engineer, waiting period during the earthwork occurred due to Variation Order

(V.O.) application. Fisk (1997) defined variation order as any deviation from an agreed well-defined scope

and schedule. The V.O. application was required due to the reason given as follows: After site clearance,

the contractor found that on-site soil is insufficient to build the required platform level. The awarded contract

did not state the requirement to import soil from off-site, giving way to V.O. The additional time request was

granted due to the importing of fill materials from off-site, besides the waiting period for V.O. approval.

A CLD has been drawn based on the input from project personnel. The project personnel were

queried on non-operational (earth moving activities) factors that could have caused time delay during

earthwork. It is a well-known fact that a time delay during earthwork might expose earth to a higher

occurrence of rainfall events, subsequently increasing the risk of water pollution. The case specific CLD

model is given in Figure 3.2. The CLD contains only 2 loops, which are Reinforcing Loops R1 and R2.

Focusing solely on water pollution, Loop R1 portrays the proximal factors that may increase the risk of water

pollution processes. In this particular case, the production measure of time has been extended during the

earthwork activity. Similar to findings from Figure 3.1, the origin of the time delay can be traced back to

clients funding, as shown in Loop R2. Lengthy administrative processes such as V.O. application and

approval causes land to be left opened for a certain period of time as contractors are not allowed to proceed

work on site until the V.O. approval is given. Alnuaimi et al. (2010) also reported similar result where change

order issued during construction is found to be the major cause of time and cost overrun that prone to

53
create confusion, leading to negative effects on the environment. In short, the case specific CLD also shows

a combination of different distal factors that have prompted the occurrence of proximal factors that ultimately

increases the risk of water pollution.

Funding Rain risk-

- Time delay
- +
-

+ R1
+ - -
Training
Work progress
- -
Water Pollution

Administrative Processes
+ +

Staff Competency
R2

Variation Order
+
Pre-construction
+ Stage Error Construction plan
+ changes
Attributes:
Variable - Proximal
Variable - Distal

Loop Variables in the loop


R1 Water Pollution-Work progress-Time delay-Rain- Water Pollution
R2 Water Pollution- Funding- Training- Staff competency-Pre-construction stage error-Construction plan
changes-Variation order- Administrative processes-Time delay-Rain risk- Water Pollution

Figure 3.2 CLD for Case Project

3.6 Discussion

Comparison between the three different methods (interview, review and case study-verification method) of

data collection showed similar trend where all methods provide site water pollution influencing factors that

derive from both distal and proximal factors. The CLDs given in Figure 3.1 and Figure 3.2 portrays the

systemic perspective of the effect distal factors have on proximal factors that further enhances the risk of

water pollution. This negative effect from one variable to another moves in a cyclical manner, where the

circumstances will be on-going negative effects if the distal factors are not improved positively. Furthermore,

54
Figure 3.2 (case study) was drawn following the techniques used to produce the CLD in Figure 3.1 where

it shows that the method could also be applied using real case project data.

It is also worth highlighting the difference between the data represented using a straight forward

linear approach (Table 2.3) as compared to a dynamic approach (Figure 3.1 and Table 3.2). From the linear

perspective, emphasis from the respondents were heavier on the proximal rather than the distal factors

(Table 2.3, bolded box). This is so as the linear system does not take into account how the distal factors

contribute to each of the proximal factors as it only shows simple cause-effect relations. This kind of

representation disregards the interaction between factors which further restricts the holistic perspective of

cause-effect relationship among variables. On the other hand, CLD assembles the different variables into

a system causing dynamic changes. The CLD clearly shows the tendency of distal factors in affecting the

occurrence of proximal factors that could potentially lead to water pollution incidents and how water pollution

could eventually being related back to the distal factors. However, both linear and the systemic thinking

method complement each other where the systems approach still relies on the cause-effect variables.

From the loop, it could be understood that a mere controlling solution, especially at the proximal

level could not solve the problem at its source, in this case, which originates from the distal factors. This

control type approach is commonly known as the end-of-pipe solutions which are usually used to control

pollutions. A holistic view should be embraced in order to break the norm, subsequently enhancing the

concept of Pollution Prevention. The recognition of the source factors could prevent pollution incidences

from taking place. Typically, pollution prevention strategies could reduce the overall cost and provide

substantial savings that may consequently affect the funding factor positively (Ab. Rahman et al. 2010;

Goodemote, 2005). Hill and Bowen (1997) have also encouraged the use of systems approach to identify

the relationship between economics and environment where through the use of CLD, this relationship has

been proven. In this study, the CLD has established the relationship between the proximal and distal factor

with water pollution.

55
3.7 Conclusion

The findings suggest that distal factors have a domino effect on the proximal factors where the dynamic

interaction between them could ultimately increase the risk of site water pollution. The CLD representation

of those variables highlighted the criticality of managing the distal factors, which has commonly being

ignored in construction. Representation of the related factors using the CLD is a new scientific

establishment in the field of site water pollution as earlier studies have provided only the linear cause-effect

factors without acknowledging the systemic interaction between those factors. From the practical point of

view, this research enables the industry players to understand, identify and manage the core cause of site

water pollution from a larger perspective. The use of CLD enables the practitioners to narrow down essential

factors that should be enhanced (balancing factor) as well as factors that should be controlled (reinforcing

factor), especially when many different factors are involved. The holistic perspective allows industry players

to act proactively in solving problems at its core. Besides that, the proposed methods of building the CLD

can be adapted and applied in problematic areas to find the root cause of problem for a holistic and

prevention-based approach.

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Confined site construction: A qualitative investigation of critical issues affecting management of health

and safety. Journal of Civil Engineering and Construction Technology 2, 138-146.

Sterman, J. D., 2002. System dynamics: systems thinking and modelling for a complex world. Working

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Yuan, H., Hao, J., Lu, S., 2014. Modelling effective construction waste management through causal loop

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Zhang, X., Wu, Y., Shen, L., 2014. Embedding green in project-based organizations: the way ahead in the

construction industry? Journal of Cleaner Production

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CHAPTER 4
THE CONCEPTION OF PREVENTION-BASED APPROACH TO MANAGE

CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER POLLUTION

This chapter has been extracted from:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), A Cleaner Production-Pollution Prevention Based

Framework for Construction Site Induced Water Pollution. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for

Review.

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), Clean-Lean Integration: A Study on Earthworks

Operation. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for Review.

4.1 Introduction

The previous two chapters have explored the causes of construction site water pollution through different

means of data attainment such as systematic review, in-depth interview and case study. The data were

further analyzed and presented in an unconventional way by using a system dynamic tool called Causal

Loop Diagram (CLD). The CLD models have provided a systemic view of the potential factors involved in

increasing the risk of water pollution. The dynamic cause-effect relationship revealed that causal factors

could range from proximal to the commonly overlooked distal factors. Hence, the prior chapters have

provided the basis of the problem for this study. The ensuing chapters will seek to develop solutions for the

established problem of construction site water pollution. The chapters will strive to develop improvement

strategies based on the concept of prevention as it is relatively a better option compared to the common

environmental management system of control-based solution. The proposed strategies are envisaged for

two levels of construction which are the planning and operation stage. For the construction planning stage,

focus will be given on essential construction planning elements such as construction schedule, method and

site layout while for the operational improvement, the concept of lean production will be adopted. All

proposed solutions are in the form of integration between different concepts and elements but towards a

single focus of embracing prevention-based approaches. Therefore, it is essential to first provide a

conceptual integration between the different concepts and elements, which will be addressed in this

61
chapter. This chapter aims to develop conceptual integrations of construction management and

environmental prevention approaches to holistically address the production and environmental factors for

construction site water pollution at the planning and operational stage of construction. The objectives of this

chapter is twofold: 1) to develop a theoretical based integrated framework that combines water pollution

preventive practices (WP3) with construction planning elements and 2) to develop a conceptual integration

between the concepts of lean production and cleaner production.

4.2 Concepts in the Environmental Management Practices

Environmental Management Practices are made up of various concepts in the form of a staircase, as given

in Figure 4.1. Concepts located higher on the staircase includes the concepts below with additional scope

and complexity (Hamner, 1996). The concepts on the staircase are listed as follows, from the highest to the

lowest: Sustainable Development; Industrial Ecology; Cleaner Production; Pollution Prevention; Waste

Minimization; Recycling; Pollution Control; and Waste Disposal.

Scope and
Result
Sustainable Development

Industrial Ecology

Cleaner Production

Pollution Prevention

Waste Minimization

Recycling

Pollution Control

Waste Disposal

Environmental Management Systems

Time and Work

Figure 4.1 Concepts in Environmental Management Practices (Adapted from Hamner, 1996)

4.2.1 Concept of Prevention

Prevention-based approaches enable the critical evaluation and application to reduce and eliminate

problems at its source. The emphasis given by key organizations such as US Environmental Protection

62
Agency (US EPA) and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) on preventive approaches have

created a paradigm shift towards decreasing and/or eliminating pollution rather than to manage the pollution

after it has been generated (Freeman, 1995; UNEP, 1996). The emergence of prevention-based

approaches e.g. Cleaner Production (CP) and Pollution Prevention (P2) do not only offer environmental

advantages but also include cost benefits (Hilson, 2003). The concepts have created a reputable image in

the manufacturing and industrial sectors, especially concerning pollutants such as carbon emission.

However, the extent of its usage in construction related water pollution is still minimal as limited studies

were found in regards to water pollution prevention in construction. Hence, this study aims to fill the

knowledge gap by studying and applying preventive strategies to reduce the risk of construction site water

pollution.

4.2.2 Cleaner Production (CP) and Pollution Prevention (P2)

UNEP (1996) defined CP as the continuous application of an integrated preventive environmental strategy

applied to processes, products and services to increase the overall efficiency to reduce risks to humans

and the environment. On the other hand, US EPA defined P2 as the use of materials, processes or

practices that reduce or eliminate the creation of pollutants or wastes at the source (Freeman, 1995).

Judging solely from the definition, the concept of CP provides a broader spectrum as compared to P2 and

the distinguished differences between both terms have been thoroughly discussed in Hilson (2003).

According to Hilson (2003), CP is a continuous environmental approach that embraces P2 at its core along

with business concerns. The emphasis is to prevent the production of pollutions rather than to depend on

the end-of-pipe systems where pollutants are being treated after it has been produced (Huisingh and Baas,

1991). This is in line with Van Berkel (2000) who described P2 as being part of CP. However, in terms of

applicability, CP may have a smaller scope as compared to P2 as it is best suited for the production sector,

while P2 can be applied to any sector (Glavi and Lukman, 2007). Together, both concepts, CP-P2 embrace

similar philosophy of pollution prevention through source reduction with minimal utilization of resources

(Glavi and Lukman, 2007).

CP-P2 are gaining popularity in recent times with applications found in different sectors e.g.

manufacturing, industrial, waste water treatment and mining (Basu and Zyl, 2006; Co et al., 2009; Cabello

63
Eras et al., 2013; Wolff, 2015). Nonetheless, the same could not be implied for construction as limited

research has been observed within this sector. From a title/abstract/keyword search in Scopus, the subject

heading cleaner production has yielded 2167 results, but with the addition of the word construction in the

heading, the search returned only 80 findings which consist of 3.7% of the total search. Similarly, search

on pollution prevention yielded 4309 results and the addition of the word construction resulted in 196

findings that represent 4.6% of the total search result. Most construction related CP studies focused on

construction material and technology with major concerns on carbon/ energy emission and construction

demolition waste (Al-Damkhi et al., 2008; Fernndez, 2007; Chou and Le, 2014; Da Paz et al., 2014;

Kucukvar et al., 2014; Pavi et al., 2014; Prez-Martnez et al., 2014), with no particular result found on

water pollution. As for P2, the results for construction were more diverse, which included also health and

safety, marine pollution and water pollution. The context of water pollution itself comprised of 41 (21%)

results out of 196 findings on P2 in construction.

In summary, the CP-P2 could be represented as a prevention concept that falls back to source

reduction. This concept will be integrated with construction planning elements to better manage

construction site water pollution, which will further be explored in Section 4.6.

4.2.3 Cleaner Production: The Environmental-Production Improvement Strategy

In the environmental management practices hierarchy, the cleaner production concept (CP) is found to be

more encapsulating as it addresses also the production factor within a system. CP functions to increase

productivity through efficient use of resource, besides to promote better environmental performance

through source reduction and emission by providing holistic view of a system (Kjaerheim, 2005; Cabello

Eras et al., 2013). In construction, CP has been used to benefit the earthworks construction by improving

the environment and budget performance of an earthwork site (Cabello Eras et al. 2013). The environmental

improvement resulted in less waste (soil), fuel, greenhouse gas emission and other particulate matters. The

Cleaner Production concept that involves the elements of environment and production is suitable to be

integrated at the operational level of construction. However, till date, there is no study found to apply cleaner

production in regards to construction site water pollution and this has created opportunity for this PhD study

to be conducted and to fill the gap in knowledge.

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4.3 The Common Environmental Approach in Managing Construction Site Water Pollution

4.3.1 Mitigation Approach

The use of mitigation (structural) based erosion and sediment control facilities are common to reduce the

risk of water pollution from construction site. These mitigation approaches require the construction and

installation of control facilities e.g. check dams, contour drain, retention pond, silt fence, dewatering and

flocculation (NZTA, 2010). Numerous works have been done to enhance the functionality of those control

facilities (Al-Ani et al., 2009; Ahmad et al., 2014). However, there are drawbacks of such end-of pipe

approaches that include high requirements in cost, reduction in usable site areas, changes to natural site

hydrology and inflexible site design (Shaver, 2000). In order to overcome these, preventive (non-structural)

approaches based on management and good housekeeping practices were introduced (Hinman, 2005).

However, the common emphasis given on the intermediate process of erosion instead of runoff has caused

pollution management efforts to be non-holistic. Runoff, the enabler for erosion, is often neglected as it is

not recognized as a pollutant since it does not have a well-defined source; unlike sediment (Parikh et al.,

2005). In addition to that, the elements of runoff and erosion sediment have also been dealt in isolation

even though the two elements are in connection with each other. As a result, the common solution which

addresses erosion and sediment rather than runoff gives in to mere superficial remediation solutions that

is based on control rather than prevention (Part of this section has been discussed and can be referred to

in Chapter 1.

4.4 Construction Planning and Operation

Before the start of construction or site mobilisation, the main contractor will usually develop the pre-

construction planning. The planning will then evolve into a more detailed plan with additional input from

sub-contractors during construction. This approach is essential in construction planning to determine what

to do, how to do it, sequence and time to do, required resources and cost of doing (Laufer and Cohenca,

1990). Laufer et al., 1993 defined nine functional areas in construction planning: engineering and method,

organization and contract, schedule, cash flow, major equipment, site layout and logistics, work methods,

manpower and material allocation. Similarly, Hendrikson and Au (2000) associated construction planning

to the choice of construction technology, equipment and material, work task definition, construction site

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layout, estimation of resources and duration of individual task, estimation of cost, project schedule and

identification of interaction between activities. The common emphasis is on making sure the planning is

being prepared well enough for the operation to proceed smoothly whereby the common goal in

construction is to achieve the targeted time, cost and quality of the project (Faniran et al., 1998). The

planning of construction and its operation has commonly being conducted without much thought given to

the environment, especially on site water pollution. With the growth in concern over environmental impacts

done during construction, the common set of objectives should be revamped by adding in the environmental

aspect. Chen et al. (2005) emphasised that construction planning should not only aim to meet the common

concerns such as time, cost and quality but also to explore the possibility to minimise environmental

impacts. In a common scenario, the environmental aspect is often side-lined. In order to have the best

interest for both aspects, seamless integration to benefit both aspects would be preferred and this is where

this study will contribute.

4.4.1 Construction Planning and Site Sediment Pollution

Major sediment production occurs during the early stages of construction such as the land clearing and site

preparation stage where contractors would have to deal with different issues i.e. construction planning

(time; site layout; method) and erosion sediment control simultaneously. Construction planning and erosion

sediment control facilities are two distinct elements that address issues related to productivity and

environment respectively. The strategies to control site water pollution were prepared by consultants at

initial stage of a project i.e. planning and design (Song et al., 2009). This common procedure lacks input

from contractors, consequently leading to judgments that are incomplete and deficient as they do not have

the best construction knowledge, let alone to arrange time and resources for an efficient construction

planning (Sloat and Redden, 2005). Similar scenario is also applicable during construction where

contractors are unaware of the consequences of their construction planning strategies on erosion and

sediment. For example, a common practice during construction is to clear the entire site as it eases the

movement of work, equipment and vehicles. However, the whole site clearance also increases the risk of

severe erosion and sediment production as the area is left disturbed and will be subjected to rain fall events

during the course of work. As a result, construction planning elements that were planned to achieve

conventional objectives (time, cost, quality) may have negative consequences over other aspects such as

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erosion and sediment. The control of those consequences is within the scope of contractors and as a result,

they also have the responsibility to reduce the risk of construction induced water pollution. Other sectors

such as safety and health (Hare, 2006) has successfully integrated the element of health and safety into

construction planning but none found on environment. Therefore, the improvement strategies proposed in

this study will include construction planning aspect into construction water pollution prevention approaches.

The theoretical framework of the proposed integration will be established in this chapter where it will further

be verified with the industry and shown in the following chapter.

4.4.2 Construction Operation (Earthworks) and Site Sediment Pollution

Construction operation is the means of achieving the required goal through the use of resources (Halpin,

2005). Construction operation poses the highest risk of construction site water pollution would be during

earthworks where land is being cleared and most vulnerable to erosive agents (Ab Rahman et al., 2010).

Typically, the major concern of this stage is to complete the work within the time, cost and quality expected.

Earthwork has been plagued with productivity issues, consequently igniting interest among researches

seeking to improve this construction operation (Martinez, 1998; Dawood, et al., 2010). Earthworks

progression is crucial in the development of a project because it determines, to a large extent, the proper

flow of work for the following activities (Fu, 2013) that affects the time factor in a project. Furthermore, the

requirements for expensive heavy equipment and skilled manpower involve major cost in a project.

Earthwork has an influential effect on the overall success of a construction project but the uncertain and

highly variable environment makes the success hard to achieve (Kirchbach, et al., 2012). Various factors

could affect the performance of an earthwork operation e.g., types of soil, haul road, site access point,

location of borrow pit, construction method and equipment availability (Martinez, 1998). In addition to that,

weather, operators experience, haul distance and gradient, schedule restriction and conflict with other

activities/ obstructions could also dampen an operations performance (Martinez, 1998; Christian and Xie,

1996).

Earthwork only occupies short time period of a whole construction but the potential risk and threat

to the environment is great through large scale of clearing and grubbing operations (Ooshaksaraie, et al.,

2009; Taylor and Field, 2007). A calculated Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) figure for a cleared

67
earthwork site reveals an estimated 16.14 tonnes of sediment production, in comparison to the pre-

earthwork yield of 3.20 tonnes (Pain, 2014). If a cleared site is left uncontrolled and mismanaged, severe

soil erosion and sediment production could take place, leading to water pollution (Ooshaksaraie, et al.,

2009). Mass grading creates two critical variables i.e., time and size of area exposed, that should be well

managed to minimise the negative effects of site clearance (Brown and Caraco, 1997; Pain, 2014).

Commonly, the environmental problems arising from earthwork operation has been treated in isolation from

production (Lewis and Hajji, 2012). The independent treatment creates segregated efforts that may trigger

the notion of one more important than the other. Hence, to mitigate this situation, mutual benefits in

integrating production and environment should be demonstrated. Works have been done to integrate both

the elements of production and environment in earthwork. Lewis and Hajji (2012) and Golzarpoor, et al.

(2013) have provided a synergistic approach that combine production and environmental factors to

determine the cost, fuel, energy and emission from earthwork operations. Gonzalez and Echaveguren

(2012) and Capony, et al. (2012) also conducted similar research using discrete event simulation and GPS

technology respectively. However, most of the studies concentrated on the issue of air and carbon emission

with least regards for water pollution. Therefore, this research attempts to fill the knowledge gap by

managing environmental issue of earthwork, from the standpoint of water pollution that also benefits the

production.

4.4.2.1 Lean production / lean thinking

Lean thinking is a management philosophy that originated from the Toyota Production System (TPS). The

focus of lean thinking is to deliver value to customers through five principles which consist of the followings:

1) Specify value by specific product (value); 2) Identify value stream for each product (value stream); 3)

Make value flow without interruption (flow); 4) Allow customer to pull value from product (pull) and 5) Pursue

perfection (perfection) (Womack and Jones, 1996). This philosophy was later introduced into construction

by Koskela (1992) who proposed the Transformation-Flow-Value (TFV) theory to replace the common

reliance on the conversion model. The addition of flow and value provides a new perspective for the study

of production processes as it allows the recognition of waste through in-depth understanding of the

processes (Freire and Alarcon, 2002). This process driven performance improvement approach contradicts

68
the commonly employed result driven approach because it relies on making prior improvement to the

arrangement of work processes, rather than using control actions such as inspection. Furthermore, the

result driven approach may inherently increase waste in processes through numerous inspections

conducted to detect defect (Mitropoulos and Howell, 2001).

Waste from a Lean Thinking Perspective

Process activities can be categorized into two types, which are Value Added (VA) and Non-Value Added

(NVA) activities (Barkman and Marks, 2007). VA activities convert material and information towards the

output required by the customer. On the other hand, NVA activities do not add value to the end product and

could further be divided into NVA (necessary) and NVA (waste) activities. NVA (necessary) are supporting

activities such as equipment maintenance that do not create the output but are necessary to ensure the

smooth flow of the VA processes. On the other hand, NVA (waste) are activities that are essential to be

identified and eliminated. Seven types of waste commonly found in production are (Ohno, 1988): 1)

Overproduction; 2) Waiting; 3) Transportation; 4) Over processing/ Complexity; 5) Inventory; 6) Movement;

and 7) Defect. Additional wastes proposed by researches are unutilized resources/ talents (Bodek, 2007)

and output that do not meet customers needs (Womack and Jones, 1996).

4.4.2.2 Lean and the Environment

Apart from the typical production waste, the increased concern on environmental sustainability has

generated a new form of waste called environmental waste. Environmental waste is defined as the

excessive use of resources that result in affluence released into the air, water or land that may endanger

people and also the environment (US EPA, 2007). Detailed relationship between the production and

environmental waste could be found in US EPA (2007) where it portrays the interchangeable relationship

between lean and the environment. The connection between production and environmental performance

has been established with claims that lean reduces the environmental effect (decreased energy, material

use, transportation and solid waste) due to time reduction in processes (Qui and Chen, 2009). This is

supported by various researches who suggested that the integration between lean and environment in

construction provides mutual benefits in terms of productivity and cleaner environment (Belayutham and

69
Gonzlez, 2013; Carneiro et al. 2012; Martinez et al. 2009). However, since lean concept does not explicitly

incorporate environmental considerations, a blind spot is being created with respect to the environment.

4.5 Research Method for Conceptual Integration between Construction Management and

Environmental Prevention Approaches

This chapter has been conceived to provide conceptual integration between construction management and

site water pollution prevention approaches at two levels, which are: 1) Planning level: Construction

planning-water pollution prevention approach and 2) Operational level: Clean-lean concept. For these

conceptual outcomes, the use of integrative literature review has been done. The research works are given

in Table 4.1.

Table 4.1 Work Stages for Chapter 4

Work Objective Data Collection Data Analysis Outcome


Stage Method
Stage To develop a theoretical based Integrative Inductive Construction
1 integrated framework that literature review Content planning-Water
combines water pollution Analysis pollution prevention
preventive practices (WP3) with Framework
construction planning elements

Stage To develop a conceptual Clean-lean


2 integration between the Framework
concepts of lean production and
cleaner production.

Conceptual framework

According to Jabareen (2009), conceptual framework is a product that emerges from qualitative process of

theorization using qualitative based tools that enables in-depth comprehension of complex and interrelated

occurrences that require multidisciplinary approach. Towards building the conceptual framework, the steps

proposed by Jabareen (2009) have been followed due to similar tenets embraced, where emphasis were

given on linking different disciplines to different knowledge sectors. As such, this phase requires 1) Data

sourcing; 2) Categorization; 3) Concept building; 4) Integrating Concepts and synthesizing to create a

theoretical framework. The following steps of 5) Validating the framework and 6) Rethinking the framework

will discussed in the following sections as this chapter only aims to provide the theoretical framework. In

70
order to ensure a good conceptual framework being produced, criteria suggested by Whetten (1989) i.e.

provide reasoning, minimal use of variables, focused, complete, original and significant were adhered.

Integrative Literature Review

Qualitative approach has been used to explore the subjects of this study. Similar to Spillane et al. (2011)

who has utilized qualitative approach for their exploratory study, a relatively new exploration on the

integration of different construction management aspects with preventive approaches in water pollution is

deemed suitable to be investigated using qualitative approaches. A qualitative approach of integrative

literature review has been conducted to identify the fundamentals of the different concepts before

establishing the connection between them. Integrative literature review is a form of research that reviews,

critiques and synthesizes representative literature on a topic in an integrated way such that new framework

and perspectives on a topic is generated (Torraco, 2005). This method is considered suitable as this study

will collate different aspects of construction planning and water pollution prevention practices and LP and

CP concept towards producing a conceptual relationship between them. Those subject and concepts will

be compared to find similarities and differences by analyzing its core value. Integrated literature review was

selected over systematic review as the latter was deemed to be unsuitable as it is commonly employed for

a complete compilation of the literature, especially in topics that are already developed (Kohtala, 2014).

Integrated literature review was found to be most appropriate for new studies where the incorporation of

different theoretical subject is required to develop new conceptual framework (Torraco, 2005).

4.5.1 Stage 1

The outcome of this stage is to develop a theoretical based integrated framework that combines water

pollution preventive approaches (WP3) with construction planning elements. Hence, the objective of this

stage is to develop a theoretical based integrated framework that combines water pollution preventive

practices (WP3) with construction planning elements. Primarily, this study is grounded to the core value of

CP-P2, which is prevention. Prevention approaches were focused upon to reduce construction site induced

water pollution. In general, the research identifies preventive approaches used to manage the source of

water pollution which stem from excessive runoff and erosion. The preventive approaches are further

explored to recognize its potential to be managed seamlessly with construction planning. A theoretical

71
based framework will then be produced by integrating water pollution prevention approaches (WP3) with

construction planning. The theoretical framework in this chapter is established by following the steps s

proposed by Jabareen (2009). Step 1 to 4 (data sourcing, categorization, concept building and integrating

and synthesizing concepts) for producing the conceptual framework for Stage 1 will be discussed

seamlessly with the results in the data analysis section in Section 4.6. The last two steps of validating the

framework and rethinking the framework will be discussed in the following chapter.

4.5.2 Stage 2

Stage 2 is conceived to develop an integration between the concepts of Lean production and Cleaner

Production in order to manage the operational aspect of construction towards improving its production and

environmental (site water pollution) aspect. A systematic protocol suggested by Torraco (2005) has been

used to carry out the literature search, as shown in Table 4.2. Findings in Stage 2 will establish the

foundation and forms the direction of the next work phase which is the development of a clean-lean method

to improve the production and environmental aspect of construction.

Table 4.2 Systematic Literature Search

Steps involved Lean Production (LP) Cleaner Production (CP)

Step 1 Initial source of data Web of Science (Highly cited papers)

Criteria All year; English; Engineering, All year; English; Engineering,


Operation research management Environmental science ecology;
science; any type. any type.

Search term lean thinking; lean production; cleaner production


lean concept; lean philosophy

Step 2 Snowball sampling Authors with the highest citation (identified from the articles in Step 1)

Criteria Literature review section; fundamentals of the concept.

Step 3 Data analysis Content analysis

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Source of data for LP

In order to attain the fundamentals of LP, literature search has first been conducted based on citation

analysis (Step 1) using Web of Science database. Citation analysis reflects work recognition within the

academic community and is a common method used to identify classic works (Lefaivre, 2011). Literature is

sought in order to find the essential components (goal and characteristics) of lean. The articles have been

searched using terms such as lean thinking, lean production, lean concept and lean philosophy. Top

10% from the highest cited papers for each term are selected and to undergo further elimination by going

through the title and abstract. The criteria for elimination are articles which are based on application or the

use of particular lean tools as well as the integration of lean with other concepts. The reason for the

elimination criteria is due to the intent of this study, which is to identify the core concept and not the

application as the derived application by researches might have changed the core value of the original

concept. Thus, the elimination results in a final number of 44 articles that denote the fundamentals of lean.

However, after going through the articles, it is found that most of the contents have referred the lean concept

to prior authors and this has prompted further investigation to identify the initial authors. The subsequent

process is called snow ball sampling (Step 2) whereby articles found in Step 1 are read through to find the

pioneer references for lean by identifying authors with the highest frequency of citation within the articles.

Finally, 11 articles and books have been selected to represent the fundamentals of LP, given as follows:1)

Ohno (1988); 2) Womack et al. (1990); 3) Monden (1993); 4) Womack and Jones (1996); 5) Katayama and

Bennett (1996); 6) Spear and Bowen (1999); 7) Shah and Ward (2003); 8) Liker (2004); 9) Hines et al.

(2004); 10) Bhasin and Burcher (2006).

Source of Data for CP

In order to identify the fundamentals of CP, similar steps to LP have been used. In Step 1, search have

been made based on citation analysis using Web of Science database with the term cleaner production.

From the generated figure, top 10% of the outcome have been selected. From there, an elimination process

has been undertaken to exclude papers that do not represent the fundamentals of CP based on the title

and abstract. Following that, detailed reading has been done on the remaining papers in order to find

contents that fit into the fundamentals of CP where finally, 20 papers are left after elimination. Similar to the

73
findings from LP, the 20 articles have mostly referred the CP concept to previous authors and consequently

prompted further exploration to identify works of the initial authors. Finally, 5 most frequently cited articles

and guidelines have been selected to represent the fundamentals of CP, given as follows: 1) US EPA

(1998); 2) UNEP (1996); 3) Fresner (1998); 4) UNIDO (2002) and 5) Hilson (2003).

Data analysis

All the finalized articles and books were further analyzed using content analysis by following the steps

provided by Elo and Kyngas (2008). The steps involve 1) Open coding: Contents are being read through

and results in several key terms; 2) Categorization: The key terms are further divided into categories to

ease explanation and description; 3) Abstraction: Further, sub-categories are collated into main categories.

Detailed discussion on the integration between LP and CP is given in Section 4.7.

4.6 Relationship between Construction Planning and Water Pollution Prevention

4.6.1 Preventive approaches to manage runoff and erosion

CP-P2 based water pollution approaches

A general search on Scopus database found that limited research has been reported on preventive

measures and therefore, a wider scope of literature search was favored. A different combination of

keywords were used in Google as well as Google Scholar and most related contents were observed in

guidelines and standards provided by governmental departments. This is echoed by earlier finding of 21%

water P2 research that indicates a rather low emphasis given on the subject, as compared to other

environmental concerns such as air, noise and carbon emission. This creates a gap in current knowledge

as the potential damage from water pollution is substantial and more studies should be done to prevent its

occurrence. From the cumulated findings, key terms in regards to water pollution include rainfall runoff,

erosion, sediment, Best Management Practices (BMP), Storm Water Prevention Plan (SWPPP) and other

mitigation based approaches associated with governmental guidelines, standards and acts. There was a

clear distinction between the term runoff and erosion sediment which prompted the subsequent search

to focus on preventive approaches for those subjects. Runoff, erosion and sediment are different elements

but very much interrelated to each other, especially in construction. The chain of reaction starts from runoff

that detaches soil, causing erosion which later transports the soil and is known as sediment. Hence, the

74
control of runoff may subsequently reduce erosion and sediment. However, as the concern on the

environment has increased, many local guidelines have been adopted to address specific problems. The

specialization causes broken linkage between runoff management and erosion control, which are supposed

to be jointly managed (Kaufman, 2000).

In terms of runoff prevention, Low Impact Development (LID) is an alternative method for storm

water management, established by Prince Georges County, Maryland in the early 1990s (LID Center,

2000). Similar approaches were observed in different countries with different terms such as Low Impact

Design in New Zealand and Control at Source in Malaysia (Shaver, 2000; DID, 2000). LID which holds on

to the principle of source reduction was introduced to reduce general storm water runoff using both

structural (bio retention, infiltration trenches, wetlands, grass swales, etc.) and non-structural (preservation

of natural vegetation and reducing impervious surfaces) approaches. Even though LID was not established

exclusively for construction site use, the non-structural approaches do play a big role for construction site

runoff management and can be observed in most governmental standards and guideline (Shaver, 2000;

Hinman, 2005).

Erosion and sediment preventive approaches also contain similar approaches to non-structural LID

techniques but being provided separately, in its relevant guides. Despite the similarities, minimal guidance

is given on ways to combine those approaches together, leaving contractor in the dark. Commonly, different

people design storm water treatments and erosion control practices. Those plans will be submitted to

different agencies with different approvals, which suggests disintegration between the two systems (Brown

and Caraco, 1997). Most Erosion and Sediment Control (ESC) manuals also provide vague coverage on

non-structural erosion prevention techniques such as clearing restriction, minimizing disturbance and

construction phasing. In addition, many guidelines are outdated and lack specific guidance on where and

when those approaches are appropriate (Brown and Caraco, 1997). Erosion and sediment prevention

approaches also include material based approaches that utilizes additional facilities/ materials to prevent

erosion e.g. soil stabilization using straw mulch. Nonetheless, these material based prevention approaches

may come with additional cost for material and fixing. Progression towards a more holistic system requires

innovative approaches towards reducing the reliance on additional facilities.

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The following content reports results from the integrative literature review where literature from

different themes (runoff and erosion prevention approaches) were sourced and sorted to create a new

concept called water pollution prevention practices (WP3). The water pollution prevention practices (WP3)

is a collation of preventive approaches for runoff and erosion, as they were commonly being treated in

isolation. For runoff prevention, the concept of Low Impact Development (LID) has been explored together

with other similar concepts e.g. Low Impact Design and Control at Source Storm Water Management. As

for erosion prevention, no particular concept has been found besides the common erosion prevention Best

Management Practices (BMP). The key practices for both processes are given in Table 4.3.

The sources used to compile the runoff prevention practices are given as follows: Department of

Environmental Resources, 1999; Hinman, 2005; DID, 2000; Shaver, 2000 and EPA Division, 2012. For

erosion prevention practices, the sources referred to are as follows: Department of Irrigation and Drainage,

2010; Auckland Regional Council, 1999; Witheridge, 2012; Environment Protection Authority, 2011; US

EPA, 2012 and EPA Victoria, 1996. The practices found for both processes are very similar to each other

with some redundancies, enhancing the underlying rationale for them to be unified as WP3.

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Table 4.3 Water Pollution Prevention Practices (WP3)

WP3 Runoff Prevention Practices Erosion Prevention Practices


Stage

1 Design to fit - Plan operation to fit existing site - Plan development to fit site
natural features. - Determine limit of land clearing and shaping
features - Fit design development to land - Divide site into natural drainage areas
Planning and Design

sensitivity - Minimize clearing


2 Erosion and - Soil erosion control practices - Minimize soil erosion
sediment - Minimize soil erosion - Runoff control and management
practices, - Sediment prevention and control - Earthwork and erosion control
drainage - Slope stabilization - Sediment control
control and - Protect water courses - Slope stabilization
slope - Stabilize exposed areas rapidly - Stabilize exposed area rapidly
stabilization - Install perimeter controls - Install perimeter control
- Runoff flow management - Stabilize drainage ways
- Inlet protection
3 Scheduling - Scheduling - Stage construction
- Coordinate planning and activities - Integrate erosion and sediment control issues
- Stage construction into site and construction planning
- Timing - Minimize the extent and duration of site
Pre-Construction

disturbance
- Phase construction
- Work scheduling
4 Method, - Proper equipment - Soil surfaces in a roughened condition
material and - Materials - Minimize excavation, trenching activities
equipment - Reduce soil compaction
5 Access route, - Preserve topsoil and other assets - Preserve top soil
site layout and - Access routes - Access route and site management
management - Soil stockpile and batters
- Minimize site disturbance
6 Inspection, - Inspection and maintenance - Site maintenance
maintenance, - Train personnel implementing - Get registered
Construction

training, project activities - Make sure plan evolves


enforcement, - Maintenance - Assess and adjust
housekeeping, - Enforcement - Monitor site and adjust ESC practices to
etc. maintain performance standard
- Housekeeping
- Education and awareness

The practices were arranged according to categories that were established following the steps

suggested by Elo and Kyngas (2008). Six categories were decided: 1) design to fit natural settings; 2)

erosion and sediment practices; 3) scheduling 4) construction method, material and equipment; 5) site

layout; 6) maintenance and inspection. The six categories of practices apply to different working stages in

construction. Categories 1 and 2 are in the planning and design stage because the ability to design a project

to suit its environment is best done by environmental consultants, whereas the development of mitigation

based erosion, sediment and drainage control are commonly being planned and designed by engineers

(Department of Environmental Resources, 1999; Song et al., 2009). Categories 3, 4 and 5 are mainly under

77
contractors job specification prior to construction, i.e. pre-construction planning (DID, 2000). Contractors

could plan schedule that suits the requirement for runoff and erosion prevention, to select methods which

are less impactful as well as to arrange site layout with minimal vehicle movement and away from sensitive

areas. Category 6 relates to good practices conducted during construction and involves operational

elements of maintenance and control during construction, rather than prevention (DID, 2000). Even though

it is within contractors work scope, the mitigation nature of those practices contradicts the aim of this study,

which is to prevent rather than control. In conclusion, practices in categories 3, 4 and 5 are most relevant

to represent the WP3 to be integrated with site based construction planning.

4.6.2 Theoretical linkage between WP3 and Construction Planning

This section reports results from the integrated literature review approach where it collates the literatures

found on WP3 (Section 4.6.1 refers) and construction planning. The functional areas of construction

planning is given by Laufer et al. (1993) and Hendrikson and Au (2000). Using the inductive content analysis

steps by Elo and Kyngas (2008), the functional areas were sorted into a few categories i.e. schedule,

method, cost and site layout. Referring to Table 4.4, the categories of schedule, method and site layout

shows a direct connection with the categories established in WP3 (Table 4.3 refers), apart from cost. The

cost dimension does not have direct physical implications with the prevention practices and therefore is

beyond the scope of this study.

Table 4.4 Main Categories of Construction Planning

Components Schedule Method Site layout Cost


Laufer et al., Schedule Engineering and method Site layout Organization
1993 Major equipment and logistics and contract
Work method Cash flow
Manpower and material
allocation

Hendrikson and Work task definition Choice of construction Construction Cost estimation
Au, 2000 Resources and task technology site layout
duration estimation Equipment and material
Project schedule
Interaction between
activities

78
In order to achieve a holistic environmental friendly site based construction plan, it is essential to appreciate

WP3 as an integral aspect of construction planning from the beginning. Integrating environmental protection

at the pre-construction planning stage ensures that measures to avoid and reduce pollution can be built-in

to the plans design and work schedule (EPA Victoria, 1996). Therefore, incorporating WP3 at the pre-

construction planning stage as one of the objective, besides the traditional iron triangle, allows contractors

to think, provide input, brainstorm, discuss and navigate ways for construction to be done with minimal

negative impact. In this study, the theoretical integration between WP3 and construction planning is given

in Figure 4.1, with descriptions shown in Figure 4.2.

WP3 -Construction Planning

Construction Planning Construction Site Layout Construction


Schedule Method

Phasing/ Staging Protect sensitive areas Reduce soil compaction.


Timing Minimize site Minimize excavation.
WP3 disturbance. Existing trees.
Limit accessibility. Restrict trenching.
Provide site plan. Equipment.

Figure 4.2 WP3-Construction Planning Theoretical Framework

79
SITE LAYOUT
Protect sensitive areas
Clear off any siting of facilities on sensitive
areas such as easily compacted soil, natural
preservation area and drainage channels METHOD
Layout areas that do not require removal of
trees. Reduce soil compaction
Reduce imperviousness.
Reduce and minimize activities that
Minimise site disturbance involve soil compaction. SCHEDULE
Protect and preserve natural drainage system. Soil compaction should not be done at Phasing/ Staging
Map and provide protection for native soil & protected areas.
natural vegetative area. Establish phases of construction within the
Minimise excavation work zone.
Provide fencing from the existing tree canopy Minimise excavation at critical zone Develop sequence of construction and
Limit clearing & grading to road, utilities, area. methods to be used within the phases,.
building pad, landscape areas & the minimal Use minimal excavation foundation
additional areas needed to maneuver Prepare a schedule for earth moving &
system to reduce grading. building construction activities.
equipment
Limit accessibility
Existing trees Schedule and phase grading & earthmoving
Trees or woody vegetation should be operation to expose the smallest practical area
Install signs to identify and explain the use cut rather than push over with for the shortest possible time.
and management of protected areas. equipment Plan efficient sequencing of construction
Limit construction access to one route, if Prevent wounds to the tree trunk & phases to reduce equipment activities &
feasible. timber. potential damage to protected area.
Locate access where future roads & utility Restrict trenching Timing
corridors will be placed.
Restrict trenching at sensitive area. Schedule large disturbance activities during
Provide site plan
Equipment dry season.
Area of the site to be used Start clearing, grading & heavy construction
Staging areas To reduce degree & depth of activities during the driest month.
Storage areas (material/stockpile) compaction, use equipment with the
least ground pressure to finish task. Reduce time soil left disturbed (within 14
Building site days)

Figure 4.3 Description for the WP3-Construction Planning Theoretical Framework

4.7 Relationship between Cleaner Production and Lean Production (Clean-Lean) Approach

Control at source concept such as Cleaner Production proposes an alternative approach to manage

environmental issues by preventing or limiting the occurrence of the pollutant (UNEP, 1996). Nonetheless,

limited studies have been found to incorporate this concept, especially for sediment pollution and

construction in general. Similarly, lean production is a concept that addresses problems at its source but it

was established to improve production-related issues. In general, both lean production and cleaner

production concept have been created to fulfill different goals but the collation of both aspects could

potentially benefit both production and environmental performance (Degani and Cardoso, 2002). For

example, improving inefficient activities in the production line has reduced the level of carbon emission in

the study done by Wu and Low (2012). However, limited studies were found to combine both concepts.

This creates a new research opportunity for investigating the possibility of integrating both concepts to

80
benefit the earthwork operation from a production and environmental standpoint (the latter refers to

sediment pollution).

In recent years, lean has been combined with green as the focus on sustainability soars within the

construction industry. The relevance has been established as the environmental impact of processes could

be traced back to its inefficiencies (Cabello Eras et al., 2013). The call to integrate lean with the

environment has been intense with researches from different industries advocating for the move (Bergmiller

and McWright, 2009; Martnez et al., 2009 and Lapinski et al., 2006). However, the green-lean integration

might not necessarily address the issue of source reduction or prevention per se as the term green

represents a more general perspective of managing the environmental effect (Baines et al., 2012). As an

example in construction, green construction could involve strategies such as using energy-efficient

equipment and recycling of waste that has already been produced (Govenor, 2008), rather than to prevent

the occurrence of waste at the first instance. In addition to that, it is quite difficult to distinguish a specific

definition for green as the term is broad and could relay different meaning to different person (Zaini and

Endut, 2014).

On the other hand, CP is a focused and specific environmental concept that emphasizes on source

reduction without affecting the production aspect (UNEP, 1996). Similarly, LP also emphasizes on waste

reduction but from a production standpoint where the focus is to reduce the sources of waste (Aziz and

Hafez, 2013). Hence, lean and clean could provide a good platform for integration that benefits the

production and environmental dimensions with emphasis on source reduction. Nonetheless, the

integration between lean and clean is still at its infancy as both concepts have been conceived for different

reasons but has the potential to complement each other well (Degani and Cardoso, 2002). In their study,

Wu and Low (2013) have reduced and achieved low-carbon emission in pre-cast concrete production by

eliminating Non-Value Adding activities in the production line. The lean principles applied in the study have

promoted the search for ineffective and inefficient activities that does not entail high investment cost. By

analyzing flow and energy consumption in an organization, avenues to identify emissions using source

reduction strategies in the production process could be done. Degani and Cardoso (2002) also proposed a

set of clean construction, a combination of CP and LP values in order to meet the environmental demands

81
while respecting production goals from a lean perspective. Therefore, the clean-lean concept should go go

hand-in-hand to improve both the production and environmental dimensions (Degani and Cardoso, 2002).

4.7.1 Integrated Cleaner Production (CP) and Lean Production (LP)

An integrative literature review has been conducted to recognize the fundamental concepts of Cleaner

Production (CP) and Lean Production (LP). The fundamental concepts have been extracted based on the

content analysis procedure proposed by Elo and Kyngas (2008) and is reflected in Table 4.5, along with

the cited references. From the analysis, 12 goals have been derived with some goals mutually applicable

for both concepts (shown in the shaded column) and some exclusive to the particular concept (non-shaded

column). Thus, it is apparent that there are similarities and differences between LP and CP that suggest for

further exploration.

Table 4.5 Relationship between Clean and Lean

LEAN FUNDAMENTAL VALUE OF LEAN CLEAN


AND CLEAN
Reduced time Reduced waste/ emission Source reduction

ENVIRONMENT AND
1,3,8 1,2,5,7,9,11,12,13,14 11,12,13,14

PRODUCTION
PRODUCTION

Flow Reduced cost Modify production processes/


1 2,11,12,13,14 product
11,12
Increased quality Continuous improvement Reduced risk to human and
2,5,7 2,8,11,12,15 environment
Customer Long term philosophy 12,13,14,15
satisfaction 8,11
5,7 Improved technology and innovative
ideas
11,14,7
Cited References: 1)Ohno (1988); 2)Womack et al. (1990); 3)Monden (1993); 4)Womack and Jones (1996);
5)Katayama and Bennett (1996); 6)Spear and Bowen (1999); 7)Shah and Ward (2003); 8)Liker (2004); 9)Hines et
al. (2004); 10)Bhasin and Burcher (2006); 11)US EPA (1998); 12)UNEP (1996); 13)Fresner (1998); 14)UNIDO
(2002) and 15)Hilson (2003).

Referring to Table 4.5, the application of LP and CP could address mutual goals such as reduced

waste/ emission, reduced cost, continuous improvement, long term philosophy and use of innovative

technology and ideas. However, an integration that is based solely on similarities will deprive the real

meaning of LP and CP and could misrepresent the concepts if the differences are being ignored. Hence,

further discussion will detail the differences found between both concepts. LP has goals that differ from CP,

which consist of time reduction, flow in processes, increase quality and customer satisfaction where all

attributes aim to improve the production performance. On the other hand, CPs exclusive attributes are

82
source reduction, process or product modification and reducing risk to the environment where those

attributes aim to simultaneously improve both production and environmental performance (UNEP, 1996).

Even though CP has provided the basis of improving both dimensions of production and environment, the

environmentally driven concept lacks the technique to address the production aspect from the perspective

of process modification. It is common for CP to rely on technological change (Neto et al., 2013) but

fundamentally, CP is not all about technology and should start from the basis of improving the current

processes. On the other hand, LP has been established solely to improve the production aspect and has

been long-practiced to improve production processes in various sectors (Womack et al., 1990). Technically,

lean could act as a function to enhance clean and the relationship is shown in a Venn diagram given in

Figure 4.3. The proposed integration is expected to address all the mutual and different goals derived from

both concepts.

The proposed integration between LP and CP is further shown in Figure 4.3 where it contains two

components of integration, which are: 1) fundamental goals and 2) characteristics (principles and tools).

Based on the fundamental goals of each concept, the goal of modifying processes from CP could be parked

under LP due to the production nature of the attribute (Liker, 2004). The technique or approach for process

modification could be conducted by grounding it to the LP concept as the concept has well-established set

of principles and tools (Womack and Jones, 1996). Process modification will blend along with other LP

goals such as flow in processes and reduced process time that provides increased quality that satisfies

customers. Apart from that, process modification that is to be absorbed and improved using LP tools and

techniques will also ensure the attainment of other CP goals which are source reduction that leads to

reduced risk to the environment (UNEP, 1996). A simple analogy for this relationship is when duration of

the earthwork operation is shortened by the use of LP, rainfall occurrence could be reduced, consequently

reducing the risk of site water pollution (Department of Environmental Resources, 1999). Therefore, LP

could be used to assist CP in achieving the goals of environment and production, consequently addressing

its own production goals. Ultimately, lean will enable clean.

83
CLEAN

LEAN

CLEAN GOALS
Modify processes Source reduction; Reduced risk to human and environment

Clean-Lean Characteristics (Principles and tools)


Waste elimination/ process efficiency 1,2,3,8,9,10,13,12,11
Trace error/ root cause/5 Whys 1,2,13,5,8
Flow Direct/better communication 2,6,8,13
Process mapping/ VSM 10,4,12
Minimum inventory 1,2,3,11
Stream lined/modified processes 7,8,12,13
Reduced time Reliable technology 8,14
Skilled and motivated workforce, 2,3,8,7,5,13
teamwork
People development 8,13,14,13
Increased quality Reduce cost 3,9,11
Perfection/ continuous improvement/ 1,4,7,8,10,3,12
Kaizen
Scientific method of improvement 6,12,13
Customer satisfaction 5S/ Housekeeping 1,2,3,10,8,12,13,11,14
Total productive maintenance (TPM)/ 10,7,11
Preventive maintenance
Cultural/ attitude changes 10,14
Process capability measurement 7,13
Authors: 1)Ohno (1988); 2)Womack et al. (1990); 3)Monden (1993);
4)Womack and Jones (1996); 5)Katayama and Bennett (1996); 6)Spear and
Bowen (1999); 7)Shah and Ward (2003); 8)Liker (2004); 9)Hines et al.
(2004); 10)Bhasin and Burcher (2006); 11)US EPA (1998); 12)UNEP (1996);
13)Fresner (1998); 14)UNIDO (2002) and 15)Hilson (2003).
LEAN GOALS

Figure 4.4 Complementary Functions of Lean and Clean

In addition to that, LP and CP also consist of similar characteristics such as principles and tools.

Figure 4.3 shows the mutual tools and principles of both concepts, which are extracted from the cited

references. The dissimilar tools such as standardization and pull system in LP and pollution prevention and

on-site reuse in CP are not provided in the figure as it could be referred to the individual LP and CP

references given in Table 3. Similar tools and principles could be used to enable the implementation of a

clean-lean method. However, it is not necessary to only utilize similar tools and practices since lean

functions to enhance clean. Therefore, any lean tools or practices could be utilized to support the

84
achievement of the expected goals where LP provides an avenue to support the preventive requirement

of CP through improvement in processes.

4.8 Conclusion

This chapter has provided the conceptual frameworks for the integration of construction

management with site water pollution prevention approach at two levels in construction, which are the

planning and operational level. At the planning level, the conceptual framework integrates construction

planning with water pollution prevention practices, WP3-Construction Planning. For the operational level, a

conceptual framework was established by integrating concepts of Lean Production and Cleaner Production,

Clean-Lean. Both framework functions to simultaneously fulfill the functions of production and

environmental requirement at different levels of construction. The theoretical based conceptual framework

will be validated and demonstrated of its applicability in subsequent chapters.

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CHAPTER 5
INDUSTRY ENHANCED INTEGRATION OF CONSTRUCTION PLANNING WITH

WATER POLLUTION PREVENTION PRACTICES FRAMEWORK

This chapter has been extracted from:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), A Cleaner Production-Pollution Prevention Based

Framework for Construction Site Induced Water Pollution. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for

Review.

5.1 Introduction

Industrial input forms an essential aspect in making sure a theoretical based framework is functional from

a practical perspective. Therefore, this chapter is an enhancer to part of the finding from the previous

chapter. The previous chapter has provided the conceptual integration for the planning stage by integrating

construction planning and water pollution prevention practices. A theoretical framework would demand for

further verification through industrial input to find its applicability. Following Jabareens proposed steps

(Refer to Section 4.5) for a conceptual framework, this chapter acts to complete step no. 5 and 6 where it

represents validating and rethinking of the framework. The aim of this chapter is to provide a theoretical-

practical framework of integration between construction planning and water pollution prevention practices.

The sole objective of this chapter is to develop an industry enhanced CP-P2 based water pollution

preventive practices (WP3) with construction planning elements framework.

5.2 Research Method to Identify Industry Input on the Integrated Framework for Construction

Planning and Water Pollution Prevention Practices

This chapter will generally use the qualitative method of attaining input from experts to verify the proposed

theoretical framework given in Section 4.6, Chapter 4. The exploratory nature of this research is verified

using semi-structured interview. Table 5.1 provides the simplified research method applied in this chapter.

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Table 5.1 Research Method for Chapter 5

Objective Addressed Data Collection Method Data Analysis

To develop an industry enhanced CP-P2 based Semi-structured interview Deductive content


water pollution preventive practices (WP3) with analysis
construction planning elements framework.

Fulfilment of step no.5 and 6 of Jabareen (2009) for conceptual framework is given in this chapter.

For step no. 5 which is verification, this stage gathers industry input on the theoretical framework, which is

portrayed in this chapter. Besides that, Jabareen (2009) proposed that validation methods for qualitative

based conceptual framework could include presenting the idea at conferences and seminars to receive

feedback. In fulfilling that, the framework has been presented at the 21st Annual Conference of the

International Group for Lean Construction (Belayutham and Gonzalez, 2013). Accounting for the final step

(Step 6) proposed by Jabareen (2009), comparisons were made between outputs from the interview with

the theoretical framework proposed in Chapter 4. Revisions have been made according to the new insights

so that the framework could serve its purpose in practice.

Further steps to establish validity and reliability within a qualitative research, as proposed by Yin

(2009) is given as follows: 1) chain of evidence; 2) reviewed by key informants and 3) single research

exploratory design, which were all satisfied and reported throughout this study. The study has fulfilled the

first step through having evidence sourced from theory through the use of different sources such as

journals, conference articles as well as governmental guidelines of different departments from different

countries. The second step has been accomplished by providing the theoretical framework to the

respondents for their comments. The third step has been fulfilled where the concern of this framework is

solely on identifying the relationship between construction planning and water pollution prevention

approaches.

5.2.1 Semi-structured Interview

The aim of this chapter is to establish an industrial-enhanced conceptual framework based on the inputs

from construction practitioners. In order to achieve this, a semi-structured interview has been employed to

allow probing of more information from interviewees (King, 1994). The goal of this interview is to attain the

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perspective of interviewees and to explore how the framework could be adapted into practice (Amaratunga

et al., 2002). The selection of potential respondents have been done using purposive sampling where

judgmental sampling has been applied and the number of respondents is less imperative than the criteria

applied in selecting them (Marshall, 1996). A total of 20 respondents (environmental consultant, local

authority, contractors) have been identified and selected based on their experiences in the field of study,

especially in relation to construction site water pollution to ensure reliable data is obtained. Similar number

of respondents were also chosen by Fernie et al. (2003) for their exploratory study on supply chain

management in construction. Since Bowen (2005) indicated that interview is evaluated from the richness

of its information rather than number of interviews, the contribution of interview is presumed to incline

towards providing quality rather than quantity. The audio recorded face-to-face interviews took

approximately an hour to complete. The data was later transcribed and analyzed.

The semi-structured interview questions were based on findings from the previous chapter where

practitioners are queried on each elements of construction planning and how it could relate to water

pollution prevention practices. They have been asked on the established relationship between the sub and

major categories of WP3 and its relevance with the construction planning categories. The respondents were

also given the proposed theoretical framework to comment on.

5.2.2 Description of Respondents

Respondents for his study have been selected based on several requirements. The criteria used to select

the respondents are as follows: 1) Different nature of work: Respondents are representative of different

organizations in construction, such as the local authority, consultant and contractor; 2) Knowledge in the

subject: respondents are experienced and well-verse in the subject of construction site water pollution or

erosion and sediment during construction; and 3) Years of experience: Respondents have a minimum of 5

year experience in the field of construction. The respondents details are given in Table 5.2, where they

have been categorized according to their specialization, portraying their nature of work. Respondents from

local council were placed under legislator (L), environmental management consultants under environmental

specialist (ES) category whilst constructors (C) were people who manage common/ general construction.

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The average years of experiences among the respondents are approximately 15 years with several having

over 20 years of experience.

Table 5.2 Details of Respondents

Respondent Organization Position Years of Area of specialization


experiences
L1 Local Technical specialist 5 Storm water management
Authority
L2 Local Technical specialist >7 Storm water management
authority
L3 Local Technical specialist 20 Storm water management
authority
ES1 Consultant Director 26 Water consultant engineer
ES2 Consultant Senior environmental >13 Environmental engineer
engineer/ Director
ES3 Consultant Civil engineer 28 Storm water management
ES4 Consultant Director >6 Land use: LID, storm water,
erosion and sediment
control.
ES5 Consultant Civil engineer 12 Environmental management
ES6 Consultant Project manager 7 Environmental
ES7 Consultant Senior designer 6 Environmental
ES8 Consultant Civil engineer 12 Environmental
ES9 Consultant Civil engineer 9 Erosion and sediment control
ES10 Consultant Civil engineer 14 Environmental
ES11 Consultant Chartered professional >30 Environmental management
engineer
C1 Contractor Project manager 12 General construction
C2 Contractor Quantity surveyor 7 General construction
C3 Contractor Contract manager 10 Infrastructure construction
C4 Consultant Project manager 30 Construction project
management
C5 Consultant Project manager 6 Construction project
management
C6 Consultant Project manager 41 Construction project
management

Category of specialization:
Legislator (L) : 3
Environmental specialist (ES): 11
Constructors (C) : 6

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5.2.3 Deductive Data Analysis

Deductive content analysis has been applied for this stage of work as it is most useful for retesting existing

data, categories, models, etc. In this case, the analysis was adapted to reconfirm and evaluate the proposed

framework from the previous chapter through analyzing input form the semi-structured interviews. The steps

involved in the generation of categorization matrix areas follows: 1) Interviews fully transcribed; 2)

Categories based on theoretical framework; 3) Data coded according to categories; 4) Rank of frequencies

according to the similarities of codes representing its respective categories; 5) Quantitative descriptive data

that provides categorization matrix.

5.3 Industrial Input on the Significance of WP3 as part of Construction Planning

The respondents feedbacks are discussed in three parts by following the major and sub categories of

WP3-Construction Planning. Table 5.3 illustrates the opinions from respondents on the functions of WP3

and its relation to construction planning. The feedbacks were assigned as having significant or

insignificant relation, depending on whether the respondents found all sub-categories to be linked, partially

linked or not linked. It is necessary to highlight here that the term significant is to portray the extent of

linkage and relevance the WP3 have with construction planning. Therefore, the use of the term should not

be likened with statistically significant as no statistical analysis were attempted in this study. Percentages

were provided based on categories of respondents, under the column heading categorically. In general,

the feedbacks are satisfactory to show that the functions of WP3 are indeed relevant and related to

construction planning components. Further description on the interviews are given in subsequent sections.

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Table 5.3 Significance of WP3 as part of Construction Planning

Relation with WP3


Partially No Construction
Specialist Linked Categorically No Linkage Categorically Planning
Linked opinion
Components
Significant Insignificant
Legislator 3 100% 0% Construction
ES 11 100% 0% schedule
Constructor 6 100% 0%
Total 20 0
Percentage 100% 0%

Legislator 2 1 100% 0% Construction


ES 4 6 91% 1 9% Method
Constructor 2 1 50% 1 2 50%
Total 16 4
Percentage 80% 20%

Legislator 3 100% 0% Construction Site


ES 8 73% 3 27% layout
Constructor 3 50% 1 2 50%
Total 14 6
Percentage 70% 30%

5.3.1 Construction Schedule

100% of the respondents thought that construction schedule is linked to WP3 and when planned and

managed properly, it could contribute to prevent/ minimize runoff and erosion. The criticality of phasing and

timing was relevant because major factors for excessive runoff at construction site are large open area and

prolonged duration of soil being exposed, besides other issues such as runoff from other catchments (Ab

Rahman et al., 2010). Phasing allows only small areas to be opened at a time, worked on and stabilized

before moving to the next area (Claytor, 2000). The importance of timing has also been emphasized as

earthworks done during the dry season is much preferred as compared to rainy season (Goodemote, 2005).

According to most interviewees, current construction schedule practices focus more on the

common performance measures i.e. time, resources and cost without thoughts given to the environmental

aspect. There were other deficiencies highlighted in the current scheduling approaches that worsen the

situation with water pollution prevention. ES2 reported that schedules were mismanaged with critical

materials such as stabilizers not available before a storm. The practice for site to be opened at one go was

also common, as a result of being too optimistic with work completion without considering unforeseen

circumstances. Nonetheless, C3 claimed to practice opening small portions of the work because it is

unnecessary to open larger working area than they could cope with. C3 also added that smaller areas of

work are also beneficial in terms of health and safety as it is easier to manage and control leading to reduced

100
risk of mishap. Additional suggestions were also raised by participants which involve sequencing the

installation of critical control structures, especially clean water diversion. The deficiency in the sequence of

installation may result in additional runoff flooding from other catchment, on top of the runoff from the current

site.

Overall, all respondents agreed on the functions of schedule in preventing water pollution. In terms

of applicability, respondents suggested for staging to be financially worthwhile. ES6, ES7, ES8 and ES10

claimed that they have applied staging in their project with the intention of saving cost and not pollution

prevention. The reason given was that larger open area requires larger control system that involves larger

investment. Hence, the application of proper staging and timing within the construction schedule can

simultaneously provide benefits in terms of cost and water pollution prevention. This framework has

provided the respondents with a new perspective on the use of staging that encourages the notion of killing

two birds with one stone.

5.3.2 Construction Method

80% of the respondents found that either all or parts of the sub-categories in WP3 have practical relation

with construction method. Categorically, 100% legislators found all sub-categories of WP3 work well with

construction method planning followed by 91% ES and 50% constructors.

In terms of practice, respondents emphasized the importance of minimizing excavation by exposing

smaller parts in order to alleviate runoff issues, especially at sensitive areas. Most respondents agreed that

mass excavation will induce runoff due to large open areas, especially with the involvement of cut and fill

over the entire site. Nonetheless, there were contrasting opinions from ES6, ES7 and ES8 due to

misunderstanding that excavation involves only the depth and not the extend (area) of excavation. In terms

of method, ES2 agreed that a switch from raft slab system to pile foundation could reduce the extent of

excavation. However, after receiving feedback from other respondents, it was found that foundations were

commonly designed by structural engineers and those structural decisions were beyond contractors

influence.

Respondents also agreed that compaction activities have impact on elevating runoff, particularly

from the theoretical point of view. The equation used to compute quantity of runoff includes a variable that

101
represents the amount of rainfall that could soak into the ground (infiltration) for a particular surface. In this

case, smooth compacted surface may have very low rate of infiltration, consequently creating larger surface

runoff. Nonetheless, L2 mentioned that the impact is more prominent in long term (operational) and not

short term basis (during construction). Also, ES4 and ES5 found this practice to be less relevant from the

practical stand point as construction sites were usually required to abide a certain compaction standard,

especially in highway construction. Typically, this measure does reduce runoff but not applicable to

all/whole construction sites. Relatively, movement of heavy equipment can also increase soil compaction

in theory but in practice, it does not matter much as common areas of construction will eventually be

compacted. Most respondents agreed that restriction in trenching as well as care for existing trees is

essential in reducing site runoff. Accordingly, L3, ES2, ES3 and ES10 suggested besides trees, vegetative/

top cover should be retained where feasible.

Besides the measures given in the framework, the respondents also provided additional

suggestions to enrich the functionality of construction method in reducing runoff. Among the suggestions

provided were provision for hard fill areas at the entrance, contouring, tracking transverse to flow direction,

surface roughening, lengthen flow path and zig-zag type of flow path. Those suggestions are common

control practices that merely reduce the intensity of runoff but do not prevent the issue at its source. Also,

some managerial solutions were also proposed i.e. to increase money allocated to contractors in provision

for storm water control system and a fairer method of contract measurement by using measure and value

as opposed to lump sum contract for earthwork.

5.3.3 Construction Site Layout

70% of the respondents found that either all or parts of WP3 relates to construction site layout planning.

Categorically, 100% legislators convinced that all sub-categories of WP3 are linked to construction site

layout, followed by 73% consultants and 50% constructors.

Most respondents had strong opinions on sensitivity of a site. They believe sensitive areas such as

wetlands and steep slopes should be retained and if possible, preserved by not making any alteration.

Respondents also mentioned the importance of planning the site layout by organizing access route and

machinery tracks so that site workers can be certain of the accessibility and areas to be protected.

102
Nonetheless, some deficiencies were observed in the current system that may impact the WP3. L1

viewed that occasionally, high risk areas were not laid out towards the top of site. L2 thought that site plans

should evolve along with the constantly changing topography, especially during earthwork. By having pre-

planned and evolving site plan, areas that require preservation as well as limits and caution signs can be

provided in real time, subsequently reducing unplanned or unnecessary land openings. Shortcomings

beyond contractors control were also highlighted, i.e. inefficient communication between parties, inefficient

contracting system such as Design-Bid-Build (DBB) and constructability issues.

5.4 Theoretical-Practical Based Framework

The main idea of integration was to instill prevention of runoff and erosion through seamless integration

with construction by assimilating the elements of WP3 into Construction Planning. The initial theoretical

framework is being enhanced with practical insights from interview conducted with industrial practitioners.

From the process, construction schedule is found to be the most significant construction planning

component in preventing runoff and erosion that potentially shapes the direction of future research. Other

findings were also found to be intriguing, i.e. management, contractual, communication and constructability

issues that may have indirect impact on WP3 that could further be recognized as distal factors of water

pollution (Fuertes et al. 2013). The following discussion is focused on the practical insights used to establish

the theoretical-practical driven WP3-Construction Planning framework.

Construction Schedule: Under this theme, the concern on sequencing has been raised where sequence of

activities plays a major role in preventing runoff and sediment. Besides that, critical materials such as

mulches should be available ahead of a forecasted rainfall in order to reduce surface erosion. Hence, the

function of sequencing will be added to the final framework with some shift in the practices and the addition

of critical material acquisition.

Construction Method: During the interview, the term minimizing excavation has created some

misunderstanding among respondents. Hence, in the revised framework, additional description has been

added, changing the original term to minimize excavation area. Under the same heading, use minimal

excavation foundation system to reduce grading was removed as it was perceived to be under the design

phase in construction. Whilst equipment selection and compaction have strong theoretical connections in

103
preventing runoff, in practice, it is deemed to be not viable. This is due to the fact that common construction

require certain equipment and standard of compaction to be fulfilled for a firm foundation. Therefore,

connections with compaction and equipment selection were removed from the final framework. For the

component removing existing trees, it will be changed to trees and top covers. Findings from this study

also prompted other issues (management and contractual) which are beyond the scope of this study but

essential as a holistic solution for the whole system.

Construction Site Layout: A practical suggestion was to include regular plan updates into the site plan

category. Construction site, especially earthworks involve constant changes where regular updates could

keep workers and contractors well informed of sites progress and control measures that should be taken.

The theoretical-practical framework of WP3-Construction Planning in Figure 5.1, with its description

in Table 5.5 is the industry enhanced version of the theoretical framework (Figure 4.1 refers). The

theoretical dimension has been established through the literature. The practical dimension was then added

into the theoretical framework using the input from semi-structured interview with the industry players. The

changes in the revised version (shown in italic in Figure 5.1 and Table 5.5) have been discussed in previous

paragraphs, with minimal changes to the overall structure of the framework.

WP3 -Construction Planning

Construction Planning Construction Site Layout Construction


Schedule Method

Phasing/ Protect sensitive Minimize excavation


Staging areas area
WP3
Timing Minimize site Trees and top covers
Sequencing disturbance Restrict trenching
Limit accessibility
Provide site plan
Figure 5.1 Theoretical-Practical WP3-Construction Planning Framework

104
Table 5.5 Description for the Theoretical-Practical WP3-Construction Planning Framework

Category Sub-category Practices


Schedule Phasing/ Staging Establish phases of construction within the work zone.
Prepare a schedule for earth moving & building construction activities.
Schedule and phase grading & earthmoving operation to expose the
smallest practical area for the shortest possible time.
Timing Schedule large disturbance activities during dry season.
Start clearing, grading & heavy construction activities during the driest
month.
Reduce time soil left disturbed.
Sequencing Sequence critical activities to prevent runoff from other site.
Develop sequence of construction and methods to be used within the
phases.
Plan efficient sequencing of construction phases to reduce equipment
activities & potential damage to protected area.
Critical material acquisition.
Protect sensitive areas Clear off any siting of facilities on sensitive areas such as easily compacted
soil, natural preservation area and drainage channels.
Site Layout Layout areas that do not require removal of trees.
Reduce imperviousness.
Minimize site disturbance Protect and preserve natural drainage system.
Map and provide protection for native soil & natural vegetative area.
Provide fencing from the existing tree canopy
Limit clearing & grading to road, utilities, building pad, landscape areas &
the minimal additional areas needed to maneuver equipment.
Limit accessibility Install signs to identify and explain the use and management of protected
areas.
Limit construction access to one route, if feasible.
Locate access where future roads & utility corridors will be placed.
Provide site plan Area of the site to be used.
Staging areas.
Storage areas (material/stockpile).
Building site.
Regular plan updates.
Method Minimize excavation area Minimize excavation area, especially at critical zone.

Trees and top covers Trees or woody vegetation should be cut rather than push over with
equipment
Prevent wounds to the tree trunk & timber.
Restrict trenching Restrict trenching at sensitive area.

5.5 Conclusion

The findings suggest that WP3 is related to Construction Planning components and the seamless integration

between both element leads towards the establishment of CP-P2 (prevention-based) site water pollution

strategies. Theoretically, the framework has contributed in adapting the CP-P2 concept by integrating two

distinct elements (runoff and erosion) into a single entity termed WP3. In addition to that, the assimilation

between WP3-Construction Planning has provided a new perspective to seamlessly manage production

processes with pollution prevention. Hence, the proposed framework has filled the gap of knowledge within

the area of study where limited works were found on combining the distinctive elements of water pollution

105
prevention with construction planning as most works focused on mitigation. This framework could serve as

a methodology to seamlessly integrate any other environmental concerns into construction planning based

on the CP-P2 concept. However, strong similarities should first be established between the chosen

environmental concern and construction planning before it could be proposed as an integrated entity.

In practice, the established framework could benefit different parties in construction. For

developers, this integration involves non-structural approaches that could eventually reduce the

dependence on structural facilities, leading to cost savings, as stated by some of the respondents in the

interview. As for contractors, the integrated framework allows them to manage construction and runoff-

erosion prevention at the same time where they could simultaneously plan their work with additional benefit

in preventing pollution. This may reduce their work load in preparing for erosion and sediment control

facilities. For the local authorities, this framework could act as a guide in updating the current runoff and

erosion sediment control handbooks towards promoting prevention approaches. Ultimately, the framework

benefits the people and environment as a whole by preventing and reducing the occurrence of water

pollution as well as subsequent issues that may arise from the pollution.

In summary, this chapter has provided a prevention-based solution to manage production and the

environmental factor at the construction planning stage. Only solving the problem at construction planning

is not holistic if the operational stage is not being looked at. Hence, proceeding chapters will provide the

operational based solution using clean-lean method to provide an environmental and production measures

for during construction strategy.

5.6 References

Ab Rahman, N. N. N., Omar, F. M., Ab Kadir, M. O., 2010. Environmental aspects and impacts of

construction industry. In: El-Nemr, A. (Ed.) Impact, Monitoring and Management of Environmental

Pollution, Nova Science Publishers Inc, New York: USA.

Amaratunga, D., Baldry, D., Sarshar, M., Newton, R., 2002. Quantitative and qualitative research in the

built environment: application of mixed research approach. Work Study 51, 17-31.

106
Belayutham, S., Gonzlez, V., 2013. Integrating lean into stormwater runoff management: a theoretical

exploration. In: 21st Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction 2013,

Fortaleza: Brazil, 29 July - 2 August 2013, 835-844.

Bowen, G. A., 2005. Preparing a qualitative research-based dissertation: lessons learned. The Qualitative

Report 10, 208-222.

Claytor, R., 2000. Practical tips for construction site phasing. Watershed Protection Techniques 2(3): 413-

417.

Fernie, S., Green, S. D., Weller, S. J., Newcombe, R., 2003. Knowledge sharing: context, confusion and

controversy. International Journal of Project Management 21, 177-187.

Fuertes, A., Casals, M., Gangolells, M., Forcada, N., Macarulla, M., Roca, X., 2013. An environmental

impact causal model for improving the environmental performance of construction processes. Journal

of Cleaner Production 52, 425-437.

Goodemote, G. J., 2005. Keeping it real. Public Works 136, 56-58.

Jabareen, Y., 2009. Building a conceptual framework: philosophy, definitions, and procedure. International

Journal of Qualitative Methods 8, 49-62.

King, N., 1994. The qualitative research interview. In: Cassell C. M., Symon, G., (Eds), Qualitative Methods

in Organizational Research: A Practical Guide. SAGE, London, 1436.

Marshall, M. N., 1996. Sampling for qualitative research. Family Practice 13, 522-525.

Yin, R. K., 2009. Case study research: design and methods, Fourth Ed. SAGE Publications, USA.

107
CHAPTER 6

CLEAN-LEAN APPROACH TO MANAGE THE DISTAL FACTOR (ADMINISTRATIVE

PROCESSES) OF CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER POLLUTION

This chapter has been extracted from:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), Clean-Lean Administrative Processes. Journal of

Cleaner Production, Submitted for Review.

6.1 Introduction

Chapter 3 has earlier established the theoretical framework for integrating cleaner production and lean

production concept by developing a clean-lean approach. Clean-lean approach is an operational level

management of the production and environmental factors in construction. This chapter functions to apply

the conceptually integrated concept to address the distal factors of construction site water pollution, as

recognized in Chapter 1 and 2. The findings in this chapter could provide two different verifications, which

are: 1) data verification in regards to distal factors found in construction water pollution and 2) clean-lean

approach verification conceptualized in Chapter 3. In particular, this chapter will utilize a clean-lean

integration to tackle the distal factors of administrative processes towards positively improving the risk of

site sediment pollution as well as the production factor during construction. Lean based approach such as

lean tools and principles will be integrated with water pollution indicator to improve the administrative

processes that will subsequently benefit the production and environment factor of the construction.

Furthermore, the applicability of CLD to discover core causes, as shown in Chapter 2 will be used here to

enhance the functionalities of the developed approach by narrowing down the root cause of waste as a

subsequent point for improvement. The aim of this chapter is to improve the administrative (distal) process

inefficiencies, simultaneously enhancing also the production and environmental performance through the

use of Causal Loop Diagram, Lean and Cleaner Production concept. The objectives of this study are given

as follows:

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1) To provide an analytical framework of the cause-effect relationship between administrative process

inefficiencies, lean waste, production (time) and the environmental (sediment pollution) variable using a

system dynamic tool called Causal Loop Diagram (CLD).

2) To develop a CLD enhanced Value Stream-Process Map (VS-PM) that functions to improve both the

production and environmental variable in a construction project.

3) To develop a clean-lean solution to improve the administrative processes, consequently improving also

the production and environmental factors during construction.

This chapter employs a case study to portray the functionalities of a clean-lean approach towards achieving

the established aim and objectives.

6.2 The Side-Lined Administrative Processes in Construction Performance Improvement

Lean thinking is a process-focused performance improvement concept that originated from the

manufacturing sector and has been adapted and adopted into various sectors including construction

(Womack and Jones, 1996b). Typically, construction consist of two different type of processes, which are

production, also known as construction processes that produce output and administrative processes that

do not produce output but necessary in supporting the production (Garvin, 1998). Administrative processes

often function to produce information that allows the production processes to take place. In the aspect of

improvement, lean thinking has mostly been used to improve construction operations performance by

enhancing the effectiveness of production and accordingly, the environment can benefit (Rosenbaum et al.,

2012). However, the extensive focus on the production aspect has caused administrative processes to be

side-lined (Koskela and Blviken, 2013). Inefficient administrative processes are rarely seen as a significant

factor that could influence the production variable, let alone the environmental variable during construction.

However, Alsehaimi and Koskela (2008) stressed that inefficient administrative processes is the primary

cause of delay during construction. Uncertainties in administrative performance such as long sub-

processes may cause certain information to be released late in a process, consequently creating delay to

subsequent processes (Browning, 1998). The criticalities of administrative processes have been

underestimated due to its distant and indirect relationship with the production and environmental variable

during construction (Belayutham et al., 2016). Limited research has also been conducted to observe the

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aforementioned relationship. The limitation in recognizing the cause-effect relationship between the distinct

variables may stem from the use of linear approaches in visualizing the linkage that disregards the systemic

view of the whole system. This scenario has prompted Koskela and Blviken (2013) to question the

effectiveness of the current improvement approaches that segregate administration and production

processes. In order to implement long-lasting improvements that incorporate the entire system, flow in

processes should be observed and understood, rather than treating administration and production

processes in a discrete fashion (Arleroth and Kristensson, 2011).

Cause and effect are often separated in terms of time and space, where the resulting solutions are

often short-term based and may create larger problems in the long run (Atwater and Pittman, 2006).

Similarly, neglecting inefficiencies in administrative processes may prompt for solutions that are merely

control rather than prevention-based to improve the production or environmental performance during

construction. Short-term solutions for the production aspect of time delay can commonly be observed

through extra working time with requirements for additional manpower (Mochal, 2008). From an

environmental standpoint, mitigating facilities are commonly implemented as a short-term fix but the

approach challenges the concept of Cleaner Production (CP) that advocates to identify and solve problem

at its root (Fresner, 1998). In addition, mitigating facilities are often developed in isolation to the production

process itself where the resulting pollutant is controlled by the means of technological improvements

(UNEP, 1996). Little emphasis has been given to understand the mechanism of the environmental

occurrence, further inhibiting the application of prevention-based approaches.

In the case of sediment pollution, the risk of pollution occurrence increases during construction,

especially when earth clearing activities such as earthworks are involved (Ab Rahman et al., 2010).

Sediment pollution is a global issue as sediment could originate from a construction site as small as 0.34

acres (Owens et al., 2000) that is flowed into local rivers, which will then travel through lakes, estuaries and

finally ends at worlds ocean (Walling and Webb, 1996). Incidence of sediment pollution could affect the

aquatic environment as well as the additional requirement of cost and resources for rectification works (Pitt

et al., 2007). Site sediment pollution could occur when a combination of processes take place, i.e. excessive

runoff, erosion and sedimentation. In general, the larger and longer a cleared land is being left open, the

higher the rate and volume of runoff produced, subsequently causing massive erosion of the soil (US EPA,

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1999). Commonly, end-of-pipe solution such as sediment pond functions to temporarily store the site runoff

rather than preventing its occurrence. Regardless of that, construction is prone to unpredictable

circumstances where often, works could get interrupted or delayed due to reasons such as force of nature

as well as human factors. Unnecessary delays during crucial work stage such as earthworks could further

increase the risk of sediment pollution. Man-made factors that could influence the risk of sediment pollution

includes both the operational (proximal) and administrative (distal) factors. In regards to administrative

(distal) processes, which is the subject of this study, redundancies and delays in the administrative process

of communicating information during earthworks (Weese, 2007) could prolong the period land being left

opened, which will risk higher frequency of rainfall occurrence leading to increased risk of sediment pollution

(Ab Rahman et al. 2010). Hence, the reduction in construction time delay due to unnecessary administrative

processes could potentially reduce the risk of sediment pollution (Belayutham et al., 2016). Furthermore,

distal factors are commonly being associated as the core cause of problems where in-depth studies on

these factors could provide holistic benefits from the production and environmental standpoint (McNeill,

1996). Hence, this study proposes that enhancement to administrative processes could improve the

production (time) and environmental measures (sediment pollution) of construction, especially on the

earthworks operation.

6.3 Lean Administration in Construction

Lean thinking has also been applied beyond the production line to include administrative processes, giving

rise to terms such as Lean Office (Tapping, 2005) and Lean Government (US EPA, 2009a). The application

of lean thinking towards improving the administrative process waste in construction can be observed in

processes involving consent (Garrett and Lee, 2010) and variation order (Ndihokubwayo and Haupt, 2010).

However, the studies done on administrative processes in construction are still minimal because the

industry rather invest and improve production related works such as material and building technologies

(Arleroth and Kristensson, 2011). Hence, focus on the production process itself has caused administrative

processes to be side lined (Koskela and Blviken, 2013) and this study intents to propagate changes to the

common perception by highlighting the criticality of managing well the administrative processes.

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In regards to administrative processes in construction, public construction projects have been

slammed with delays and high cost of deliveries that defy the quality standards. Reasons for the poor

performance could be reverted back to lengthy, complex and unpredictable processes involving

government at various administrative levels, local councils, the public, consultants and also contractors

from the private sector (Samset et al., 2006). For example, time for consent approval in the government

sector could almost equal the duration of real value production process such as design and this is

counterproductive, creating the urge to reduce the duration through process improvement (Productivity

Partnership, 2013). Furthermore, the negative impact of lengthy procedures especially in tendering may

cause prices quoted during tendering to be obsolete by the time construction begins (Ssegawa-Kaggwa et

al., 2013). Hence, improvement strategies should include process change by instilling positive improvement

in issues such as organization, duplication of effort and miscommunication (Fresner, 1998).

6.4 Project Background

The case project for this study involves a state owned project of a triple-storey district education office

building within the district of Raub, in the state of Pahang, Malaysia. The traditional system (Design-Bid-

Build) was the choice of procurement for this project. This project that values at approximately RM 7 million

(USD 1.68 million) has an area size of 2.6 hectares. The site has been chosen based on its geographical

location. This site was exposed to the Northeast Monsoon from October to March, which tends to bring

heavy rainfalls during the period. This site was also located close to a river bank (approximately 6 metres

in distance) and created criticality in terms of controlling the sediment produced. In summary, this site was

prone to flood during the rainy season. Also, the social aspect of this site was relevant as adjacent from

this site is a residential area and any sediment spill could create nuisance to the nearby inhabitants. All

those factors made this site particularly critical in terms of sediment pollution and potential prevention

approach would be much preferred rather than relying on the control facilities as the last defence

mechanism.

In regards to the objective of this study on administrative process inefficiencies, the chosen case

project is a public project that has encountered delays during the site clearance and earthwork stage. A

public project has been chosen to be the subject of this study due to the common perception that projects

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administered by the public authority are complicated with lengthy administrative procedures and processes

(Samset et al., 2006). The site clearance stage was particularly selected because this stage would have

the most impervious surfaces which are highly prone to runoff, erosion and sedimentation (Ab Rahman et

al., 2010). Earthworks with large land openings and exposed for long duration poses the highest risk of

sediment pollution (Shaver et al., 2000). Therefore, any work and time delay during that period would

contribute to increase the risk of sediment pollution.

Initially, the project was expected to be completed within 3 years and 8 months. However, time of

completion has been delayed as the contractor was awarded extension of time of 121 days (approx. 4

months) for delays caused by administration as well as unintended operations during earthworks. Reasons

for the extension are described as follows:

After site clearance, the contractor found that on-site soil was insufficient to provide the required

platform level with a shortage of 0.77m and 4720m3 of soil. The awarded contract did not state the

requirement to import soil from off-site, giving way to Variation Order (V.O.). The administrative

process involved for the 4 months delay involves the V.O. application process while the operation

works involve the importing of soil from off-site, time allocation for natural settlement to take place

and the construction of a retaining wall due to the added height of the fill area.

The focus of this study is on the administrative process, i.e. V.O. process. V.O. application process

is commonly known to cause time delays (Bauch, 2004). Delays in the process will subsequently interrupt

the execution of the current and succeeding works, relatively highlighting the importance of this process to

be streamlined (Tapping, 2003). The period of extension has been given for the month of September to

December where the V.O. process occupied almost a month of the timeframe. Due to the geographic factor

of the site that receives heavy rainfall towards the end of the year, it is crucial for any earthworks to be

completed as soon as possible. Nonetheless, contractors are not allowed to continue with any site work

until the V.O. has been approved, as stipulated in the regulation. Since the V.O. application occurred during

earthwork, the time spent waiting for the approval extends the time land is being left opened and this

increases the risk of soil erosion that leads to sediment pollution.

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6.5 Research Phases to Develop Clean-Lean Administrative Processes

This exploratory-based study utilizes qualitative approaches due to the limited research found on improving

administrative processes to benefit the production and environmental variables during construction. It is

necessary to highlight that this study is scoped to improve the macro instead of the micro level processes

in administration. Macro in this aspect relates to viewing processes from a larger perspective and the

interest is for proper restructuring of work processes, rather than the micro aspect that involves functional

details such as internal working processes (Nerenz and Neil, 2001). The scope of study is further justified

with the findings by Wood and Gidado (2008) where organizational aspects of an administration contributes

more to project difficulties, rather than the operative and technological aspect. Table 6.1shows the phases

and workflow for this research. Phase 1 act as the conceptual basis of this study by establishing an

analytical framework of relationship between administrative process waste with construction performance

(production and environmental) variables in the form of a CLD. Then, an improvement approach in the form

of clean-lean will be introduced and demonstrated using a case project.

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Table 6.1 Research Workflow

PHASE WORKFLOW OUTCOME


Literature Review

Database:
Scopus, Google Scholar
Analytical Framework of the
ANALYTICAL FRAMEWORK

Search Subject:
cause-effect relationship
Administrative process inefficiencies, Lean Administration, Lean
between administrative
Management, Causes of site water pollution in relation to time
process inefficiencies, lean
waste, production (time)
PHASE 1

Content Analysis and environmental


(sediment pollution)
variable using a system
Steps by Elo and Kyngas (2008): Literature are being sourced to
identify key terms, allocated into categories, define linkages between dynamic tool called Causal
the categories Loop Diagram (CLD)

Development of CLD (Refer to Section 4.1)

Similar method of data collection and representation is found in


Yuan et al. (2014)
Validation
Stage 1 Current mapping

Sources for production measures

Government standard, Construction site record and document,


Interview, Observation

Sources for environmental measures

Site records and documents, Document from the Department of


Irrigation and Drainage (DID) Malaysia CLD enhanced VS-PM to
improve both the production
and environmental in a
Performance metrics (Refer to 4.4) construction project
CASE STUDY (REFER TO SECTION 4.2)

Production - Time and Project Complexity


Sediment - Rainfall erosivity, R Pollution Factor

Input
VS-PM (Refer to Section 4.3) and CLD
PHASE 2

of the current map

Stage 2 Future Mapping

Elimination of NVA / waste activities

Over processing, waiting, inventory A lean-based solution that


First point of improvement in accordance to the CLD improves the administrative
processes, consequently
Reduce process steps: No. of steps improving also the
production and
environmental factor during
Reduction in production factor: Time construction

Reduction in environment factor: R factor for sediment pollution

VS-PM of Future Map

Verification with project personnel

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6.5.1 Causal Loop Diagram (CLD)

Causal Loop Diagram (CLD) is a qualitative model, established prior to running a simulation that results in

a quantitative model called System Dynamics (Toole, 2005). It is essential to highlight that the CLD derived

in this study is exploratory and qualitative in nature, where the purpose is not for simulation but as an

enhancement for the lean-based tool, VS-PM. Details of CLD have been discussed and can be referred to

in Section 3.5.1. Functions of the CLD in this study is twofold. First, is to provide a systemic view of the

cause-effect relationship between administrative process inefficiencies, lean waste, production and

environmental variable. It is important to stress that the CLD representation is a preliminary finding to relate

administrative process waste with construction performance variables that was not present in previous

studies. Similar to Toole (2005), the intention was not to provide a complex and complete model but to

provide essential variables, sufficient enough to represent the reality and relationship between the

variables. Secondly, the CLD aims to enhance the functionalities of the VS-PM at the analysis stage by

pointing out the root cause of the administrative waste. The second CLD that is built from a case study data

also acts as a validation model for the analytic framework produced in Phase 1. Haslam et al. (2005) and

Gambatese et al. (2008) have validated their conceptual CLD model by mapping the established categories

against a set of real incident. Similarly, Yuan et al. (2014) have also used a case study to illustrate the

validation and application of their proposed model. The CLD for this study has been drawn following the

steps proposed by Kim (1992), given as follows: 1) selection of subjects; 2) key variables within the subject;

3) relationship between the variables with project boundary and level of details.

6.5.2 Case Study

Data from the case is used to produce a VS-PM, which is further complemented with a CLD. Various

methods have been used to collect the data for this study, given as follows: 1) Document reviews-Archival

records (site diary), project documents such as meeting minutes, Request for Information (RFI), project

details and government standards on variation order work procedure. 2) Interviews have been conducted

with public government agency personnel who have been assigned to manage this project. The project

personnel involved consist of a district engineer, engineer, assistant engineer, site based technical assistant

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and administrative staffs. 3) An observation has also been carried out to observe the flow of processes

involved in this case.

6.5.3 Lean Mapping

Waste minimization is the aim of an organization that plans to increase the productivity and efficiency of its

processes. The initial step to minimize waste is to identify waste within the system. Waste in production

could be recognized by walking through the whole production process and detailing it using lean tools such

as Value Stream Map (VSM). This representation could highlight the sources of waste (Rother and Shook,

2009), consequently prompting ways to eliminate them through a process of continuous improvement

(Duque and Cadavid, 2007). VSM, which originated from process map instils more advanced functions than

the process map by supplying comprehensive information and quantitative data that enables objective

results to be drawn (Irani and Zhou, 2000). Quantitative data that could be supplemented with VSM are

time (duration), quality (units completed), resources (number of people, distance travelled) and other

indicators that are well-suited to the situation (Rother and Shook, 2009). In this study, the VSM will be

integrated with the process map (VS-PM) to portray the current steps involved in an administrative process,

which will then act as the baseline for future improvements.

6.5.4 Performance Metrics

Performance metrics are essential to measure the performance of processes that require improvement

through the perspective of flow and value (Freire and Alarcon, 2002). Measurement metrics will be used

alongside the lean-based map to represent the performance of current processes quantitatively. It allows

the establishment of baseline for performance improvement and tracking of progress over time (US EPA,

2009a). Metrics selection is unique, depending on goals of improvement. The goal of this study is to improve

the administrative processes so that the production (time) and environmental (sediment pollution) variable

can benefit. Performance metrics proposed for this study are described as follows:

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1) Production Variables

Time metrics

Time metrics that include variables such as lead time, processing time, VA and NVA time is suggested to

be the universal metric as it has the potential to influence the performance of other variables, i.e. cost and

quality (Krupka, 1992). Nonetheless, the determination of other process metrics such as cost, quality,

outputs and process complexity is also important in order to identify problematic areas to improve (US EPA,

2009a).

The time variables involved in study are lead, cycle and process time. Lead time is used to indicate

anticipated or maximum allowable cycle time for a job whereas cycle time is the average time it takes for a

job to go through a line (Hopp and Spearman, 2011). Process time, also known as VA time is the time spent

adding value to a product (Arbulu et al., 2003). The aforementioned times are typically expressed in hours

or days. The establishment of time allows for further investigation to recognise complexity of the processes

involved.

Process complexity metrics

Process complexity is a metric that affects the length of processes, which includes variables such as

process steps, value-added process steps, decisions, delays, handoffs, loops and black holes (US EPA,

2009a). For example, the EPA Region 7 team has produced new process map that reduces number of

steps and handoffs, ultimately reducing the duration of process time without the need to create a new

process from scratch (US EPA, 2013; US EPA, 2009b). The reduction in complexity may shorten the

duration of processes, consequently enhancing the importance of adapting process complexity as a metrics

besides the time component for process improvement.

In this study, it is crucial to measure complexity of the administrative processes because complexity

increases time duration (Griffin, 1993) where an extended duration, especially during earthwork could

increase the risk of sediment pollution. Complexity within the administrative processes can be determined

through the use of lean government based metrics (US EPA, 2009a). The metrics selected for this study

includes number of process steps and value-added steps.

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2) Environmental Variable

Sediment Pollution

Ideally, reduction in administrative process waste could lead to shortened earthwork operation time,

consequently lowering the risk of sediment pollution. The claim could be proven using the Universal Soil

Loss Equation (USLE) equation. USLE is an erosion model designed to predict the long-term average

annual soil loss from specific areas (Wischmeier and Smith, 1978). The use of this equation is

advantageous because it has been well-established and tested over the years with its validity being

recognized (Teh, 2011). The USLE equation involves six variables: 1) rainfall and runoff erosivity (R); 2)

soil erodibility (K); 3) slope length (L); 4) slope steepness (S); 5) cover/ management practices (C) and 6)

supporting conservation practices (P), with the equation given as follows:

A=R x K x L x S x C x P

Where, A is the computed spatial and temporal average soil loss per unit of area.

This study is keen to portray the relationship between shortened production time with sediment

pollution, where soil losses may take place. According to King and Holder (1977) and Balousek (2000),

major variable that influences the prediction of soil loss over a short time period such as construction is the

R factor with short term changes in land condition. Hence, only the R factor would be of concern as it

relates to the variable of interest, which is time. For this study, the following steps proposed by King and

Holder (1977) in evaluating soil loss for a short time period has been adapted.

Step 1: Identify area of study and time period where the USLE factors can be presumed to be constant for

the selected period.

Step 2: Calculate the adjusted R factor based on the Erosivity Index distribution curve for the period of

study. The R value in this study will be in the unit of MJ.mm/ha.yr.

Step 3: Evaluate the different values of the R factor with respect to the different time period considered.

Relate the figure to soil loss.

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Similar technique of adapting the USLE equation is found in a study by Balousek et al. (2000) in predicting

soil loss from construction sites. Their contribution in adapting the USLE into shorter period highlighted the

importance of the time element that signifies the criticality of erosion for certain periods within a year.

6.6 Analytical Framework of the Relationship between the administrative process waste,

production (time) and environmental (sediment pollution) variable

This section provides a systemic view on the linkages between the distinct variables of administrative

process, lean waste, production and the environment. The relationship is portrayed in the form of a CLD,

which will then act as the basis for the subsequent section that aims to improve the administrative waste

by using lean based approaches. After collecting and analyzing the information within the subjects of

Administrative process inefficiencies, Lean Administration, Lean Management and Causes of site water

pollution in relation to time, the subjects of administrative process inefficiencies and lean waste are further

investigated to identify its relation. It is essential to reiterate that this study focuses to improve the macro

processes of administration, which largely concerns restructuring of processes rather than micro

processes that relates more to operational factors. The potential variables for macro administrative

process inefficiencies and its associated lean waste (Refer to Section 2.0) have been derived according to

the US EPA (2009a) and Tapping (2003) and is given in Table 6.2. Accordingly, only three lean wastes are

found to be related with administrative process inefficiencies, as others are more inclined to equipment and

people factor.

Table 6.2 Administrative Process Waste

Lean waste Administrative process inefficiencies


Over processing Numerous and unnecessary approvals and signature levels.
Processing things that the customer Unnecessary steps (unnecessary reviews/ checking)
doesn't want. Handoffs (Numerous change hands for a service/ product)
Waiting Waiting for information.
Idle time that causes workflow to stop. Waiting for decision.
Inventory Backlog of work, the use of batch and queue system.
Excess stock of anything.

Relationships between the administrative process waste, production (time) and environmental

(sediment pollution) variable is shown in Figure 6.1. The CLD resulted in several loops which are all

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Reinforcing (R) in nature. The R loops will grow exponentially if no actions are taken to combat the causes,

especially the root cause of the problem. Relationships between the variables have been derived through

the use of literature. The variables have been established earlier through the use of content analysis by

following the procedures given by Elo and Kyngas (2008). As an example, the determination for Loop R2

is given as follows: Increase in approval requirement and signature level will subsequently intensify

unnecessary steps in a process (Hofacker, 2007). This is so because the same document has to go through

different approving levels but without any value added to the document. The unnecessary steps of having

to wait for approval and signature will cause time delay (Tapping, 2003), subsequently increasing the lead

time of the process (Womack and Jones, 1996a). The upsurge in lead time increases the duration land

being left opened (Goodemote, 2005). Increased duration or time of operation during earthwork will escalate

rainfall occurrence (Balousek et al., 2000) that increases soil loss (Ab Rahman et al., 2010), consequently

soaring the risk of sediment pollution (Arulmozhi et al., 2015). In reverse, the increase in sediment pollution

will result in amplified amount of approvals in order to control and manage the pollution (DID, 2010).

In reference to Figure 6.1, the CLD shows that different administrative process waste will still

produce similar effects on the production and environmental performance. Hence, reduction or elimination

of the root causes (administrative process waste) would eventually lead to a positive outcome in terms of

the time factor and sediment pollution during construction, towards achieving the aim of the lean-base clean

approach. The diagram also shows that the approvals/ signatures have the highest occurrence of

administrative waste and is the lead to other subsequent wastes. Conceptually, the unnecessary

requirements for approvals/ signatures should be the point of initial improvement as it is found to be the

root for subsequent problems.

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R4

Handoffs R3
+
+
Unnecessary
Information / Steps
Meeting
Approvals /
+
R2
Signatures

+
Decision
Batch &
Queue
System R1

+
+ Duration Land Rainfall Sediment
+ + Time Delay Lead Time Soil Loss
+ + Left Opened + Occurence + + Pollution

Legend: Over processing Waiting Inventory

Variables Cause-effect factors Loop R1 Loop R2 Loop R3 Loop R4 Frequency

Administrative Approvals/ Signatures 4


Process Information / Meeting 1
Waste Handoffs 1
Unnecessary Steps 1
Decision 1
Effect on Time Delay 4
Production Lead Time 4
Duration Land Left 4
Effect on Rainfall Occurrence 4
Environment Soil Loss 4
Sediment Pollution 4

Figure 6.1 Effect of Administrative Process Waste on the Production and Environmental Variable

6.7 Lean-Based Approach to Improve the Administrative Process Waste

This section involves the development of a lean-based approach by adapting the available lean thinking

tools and concepts towards improving the administrative process waste to benefit both production and

environmental performance. Furthermore, CLD will be used to enhance the functionalities of the developed

approach by narrowing down the root cause of the waste.

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6.7.1 Current Mapping for the Variation Order (V. O.) Approval Process

The administrative process for V.O. approval has been investigated for improvements so that contractor

could proceed with the pending work as soon as possible. Value Stream-Process Map (VS-PM) (Refer to

Figure 6.2) has been developed to demonstrate the processes involved in the V.O. approval process. The

Current State Map has been produced by following the four steps proposed by Tapping (2003):

1) Task selection: The task selected for improvement is V.O. approval process.

2) Defining main processes: The main process steps were initially derived by following a governmental

document/ standards on working procedures for V.O. approval (Public Works Department, 2008). In a public

project such as this, the working procedures are usually the same in most situations as there are regulated

procedures to be followed.

3) Data collection from real case: The initial representation is further enhanced with site based data. V.O.

process steps for this particular project have been derived from interviews with the district engineer,

engineer, assistant engineer, site based technical assistant and administrative staffs of this project.

4) Discussion on findings: Findings of the map are being discussed in subsequent section.

Value in design processes only involves design activities where other activities are considered as

waste and should be reduced or eliminated (Freire and Alarcon, 2002). Similarly, value for V.O. approval

process involves only works that directly produce the V.O. documentation and approval. In reference to

Figure 2, the V.O. approval processes consist of 17 process steps. In reference to the value consideration

by Freire and Alarcon (2002), only 4 steps could be considered as being VA while NVA steps dominated

76.5% of the system. From the perspective of duration, the total process time is given as 13.63 days whilst

lead time for the whole process is 32.5 days. This shows that the application or document is left idle for

almost half of the entire time.

Summarisation for the VA activities are described as follows: In reference to Figure 6.2, the first

two VA steps represent the preparation and submission of the V.O. document by the contractor where the

steps create value as it contributes directly to the V.O. approval process. The next VA step involves further

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action by the receiving engineer, who will compile the proposal with supplementary documents for the

consideration of the V.O. committee. The final VA activity is the approval letter provided for the contractor

to resume work. Without all the VA activities, the V.O. process could not be completed and work will be left

pending for a period of time.

Findings on the NVA processes are discussed according to the three categories of administrative

waste derived in Section 5.0.

Over-processing: It is common for waste to occur in administrative processes due to unnecessarily complex

and lengthy approval processes (Krings et al., 2006) and could include redundancies, unnecessary steps

and handoffs. In this case, redundant processes involve numerous approvals and signature requirements.

Unnecessary steps such as notification between various parties have also been identified. For instance,

the notification for V.O. was passed from the contractor to technician and then to the engineer, which do

not add value as the information delivered was redundant. By using the same example as previous, the

movement of document and information from one entity to another (handoffs) could also cause information

to be delivered inaccurately besides the obvious waste of time. In this study, the review and discussion for

the V.O. application goes through several rounds of deliberation (contractor-technician-engineer-quantity

surveyor-district engineer-approval committee) where it could have been completed in one session with all

parties present during the evaluation of options and strategies.

Waiting: Waiting tend to cause delay and time waste. According to Krings et al. (2006) and Tapping (2005),

waiting in administrative processes can be due to waiting for design, meeting and also information. In this

study, problem notification (information) from the contractor to the technician and then to the engineer may

only take a few hours at most through verbal communication. However, the time observed was longer and

delayed as the information was not passed on immediately upon receipt due to having other task in hand.

This causes waiting by the receiving end. In addition to that, waiting for the V.O. committee meeting is also

a waste of time as the submitted document is being left idle alongside the site work, pending the approval.

Inventory: Current work delegation using the batch and queue system also intensifies the current time waste

especially when administrative clerk who have received proposal from the contractor in the morning only

delivers it to the engineer in the afternoon. Upon receipt in the afternoon, the document may only be

124
reviewed on the next day, causing a waiting period. The receipt and review of proposal by the engineer

also depends on the amount of work in hand, besides the priority of the activity. Processes such as receipt

and registration of documents consume time but is not VA as the document is not being worked on until the

next process. The accumulation of documents will also cause works to arrive all at once, defying the

capacity of the individual, consequently prompting for further delays.

From the aspect of environment, the VS-PM is supplemented with a soil loss indicator represented

by the Rainfall Erosivity, R factor. In accordance to the USLE, soil loss is dependent on timing and duration

soil is being exposed to erosive agents (Bureau of Watershed Management, 2015). The R factor in the

USLE calculation provides the rainfall parameter that contributes to soil erosion as it is related to time by

looking at the intensity and duration of a precipitation event. In general, higher R value indicates a more

erosive weather condition (Nearing et al., 2005). The detailed calculation for the R factor is given in the

appendix.

125
Variables Numbers Total process time (days) Total lead time (days)

Process steps 17 13.63 32.5

VA process steps 4 4.5 10

NVA process steps 13 9.13 22.5

R factor for 4 months (September to December): 7012.15 MJ.mm/ha.yr.

Figure 6.2 Current VS-PM of the V.O. Approval Process

6.7.2 The use of CLD in Enhancing the Functionalities of the VS-PM

CLD has been used to overcome the limitations of the VS-PM. The VS-PM has provided the current NVA

processes but could not pin-point its root cause. Hence, the strategy of improvement might be general and

may not tackle the source of problem. As an enhancement, CLD is used to encapsulate the administrative

process waste from the study, subsequently providing the root cause of the waste. The CLD for this case

is given in Figure 6.3. The CLD has been drawn based on similar information obtained in the current VS-

PM by conducting a series of interview with the project personnel. The project personnel have been asked

questions in an iterative manner starting from the consequences of sediment pollution where the response

was given as the increase in corrective actions. Iteratively, the following question is on the consequences

of the increase in corrective action, where similar pattern of questioning has been conducted. Ultimately, a

CLD has been produced where it portrays the effect of V.O. process waste on time and sediment pollution

variable in a systemic view. From Figure 6.3, redundant notification is found to have the highest

occurrence link and proposed to be the initial target for elimination followed by other waste. Therefore, the

CLD provides a direction or starting point for improvement by reducing first the root cause, which may

subsequently reduce the occurrence of other following waste.

126
Waiting for
+
Information
R5
+
Corrective +
Redundant Actions
+
+ R4 Notifications R2
Late Information
Delivery Waiting for
Meeting +
+
R3 Redundant
+ Approvals /
Variability Signatures
R1

+ +
+ + Duration Land Rainfall Sediment
Time Delay Lead Time Soil Loss
+ + Left Opened + Occurence + + Pollution
Variables Loop R1 Loop R2 Loop R3 Loop R4 Loop R5
Sediment Pollution
Corrective Actions
Redundant Approvals
Redundant Notifications
Waiting for Information
Late Information Delivery
Waiting for-Meeting
Variability
Time Delay
Lead Time
Duration Land Left Opened
Rainfall Occurrence
Soil Loss
Sediment Pollution

Figure 6.3 Case Based CLD

6.7.3 Improvements and Future Map for the V.O. Approval Process

This section will address the inefficiencies identified in Section 6.1 and 6.2. According to Koskela (2000),

processes should not be complex and needs to be simplified by eliminating the NVA activities and

subsequently reconfiguring the VA activities. Therefore, NVA activities from the previous section should

first be identified and reduced as much as possible (Bauch, 2004) through the elimination of the identified

process waste. The initial point of improvement has been identified from the CLD given in Figure 6.3, where

improvement efforts first address the over-processing waste of redundant notification, followed by other

waste. Ideally, efforts to improve the current state should be continuous until the Ideal State is achieved,

where only VA activities exist (Bauch, 2004). Ideal State is when a system is perfect and in order to reach

the utopia state, a long-term improvement should be in place. However, it is essential to highlight that this

127
study only provides the Future Map and not the Ideal Map as the Future Map provides a more realistic

representation of progression for short-term improvement goals that could provide fast results (Plenert,

2012).

Future Map (FM) for the V.O. approval process (Refer to Figure 6.4) has been drawn using the

information gathered in Stage 2 (Current Map). According to the concept of continuous flow by Tapping

(2003), it is a necessity to eliminate the deficiencies identified in the Current Map in order to improve the

flow of processes. Additionally, Costa et al. (2013) found that elimination of waste in administrative

processes could improve productions performance. Hence, the entire Current Map has been reshuffled to

reflect a more streamlined process by eliminating the NVA activities, starting from over-processing steps.

The recognition of NVA activities are in accordance to the attributes given in Table 6.2. The goal here is to

eliminate NVA steps while still preserving the basic structure of the processes. Solutions provided in the

FM (See Figure 6.4) are discussed in accordance to the waste categories, given as follows:

Over-processing: In reference to Figure 6.1 and Figure 6.2, redundant steps such as several rounds of

notifications through various different parties have been identified as the root cause for other waste and are

removed. The process of evaluating proposal from the contractor has also been shortened by integrating

several steps into one. The engineer will now receive the proposal directly from the contractor without the

need to go through the administrative staff. The engineer could also submit the document directly for the

meeting without the validation by district engineer as the document will still be evaluated during the meeting.

Furthermore, the notice of approval to the contractor will be directly communicated from the V.O. committee

without third party (district engineer) involvement. From the reduction and integration of the over-

processing processes, steps could be streamlined with 53% positive improvement by deducing the process

steps from 17 to 8 with 61.5% of NVA activities have been eliminated as compared to the current states

NVA number.

Waiting: In the case of this public project, waiting for meeting with the V.O. committee is inevitable as the

V.O. process involves additional cost beyond the original contract. Hence, the meeting step has to be

retained in the FM. However, improvement strategy towards achieving the Ideal State could seek to abolish

128
this step by decentralizing the authority for approval at the district level, where district engineer and his

team could decide and approve on the V.O.

Inventory: In terms of inventory waste, no document should be left idle. The batch and queue system

practiced is proposed to be abolished through the use of radical change, as suggested by Womack and

Jones (1996a), for a fast and continuous flow in work. The technique requires changes to take place within

a day. This could be done by requesting administration staff to deliver any document to the related officer

once the document has been received. This could potentially allow the document to be worked on, instead

of it being kept idle on the desk. Also, processes that involve only receipt and submittal of document but

occupy a day of lead time represents waste as the document is not being worked on, apart from the

registration that may take several minutes at most. In the FM, those relevant steps has also been eliminated

or integrated into other processes.

In terms of time measure for the future state, the ultimate goal is to reduce waste time such as

waiting and delays (to reduce lead time) towards achieving a process time of 8.75 days, as compared to

the total current lead time of 20.5 days. It is crucial to highlight that no changes have been made on the

time factor of the processes. The time shortage was purely due to the reduction in NVA steps. For this

study, the FM still includes necessary NVA activities in moving towards the Ideal State. For milestone

improvement effort such as to create an achievable future state, it is suffice to show that the FM is enhanced

with positive improvements both in terms of reduction in process steps and NVA activities that subsequently

reduced the process and lead time of the processes.

From the environmental perspective, the R factor provided here is based on the 2 weeks reduced

time from 32.5 to 20.5 days. Hence, the R factor is quantified for 3.5 months of rainfall and the result is

lower than the initial value quantified in the Current Map. Even though the period is shortened for only 2

weeks, the high occurrence of rainfall, especially towards the end of the year is inevitable and may cause

larger damage and should be prevented. The R factor is reduced by 17% in relevance to the reduction in

time due to the streamlined processes, as shown in the FM. The reduction could reduce the water erosion

risk from the site, consequently reducing the sediment yield. Ultimately, the risk of sediment pollution could

be lowered.

129
For this case study, the proposed FM could positively improve the process, time and environmental

variable in the system, consequently embracing a clean-lean approach. As a verification, an interview

pertaining to the FM was done with the project personnel involved (engineer, assistant engineer and

administrative staff) where their responses were positive and they found the proposed FM to be acceptable.

However, the project personnel highlighted that for the process change to take place in practice, lengthy

request of change in working procedure will be involved as public organisations are tied with the common

work procedure stipulated in a standard governmental document given in Public Works Department (2008).

Nonetheless, the methodology and proposal could be brought to the attention of the person in-charge of

the standard procedures for future improvements or revisions of the current standard of work.

Variables Numbers Total process time Total lead time

FV % Imp. FV (days) % Imp. FV (days) % Imp.

Process steps 8 +52.9 8.75 +33.8 20.5 +36.9

VA process 3 +25 4.0 +11.1 9 +10

NVA process 5 +61.5 4.75 +47.97 11.5 +48.9

R factor for 3.5 months (September to mid-December): 5816.25 MJ.mm/ha.yr.

Figure 6.4 Future Map for the V.O. approval process

130
6.8 Discussion and Conclusion

This study has portrayed the interrelationship between the administrative process, lean waste, production

(time) and the environmental (sediment pollution) variable. The analytical framework using CLD has

depicted linkages between the aforementioned variables and has been further validated using a real project

data on a V.O. approval process that occurred during an earthwork operation. Similar core waste

(overproduction) has been observed between the theoretical and industry-based data. The V.O. approval

process has been explored and further improved with the use of lean tool and concept through the

development of a VS-PM. The VS-PM provides the means to improve the production (time) and also the

environmental (sediment pollution) variables. As a result, the administrative processes of V.O. have been

improved with 53% reduction in process steps that has a positive effect of 37% reduction in lead time

(production) and 17% reduction in the R (environmental) factor. The complementary use of CLD with the

purposively developed VS-PM has provided a new scientific contribution towards identifying and improving

waste in administrative processes related to construction.

The mechanism of the relationship between lean and clean is portrayed here as the core value of

clean has been adapted to improve the production and environmental variables through the use of lean

tools and principles, besides the addition of CLD as an enhancer. The strategy employed here portrays a

clean-lean method where a lean-based approach acts as a catalyst to achieve CP. Nonetheless, the future

challenge lies within the application across the various organizations. As mentioned by the respondents

during the verification stage, changes to the current system will require major revamp that involves

management at national level. Hence, it is suggested for this proposal to be referred directly to the party

involved in producing the Standard of Operation (SOP) of governmental procedures for consideration during

document revisions.

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6.10 Chapter Appendix

Computation steps for the Rainfall Erosivity R factor is given as follows:

Step 1: The area studied is located in the state of Pahang. The original extended duration of earthwork is

4 months (September to December). The enhanced duration after lean improvement is given as 3.5 months

(September to mid-December). The Rainfall Erosivity value for this site is between 16, 000 to 17, 000

MJ.mm/ha.yr. This figure could be found in the Pahang State Isohyet Map, given in DID (2010). Based on

the site location, the average rainfall erosivity value of 16, 500 MJ.mm/ha.yr is selected to represent the

annual R factor.

Step 2: The monthly modification factor (% rain monthly) to calculate the adjusted R factor is given in

Table 1. This is required as the R given in Step 1 is not monthly based. The monthly modification factor

can be referred to in DID (2010). The cumulative value of the % rain was calculated from the month of

January but only values for the affected month is shown here. The short term based R factor can be

calculated by multiplying the cumulative rainfall for the affected month with the annual R factor selected in

Step 1.

Table 1 R Factor Computation

Month August September October November December

% Rain Monthly 0.060 0.075 0.095 0.110 0.145

Cumulated % Rain 0.575 0.65 0.745 0.855 1.000

R for 4 months (Before lean improvement) (1.000-0.575)*16,500 = 7012.15


R for 3.5 months (After lean improvement) R= (0.9275-0.575)*16,500 = 5816.25

Step 3: The lower value of the modified R factor for after lean improvement suggests a lower soil erosion

rate due to rainfall. Hence, the reduction in time land being left opened could reduce the risk of sediment

pollution.

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CHAPTER 7

CLEAN-LEAN APPROACH TO MANAGE THE PROXIMAL FACTOR

(EARTHWORKS OPERATION) OF CONSTRUCTION SITE WATER POLLUTION

This chapter has been extracted from:

Belayutham, S, Gonzlez, V.A., and Yiu, T.W. (2015), Clean-Lean Integration: A Study on Earthworks

Operation. Journal of Cleaner Production, Submitted for Review.

7.1 Introduction

Previous chapter has addressed the distal factor of construction site water pollution using clean-lean

approach. Similar to the previous chapter, this chapter will apply the clean-lean approach to address the

proximal factor of construction site water pollution in order to benefit both the environmental and production

factor of construction. Earthwork operation takes place during the early stages of construction where it

involves land clearing and grading for a short period of time. Regardless of the short duration of operation,

the environmental threat is detrimental, especially from the aspect of water pollution with sediment as the

pollutant (Ooshaksaraie, et al., 2009; Taylor and Field, 2007). Soil loss that occurs during earthwork would

be in a large scale where the calculated annual soil loss for a particular cleared earthwork site is estimated

at 16.14 tons while the pre-earthwork soil loss is given as 3.2 tons (Pain, 2014). Therefore, earthwork is a

critical work stage that requires proper management because an uncontrolled cleared site could result in

sediment pollution (Brown and Caraco, 1997). Sediment pollution could create chains of problems such as

damage to the aquatic ecosystem, health risk to the people and also unnecessary cost and resources for

remedial works (Harbor, 1999).

Brown and Caraco (1997) and Pain (2014) have suggested two critical yet controllable variable for

better management of earthwork site which are duration and size of land exposed at a period of time. The

production factor of time has been hailed as a crucial variable in earthworks because this operation sets

the rhythm for subsequent activities (Fu, 2013). Besides that, the operation also acquires a relatively high

cost in comparison to the time spent on the work, due to the heavy dependence on machineries and skilled

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operators. Hence, it is common for productivity to be the subject of interest among industry players and

researches who seek to improve the operation (Martinez, 1998; Dawood, et al., 2010). Previously,

productivity studies have focused on the traditional aspects of construction which are time, cost and quality

without relating it to the environment. However, the current scenario differs by progressing towards

integrating environment as part of productivity studies. For example, Golzarpoor et al. (2013) have provided

a synergistic approach that combines production and environmental factors in determining the cost, fuel,

energy and emission from earthwork operations. Gonzlez and Echaveguren (2012) and Capony et al.

(2012) have also conducted similar research using discrete event simulation and GPS technology

respectively. However, most of the studies have concentrated on the common issues of air and carbon

emission with least regards for sediment pollution.

In the area of earthworks, lean approaches have mostly been utilized to improve the work

production. The application of lean in earthworks could be categorized as pure lean or technologically

infused lean approach (Belayutham and Gonzlez, 2015). In the category of pure lean approach, Fidler and

Betts (2008) and Kaiser and Zikas (2009) have used lean tools and principles to stabilize and improve the

efficiencies of the earthwork movement, increase equipment utilization, cost reduction and optimize labor

resources. For improvements done with the help of technology, Dawood et al. (2010) have produced an

interactive visual lean system for earthwork operations planning to achieve transparency, reduce

complexity, waste and positive project time. Similarly, Kemppainen et al. (2004) have used two optimization

algorithms to assist in finding the most cost-efficient schedule and mass haul alternatives that ultimately

increased the functions of Last Planner system in Finlands construction industry. Meanwhile, Kirchbach et

al. (2014) have presented digital kanban, a system supported by machine sensory and Information

Technology that embraces the lean principles for an optimized earthwork productivity. Most works have

been done to apply lean in improving earthworks production with little effort found to enhance the

environmental variable, specifically sediment pollution.

This chapter aims to develop and model the use of clean-lean method for earthwork operation in

order to reduce the risk of site sediment pollution, consequently improving also the production factors. This

chapter works as a data verification for acknowledging the role of proximal factors in construction site water

143
pollution, as discussed in Chapter 1 and 2. This chapter also verifies the use of clean-lean method, as

discussed conceptually in Chapter 3.

7.2 The Proximal Factor of Earthwork Production

The relation of proximal factors in causing construction site water pollution has been discussed in detail in

Chapter 3. Nonetheless, as a refresher, the definition of proximal factor is referred to the works of Suraji et

al. (2001) where proximal causes are factors that directly leads to an incident. Hence, factors that could

directly affect the performance of an earthwork operation could involve operational factors such as

equipment breakdown and lack of skilled operator (Martinez, 1998; Christian and Xie, 1996). Proximal

factors are within the responsibility and judgement of contractors, which makes it relatively easier to amend

or rectify as compared to the distal factors which are beyond their work task. Therefore, this chapter will

identify and provide suggestions to improve the distal factors in an earthwork operation through the use of

a clean-lean method.

7.3 Research Method for Clean-Lean Earthwork

Following that, a clean-lean method is proposed by using earthworks operation with sediment pollution as

the case subject. The research work has been conducted following the elements given in Table 7.1.

Table 7.1 Research Work Phases

Data Collection Data Analysis Outcome/ Objective


Case study Production and environmental To develop and model the use of clean-
Interview performance indicators lean method for earthwork operation in
Observation order to reduce the risk of site sediment
Site document pollution and accordingly, to improve
analysis production performance.

7.3.1 Case Study for Clean-Lean Method of Earthwork

This chapter involves the development of a clean-lean method for a study on earthwork operation with the

environmental subject of sediment pollution. This study involves various data collection methods to

comprehensively portray the clean-lean method towards improving the earthwork operation. In order to

complete the various steps involved in depicting the clean-lean method, a simplified description of the data

collection method is given below. Further details on this method are given in Section 7.4.

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Case study

This particular case study has been conducted using several data collection methods which consist of

interview, observation and site document review (site diary, daily production record, project details report).

Case study is particularly relevant for this research because it requires a focused and in-depth investigation

to produce a clean-lean method that represents a real scenario. Similar method of study has been used by

Cabello Eras et al. (2013) to propose cleaner production strategies to improve the environmental

performance of an earthwork project. The case study for this research was selected based on its availability

but essentially, the project must involve earthworks. The selected project involves commercial and light

industrial development, located in the Raub district within the state of Pahang in Malaysia. The project has

initially started off with site clearance activity that was conducted for a period of 3 months prior to the cut

and fill work that commenced from the month of June till December 2013.

7.4 Clean-Lean Method Development

The clean-lean method could demonstrate the application of the integrated concept in order to fulfill

the fundamental goals of the integrated LP and CP concept. In reference to Section 4.7, Chapter 4,

LP enables CP and therefore, the clean-lean method will use lean as the guiding principle towards

achieving simultaneous improvements in the production and environmental performance. The

proposition for clean-lean earthworks operation is where the modification or improvement of earthwork

processes using LP will potentially benefit in reducing the source of site pollution, subsequently

reducing risk to the environment. Additionally, the improved processes will autonomously address the

goals of LP by reduced duration that will increase customer satisfaction besides other mutual goals of

both concepts such as reduced cost.

The basic principles of LP, as introduced by Womack and Jones (1996) are used as the guiding

method for this study as it provides a clear and descriptive step-by-step approach for application,

which consist of: 1) Specify value; 2) Identify value stream; 3) Create flow; 4) Apply pull system and

5) Pursue perfection. Apparently, these steps are also similar to CP implementation plans prescribed

by UNEP (1996), which consist of: 1) Pre-assessment; 2) Measure and identify; 3) Synthesis of

information by identifying waste reduction options and 4) continuous improvement. Step 1 of lean

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correlates with step 1 and 2 of clean to define and measure the current situation. Then, step 3 and 4

of lean goes along with step 3 of clean to identify waste elimination opportunities and the last steps of

both concept aims to pursue perfection. The similar implementation steps ensure less contradiction

on implementation procedures, which will ease the use of LP procedures as the guiding protocol. Each

steps in the clean-lean method contains various tools and techniques as well as data sources. Each

tool does require certain data display and the methods used to attain the data is given in Table 7.2,

together with the relevant steps. The mutual tools of LP and CP, which is given in Figure 4.3, Chapter

4 are used alongside other related LP tools. The use of those tools will be described within the body

of discussion in the following section.

Table 7.2 Clean-Lean Steps, Tools and Data Sources

Potential Tools and Techniques


Clean-Lean Steps Research Method Details of Research Method
Employed

Step 1: Value Literature Review (Supplier-Input-Process-Output- Literature review: Journal,


Customer) SIPOC; 5 Whys. conference, books, electronic
articles, thesis.
Step 2: Value Stream Literature Review Value Stream Map (VSM), site
Document analysis productivity chart (Process Capability
Measurement) Observation: One earthwork site, 5
Observation cycles of cut and fill.
Interviews
Step 3: Flow Interview Root cause analysis, VSM, process Interviews: Earthworks project
Observation capability measurement, variability personnel (Site engineers, site
agent and site supervisor) with
Document analysis average of 15 years working
experience.
Step 4: Pull Interview Waste elimination, Pull (Just-In-Time)
Observation
Document analysis: Daily site diary,
Step 5: Continuous Interview Standardisation, production levelling, daily number of trips, project
Improvement process efficiency, cost reduction, document (drawing, claim payment)
source reduction, Kaizen

7.4.1 Determination of VALUE

Value is determined from the perspective of the customer (Womack and Jones, 1996). The first step

is to recognize customers requirements as it is the pre-requisite before further works could be done

(Sayer and Williams, 2007). Assuming the customer aims to adopt clean-lean, the value should include

both the goals in terms of production and the environment for an earthwork operation. The potential

clean-lean tools/ practices applicable to this step are: Supplier-Input-Process-Output-Customer

(SIPOC) and 5 Whys. SIPOC is a lean-based tool that is commonly used to attain the voice or

146
requirements from customers (Sayer and Williams, 2007) while 5 Whys is a tool that has been used

in both concepts, as shown in Figure 1. In this study, the SIPOC has been derived from the use of

earthworks related literatures (Pain, 2014; Peurifoy and Oberlender, 2004; Martinez, 1998; Gransberg

et al., 2006; Christian and Xie, 1996) and is shown in Figure 2. The SIPOC is derived by providing

answers to these questions: 1) Who are the suppliers for an earthwork operation? 2) What are the

inputs required for an earthwork operation? 3) What are the processes involved? 4) What are the

expected output from the operation? 5) Who are the customers of this operation? 6) What are the

requirements from the customers? Answers to question 4, 5 and 6 have been searched upon first as

those questions determine the core value of this operation. In general, customer is the recipient of the

output from a process. In this study, the two outputs considered are production and environmental

output that needs to further satisfy a set of different customers and requirements. Then, by working

backwards, answers are provided for question 1, 2 and 3. From figure 2, the requirements could be

broken down into two separate values whereby the first value would satisfy the production aspect of

timely delivery, within budget and quality while the second is the environmental value of clean water

and minimal emission into water bodies. As discussed in Section 7.1, the different values are

commonly being managed in isolation through the use of production and erosion sediment control

methods. In contrary, the clean-lean method proposed here intents for those distinct measures to be

integrated and managed together.

(1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6)


Supplier Input Process Output Customer Requirements
Production

Earthwork Timely
operation Graded delivery
Equipment Client
Earthwork earth Within
Skilled Next
Contractor RL budget
workers contractor
Cut Platform Accepted
quality

Earthwork Land surface


Clean
Environment

plan transformation
Haul Receiving water
Erosion Excessive
Design environment Reduced
and runoff
Engineer and its emission
Sediment Erosion
surroundings to water
control Fill and
body
plan sediment

Figure 7.1 SIPOC for Earthwork Operation

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Further derivation is required to identify a common point of improvement for the different values

identified between the customers requirements for production and environment (sediment pollution).

Point of improvement could be identified by comprehensively going through factors that could affect

performances of both dimensions. In order to do so, a clean-lean technique called 5 Whys is used to

derive the potential factors. 5 Whys is a lean technique used to identify the root cause of a problem

(Sayer and William, 2007). The application of this technique has also been done with the use of

literature. The procedure begins by asking the question why a problem exist and the answer to the

problem is written below the aforementioned problem and the same procedure will be repeated

approximately five times. Similar steps will be repeated for both production (earthwork operation) and

environmental aspect (water pollution).

Using water pollution as an example, the derivation is given as follows: The most proximal

reasons for water pollution to occur is the intertwined processes of excessive runoff, erosion and

sedimentation (Chen et al., 2007). Then, the answer for why those processes occur is further searched

for and could be divided into natural factors (Ismail and Yee, 2012) and man-made error (Wu et al.,

2012). However, natural factors are beyond the subject of improvement under LP. Hence, only man-

made factors will be the focus for further derivation. The immediate reasons for the man-made factors

can further be divided into areas opened at one time (Goodemote, 2005), duration of work (Davis et

al., 2003), unfavourable season (Maniquiz et al., 2009), faulty facilities (Weese, 2007) and improper

practices (Yao et al., 2011). All factors could further be categorized into either pre-construction based

(distal) or construction based (proximal) factors (Belayutham et al., 2015). However, this study

concerns on the proximal factors that are within the boundary of operation. Similar method of derivation

has been applied to identify factors that affect the production factor of earthwork operation.

From Figure 7.2, time has been identified as the point of similarity for improvement since both

aspects of production and environment are being affected by time. Therefore, efforts to improve the

time variable could first improve the production performance by completing the operation ahead of

schedule or at least on-time and secondly, time reduction could reduce the occurrence of rainfall,

subsequently reducing the risk of excessive runoff and erosion, ultimately minimising the risk of water

148
pollution. This step has provided a theoretical based integration in identifying the similar factor for

simultaneous improvements of the production and environmental aspect of earthwork operation.

Hence, the rest of the clean-lean steps will be scoped to address the time factor.

Figure 7.2 Point of Similarity for Earthwork Production and Environmental Improvement

7.4.2 Identification and mapping of the VALUE STREAM

This section aims to identify and document the current process of earthworks operation by recognizing

its work progression from a short and long duration scale. Short time period allows the identification

of inefficiencies in processes while long time period could provide a perspective in recognizing

variability of the production. This mostly measurement related step will establish indicators to measure

the current status of earthwork from the production and environmental aspect. Detailed discussion on

the measurements and the portrayal of an earthwork operation will be given in the following section,

which is organized into production and environmental measures. The Clean-Lean tools/ practices

adopted for this step are as follows: Value Stream Map (VSM) and site productivity chart (process

capability measurement).

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Production Measure

In this study, the production measure is proposed to be identified at two levels: 1) Micro level: Detailed

perspective of the production process by mapping the VSM that identifies operation waste and 2) Macro

level: A larger perspective that shows the operations monthly output through the use of bar chart that

displays output variations. It is essential to highlight that days with only soil material as an output will be

considered for this study. The intention is to provide a comparable platform to identify waste and

inefficiencies in the process. Soil accounts for 80.1% of total material from the site under study that includes

also rock at 11.9% and hard material at 8%. At this stage, taking into consideration all the other materials

will only complicate this initial attempt of portraying the use of clean-lean approach. This is due to the

potential outlying reason for inefficiencies that can be related to characteristics of the material, which is

beyond the control of the production team. However, the mentioned scope of work and limitation could be

a point for future studies.

Micro Level (VSM)

VSM is a graphical representation of the flow of processes, information and material in a system

that delivers output. Mapping allows the sources of waste in a system to be identified and eliminated (Rother

and Shook, 2009). In this study, VSM is used to portray current processes involved in the earthwork

operation that comprised of three main processes, i.e. cut, haul and fill (Martinez, 1998). Data for the

purpose of producing this VSM has been collected from an on-site observation as well as discussion with

the project personnel involved in the project. In order to further derive the performance metrics of the

operation, productivity scale of the operation should first be defined. Generally, earthwork productivity could

be measured with volume of earth per unit of time (m3/t) which can be derived from the number of unloading

or trips by the trucks in a day. Capacity of the trucks used in this project is 6m3. Hence, 1 truck unload/ trip

= 6 m3 of soil. The truck load can be converted to quantity of soil where the flowing unit is determined as

m3 of earth. In order to portray the details of earthwork in a VSM, data for the required indicators are shown

in Table 7.3 (NZ Qualification Authority, 2015):

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Table 7.3 Measured Indicators

Indicators Measurement Indicators Measurement


Start day Month/ day Distance travelled m
Finish day Month/ day No. of workers No.
Start time Hour/ mins./ sec. No. of equipment No.
Finish time Hour/ mins./ sec. No. of trips No.
Idle time Hour/ mins./ sec.

From the indicators, production factors could be processed and is given as follows:

Cycle time (min. / sec.) = The definition of cycle time by Hopp and Spearman (2011) is used where

cycle time is the average time for a job to go through a production line.

Productive time (PT) = Duration when earth is being worked on.

Non-productive time (NPT) = Duration when no movement of earth is observed.

Output per day (m3) = (No. of trips x 6)

Other variables which could also provide measures for the work progression include downtime of

equipment and frequency of downtime. This information was not obtained from observation but has been

provided by the site engineer, which is further verified with the site diary.

For the case studied, the current VSM based on the aforementioned process and indicators is

shown in Figure 7.3. The VSM is drawn based on five cycles of observation with the same haulage distance.

After discussion with the site engineer, it is agreed that a single cycle of work would best be represented

by 10 unloads/trips to portray the earth movement of the related equipment. Therefore, 1 cycle = 10

unloads/trips of earth. It is essential to highlight that the time value provided in the VSM is represented as

the average time. VSM tries to identify opportunities for improvement rather than to produce very accurate

measures of performance, thus, average time is considered reasonable (Rother and Shook, 2009;

Rosenbaum et al., 2014)

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Figure 7.3 Current Map for Earthwork Operation

VSM has provided measures for the operation at the process level. However, it is difficult to

distinguish the variability of output achievement for a longer period of time. Therefore, a macro perspective

on the performance of the earthwork operation is proposed and the information could be obtained from the

archival data (daily productivity that is represented by number of trips by trucks in a day) of the project. This

macro perspective could not directly pin-point the operational waste but allows the portrayal of output

variability where further enquiries could be done to identify reasons for the variability and potential waste

where variability is significant. For this study, the information obtained is for a period of 7 months where all

data is represented in a monthly basis (Refer to Figure 7.4). The monthly output portrays a large variability

in output between the different months. This macro perspective could complement the limitations of the

conventional VSM by portraying the work performance over a longer period of time, consequently enabling

the identification of the output patterns. The performance pattern allows the assessment of variability in

order to identify the smoothness or unevenness of the output. According to Deif (2012), previous studies

have focused much on waste elimination while variability elimination has been side-lined. From a lean

perspective, it is preferable for output to be smooth rather than to have large variances because variability

could signal subsequent problems such as congestion and longer lead time (Deif, 2012). In this study, the

bar chart of output in Figure 7.4 is supplemented with the Co-efficient of Variation (CoV) analysis. Thomas

and Zavrski (1999) has used CoV to measure variability where higher value of CoV indicates higher

variability in the system. Similarly, Deif (2012) has also used CoV to capture time and flow variances in his

study while Shehata and El-Gohary (2011) concluded that the criteria to improve project performance is

152
through reducing variability in output. In this study, the highest CoV or variability in daily output is for the

month of July. Hence, further analysis is conducted to dig deeper into the output for the month of July in

order to understand the causes of the variability. The summary of output for the month of July is given in

Figure 7.5. Further details of the production level will be discussed in the following section.

Monthly No. of Trips


6000 5382 5289 Month CoV
5000 June 0.01633
No. of trips

4000 3514 July 0.18661


August 0.0946
3000
1923 September 0.11836
2000 1435 October 0.08154
948 685
1000 November 0.17093
0 December 0.17162
Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Month

Figure 7.4 Monthly Output

Daily Truck Output


350 324
298 292 287
300 264 257 268 276 278 266 264
233 241
250 226 232 225 225
208 206 209
Total Trips

189
200
150 114
100
50
0
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22
Days

Figure 7.5 Performance for the Month of July

Environmental Measure

From the perspective of environment (sediment pollution), similar method of calculating the value

of Rainfall Erosivity is adopted (Refer to Chapter 6). Using the established equation, the current earthwork

project acquired a duration of seven months for completion, from June to December. Hence, the calculated

rainfall erosivity R for the given operation period is 10,065 MJ.mm/ha.yr. Detailed calculation of the R

factor is given in the appendix.

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7.4.3 FLOW creation through waste elimination

This current step functions to identify reasons for the waste found in VSM and variability identified in the

monthly output chart. In the language of lean, this step identifies the inefficiencies that deter smooth flow

of the earthwork operation. Improvements to the identified reasons could further improve the production

factor of time, consequently also the R factor of the environmental dimension. The clean-lean tools

adopted in this step are as follows: root cause analysis; VSM; process capability measurement and

variability.

Waste Recognition from VSM

In reference to the current VSM given in Figure 7.3, the process flow shows both the productive

(cycle) and non-productive (idle) times of the earthwork operation. The percentage of non-productive (idle)

time is 31.5% of the total lead time of 124 minutes. A large portion of the idle time (15 minutes) is found at

the fill area where the dumped soil is not being worked on till it reaches 10 loads. Even though the idle time

did not cause congestion to other work sections, the two idling machineries (dozer and compactor)

represent waste of resources. Another apparent waste can be seen at the cutting area where it shows the

idle time of excavator when soil is not being worked on. Based on a discussion with the site engineer of the

project under study, the resources provided for loading and hauling are two excavators with five trucks,

where the truck will move from cut (C) to fill (F) area. The site engineer also mentioned that 1 excavator will

service between 2 to 3 trucks for a round trip. Using the cycle time given in the VSM, it is observed that

excavator loading time is 2 minutes per trip while the haulage time for truck is 6 minutes per trip. The

movement and position of trucks is shown in Figure 7.6. When the excavator services 3 trucks in a round

trip, the excavator will be idle for at least 2 minutes (dashed line represents non-working time for the

excavator) while waiting for the first truck to return (Refer to Figure 7.6, Excavator 1). At the same time,

Excavator 2 would be servicing 2 trucks and the waiting time by the other excavator for the return of truck

1 is 4 minutes (dashed line represents non-working time for the excavator) (Refer to Figure 7.6, Excavator

2). Theoretically, calculation for the required number of trucks with one excavator is given in the following

equation by Gransberg et al., (2006), which was recognized earlier by Peurifoy and Oberlender (2004). It

is essential to highlight that the equation uses average production rate which is deterministic in nature.

Number of required trucks = truck (loading + going + return + dumping) time / loading time

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For the current site, the total loading, hauling and dumping time is 8 minutes while the loading time

is 2 minutes (Refer to VSM in Figure 7.3). Hence, a single excavator is expected to serve 4 excavators

where two excavators could serve up to 8 trucks. It is apparent that the current project is running low on

trucks, causing inefficient use of the excavators. Additionally, a smaller portion of the total idle time can be

seen at the cut and fill area with 5 minutes idle time observed for each cycle as the truck prepares to move

and navigate to or from the area. It is essential to reiterate here that the time measurement is given as

average time and is deterministic in nature. There is no doubt that there are more precise modelling options

available such as computer modelling that could provide a stochastic value (Poshdar et al., 2014). However,

the use of stochastic value is not necessary in relation to the purpose of this analysis, which is to identify

improvement opportunities at the current site, which are not visible using traditional management methods.

Figure 7.6 Movement of Truck

Variability Based on Production Output

From the macro perspective, the bar chart given in Figure 7.5 shows a relatively uneven work

output between days in July. According to Thomas and Zavrski (1999), variability in daily output has a

strong correlation with project performance. Hence, the daily output is further investigated by representing

the daily output of trucks (Truck A, B, C, D, E) against the working days in Table 7.4. The information has

been gathered from the particular sites daily record that consist of number of trips by trucks. Furthermore,

CoV value is provided to show the variance between total number of trips daily, which is given as 18.66%.

The highest output is given as 324 trips on day 21 while the lowest output is 114 on day 16. A correlation

between variance and daily output performance is identified among the days with high variance (shaded

rows in Table 7.4) with its respective number of trips by using Pearsons r correlation. Result of the

correlation is given as -0.8146, which indicates a strong negative correlation, whereby increase in variability

will affect daily performance by the decrease in daily total trips. Due to the negative effect of high variability,

the site personnel that consist of site engineer and site supervisor from the contractors organization and

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site agent who represents the client were first queried on possible reasons for the monthly output

unevenness. The interview with them started off with question why large variability of output is observed

between different days. From the input, the major reason is related to machine breakdown, followed by

rainfall and skill of operators. Besides the deficiencies, it has also been highlighted that the distance may

vary between days and this could have contributed to the different outputs, apart from the discovery of rock

and other hard materials.

Advancing from that, it is also observed that the number of trips differ quite significantly from one

truck to another. Refer to Table 7.4 on the computed CoV based on the daily output of trucks. From the

table, Truck B has the highest output while Truck E has the lowest output. However, due to slight changes

in distance between days, the comparison between days might not reflect an apple to an apple

comparison. According to Thomas and Zavrski (1999), daily variability can be used to set apart good and

bad performing projects. Hence, detailed identification of inefficiencies is done based on daily output

between trucks as this will provide a common ground for comparison due to similar haulage distance in a

day.

Table 7.4 CoV for Daily Truck Output

Working No. of trips Daily Total Daily CoV


days Trips Between Trucks
Truck A Truck B Truck C Truck D Truck E
1 47 50 42 50 37 226 0.12456
2 47 47 46 47 45 232 0.01928
3 41 43 47 38 39 208 0.086
4 60 54 49 48 53 264 0.09024
5 57 51 48 49 52 257 0.06823
6 54 70 69 52 53 298 0.15221
7 60 55 51 50 52 268 0.07532
8 53 69 68 51 51 292 0.15861
9 47 50 41 50 37 225 0.12862
10 62 57 53 51 53 276 0.07938
11 62 57 53 52 54 278 0.07261
12 46 50 42 50 37 225 0.12373
13 37 39 43 34 36 189 0.09049
14 48 47 46 47 45 233 0.02447
15 0 28 28 29 29 114 0.55945
16 41 41 41 59 59 241 0.20454
17 55 55 53 52 51 266 0.03363

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18 64 59 56 53 55 287 0.07453
19 32 55 54 33 32 206 0.29498
20 42 43 47 38 39 209 0.08526
21 71 62 62 64 65 324 0.05712
22 59 53 49 49 54 264 0.07855
Total Trips 1021 1076 1032 993 973
CoV for daily trips 0.18661

From Table 7.4, 8 out of 22 days provide CoV value greater than 10%. Due to that, the site based

respondents have been queried on the reasons for the difference in output between trucks of the same

distance. The respondents were asked the following question: From the data, particularly on days with high

CoV (shaded in Table 6), we could see that the daily total trips do vary between trucks. Can you please

provide factors that could have caused such variance between the trucks? From the interview, the related

factors that could have caused the unevenness are given as follows:

Machine breakdown, especially when there are no backup resources such as the breakdown of

Truck A on Day 15 which has contributed to the highest CoV of the month.

Skill and experience of the equipment operator, where the difference between experienced and

less experienced ones could result in shortages of at least 12 m3 /day or 2 trips of tipper, as shown

in the lowest CoV day, which is day 2. The differences in skill provides a non-standardised work

execution that causes disruption in the flow of work that can contribute to disturbance in haulage

time, further prompting unnecessary queuing and unevenness in output between trucks.

At the cut section, the position and turning point/ swivel degree of the excavator creates differences

in time and efficiency. Smaller swivel point is much efficient than large swivel points. Hence, if the

truck operator could position the truck to reduce the motion of excavator, the cycle time could be

shortened.

At the fill section, cycle time increases when tipper unloads soil far from the dozer. Common

improper practices can also be found with compactors where vibrators were not activated in attempt

to reduce cost. Non-vibrated compactor could cause a longer cycle time besides further damages

such as failing compaction test that leads to unnecessary halt of the operation.

Those aforementioned reasons also coincide with certain causes of variability in manufacturing

such as different processing time and unavailability of machine, as mentioned by Deif (2012).

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7.4.4 Respond to customer PULL

Generally, this section discusses on the solutions for the inefficiencies and waste identified at the micro

level which used the VSM. The tools that will be adopted in this step are waste removal, Just in Time (JIT)

and pull system. From the micro perspective of VSM, waste could be identified from the current processes

(Figure 7.3) where activities are linked to each other using the traditional push system. Earth is loaded by

the excavator into the truck, which is then passed on to the fill section. Mismatch happens when push is

being applied without matching the availability of truck that results in idle time for the excavator, as shown

in Figure 7.6. The solutions proposed to address the inefficiencies is either by 1) reducing the number of

excavator to 1 with trucks reduced to 4 or 2) retain both excavators but to add 3 trucks into the system.

This is in order to eliminate the idle time of the excavator that waits for the trucks to return. The truck

requirement is calculated using the deterministic equation given in step 3, with the use of the measured

current loading and hauling time taken from the VSM. The ideal set of trucks to create flow by eliminating

the excavator idle time is 1 excavator = 4 trucks. In order to improve the time factor, which will then benefit

the production and environmental measure, option 2 is the preferred choice as option 1 will cause delay on

the time factor whilst the intended aim is to expedite the completion of the operation. Hence, the current

study would require the addition of 3 trucks to ensure no waste of waiting in the operation. The calculated

outcome of this chosen option is given in Table 7.5. It is shown that with the addition of 3 trucks, the soil

hauling output can be increased by 60% from the original 5 trucks. The number of trips required for this

project is approximately 19176 trips, equivalent to approximately 115056m3 of soil. With the addition of 3

trucks, the number of trips could be achieved as early as the 7th operation day in November. Hence, work

could be completed by the 7th operation day in November. The reduction in time has a positive consequence

on the risk of sediment pollution where the calculated R factor is reduced to 7672.5 MJ.mm/ha.yr.

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Table 7.5 Outcome with Additional Trucks

Month Current no. Cumulative With 3 additional Cumulative no. of trip with
of trips no. of trips trucks (x1.6 of current added truck
trip)
June 1435 1435 2296 2296
July 5382 6817 8611 10907
August 948 7765 1517 12424
September 685 8450 1096 13520
October 1923 10373 3077 16597
November 3514 13887 5622 19545 7th day November
December 5289 19176 8462
Original R factor:
(1.000-0.39)*16,500 = 10,065 MJ.mm/ha.yr.
R factor with 3 additional trucks:
(0.855-0.39)*16,500 =7,672.5 MJ.mm/ha.yr.

Nonetheless, the issue of cost might be of concern as increase in resources could cause the

increase in cost. Hence, a cost analysis based on direct cost of equipment hire is conducted to ensure the

viability of the improvement strategy. Table 7.6 shows the total cost of equipment hire for the present

situation and also the improved situation with added trucks. The original duration of the project is 75 days

and the increase in truck could shorten the operation to 52 days. The daily rate for those equipment was

given by the site engineer. The total cost of adding trucks is still lower than the total cost with no added

truck but longer operation time. Hence, the proposed strategy benefits the production (time and cost) and

environmental R factor for water pollution.

Table 7.6 Cost of Equipment Hire

Equipment Daily rate Original no. of Trucks With added trucks


(RM) No. Days Hire Cost No. Days Hire Cost
Truck 500 5 75 187500 8 52 208000
Excavator 550 2 82500 2 57200
Compactor 600 1 45000 1 31200
Dozer 650 1 48750 1 33800
Total Cost 363,750 Total Cost 330,200

7.4.5 CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT to pursue perfection

The macro level inefficiencies perceived from the variability in output will be addressed here using lean

tools and principles such as standardisation, production levelling, process efficiency, cost reduction, source

reduction and kaizen. Reasons for the variation between trucks have been determined in Step 3 where the

respondents have generally related the variations back to machine breakdown and skill of operators. In

order to pursue perfection, an ideal situation is desired. For an ideal situation, the concept of maximum

production should be in use by eliminating all waste in the operational processes. To improve current

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processes, the ill-practices identified in Step 3 should be eliminated. Firstly, in order to address machine

breakdowns, proper maintenance schedule should be in place. Hence, it is proposed for the organization

to plan a preventive maintenance program alongside the construction schedule in order to enable

maintenance works to be conducted. LP has heavily emphasized the importance of equipment maintenance

with a simple method called preventive maintenance (Ohno, 1988). Conversation with the site engineer has

revealed that they do not have a fixed maintenance schedule for each operator where the common practice

is to repair the equipment once it is dysfunctional. The second strategy for improvement is to fully utilize

the resources by eliminating idle time. Therefore, it is essential for operators to be educated on the right

and most optimized way of handling the equipment. In order to do that, a baseline productivity should be

attained, where it represents the best performance with minimal to almost no waste or disruption (Abdel-

Razek, 2007). The steps to achieve the baseline productivity should be standardized among all operators.

Following that, unnecessary truck idle time could be eliminated as operators have been taught on the proper

way of positioning the truck for ease of movement at the cut and fill area. For illustration purpose,

supposedly, the maximum output truck would have done the work with minimum to almost no idle time.

Hence, it is suggested that other truck operators could also perform at the maximum level when work is

standardized and idle time eliminated. Hence, the output of trucks could be levelled up to the highest

production of the day. Ideally, if potential output levelling can be achieved following each months maximum

production with no machine breakdown, the operation can be completed by the 5th day in December. Even

though it does not seem to be much, relatively it could reduce up to 12 operation days.

Overview on the Proposed Improvement Strategies

In order to put all the improvement options into perspective, an Ideal Map is presented in Figure

7.7 with the expected productivity and environmental performance improvements (shown in Table 7.7). The

ideal map is drawn over the current map to envisage the elements to be removed and improved. All the

expected to be eliminated (shown as cross in the ideal map) elements is envisioned as a result of having

proper preventive maintenance (elimination of downtime and frequency of downtime), standardized work

(elimination of the 5 minutes between task), using pull system to replace push system and adding 5 to 8

number of trucks. On the other hand, improvement (shown as oval in ideal map) is expected for the

productive times of each process when work standardization is being implemented. The plan for

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improvement is preferred by first removing time and resource waste through the addition of trucks. This is

followed by stabilisation of production as discussed in the current step by addressing the issue of

maintenance and operator efficiency. The first solution could be applied to solve issues during construction

itself as VSM provides an instant recognition of waste. The second solution which is based on variability of

output might require a longer period of observation as patterns of output needs to be discovered. Overall,

proposed strategies should be implemented progressively towards reaching the ideal state where the

concept of Kaizen is to be practiced in aim to continuously improve the value stream towards pursuing

perfection.

Figure 7.7 Ideal Map

Table 7.7 Proposed Outcome

1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Month Current no. of Cumulative Maximum Cumulative With 3 added Cumulative no.
trip no. of trip productivity truck (x1.6 of of trip with
current trip) added truck
Jun 1435 1435 1467 1467 2347 2347
Jul 5382 6817 7128 8595 11405 13752
Aug 948 7765 1056 9651 1690 15442
Sep 685 8450 768 10419 1229 16671
Oct 1923 10373 2443 12862 3909 19184 5th day Oct
Nov 3514 13887 4394 17256 7030
Dec 5289 19176 6596 5th day Dec 10554
R Factor
Month May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
% rain monthly 0.065 0.060 0.060 0.060 0.075 0.095 0.110 0.145
Cumulated % rain 0.39 0.455 0.515 0.575 0.65 0.745 0.855 1.0
Before improvement (1.000-0.39)*16,500 = 10,065 MJ.mm/ha.yr.
After improvement (0.745-0.39)*16,500 =5,857.5 MJ.mm/ha.yr.

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For this study, the combined approach could result in the project completing by the 5th day of

operation in October and can be viewed in Column 6 and 7 of Table 7.7. This time reduction could

consequently provide an R factor of 5857.5 MJ.mm/ha.yr with 42% positive improvement. The combined

approach also resulted in changes to cost requirement and this is represented in Table 7.8 where cost for

the additional hire of equipment is given. Further reduction in duration due to the stabilisation effort could

reduce the duration to 43 days that relatively results in lower cost compared to the original setting and the

setting with only improvements of adding trucks (Refer to Table 7.7). The proposed integration has received

the acknowledgement from the site personnel as they found this integration interesting because they have

never thought of managing both aspects of production and environment concurrently. They also mentioned

that the strategies are certainly beneficial as it is proven to improve the production factors of time and cost,

besides the reduced risk of sediment pollution. Furthermore, they also commended on the ease of applying

the method, especially on improving the earthworks operation. The operation which involves less trades is

definitely a plus point as it could facilitate the motion of changing the current management system.

Table 7.8 Direct cost of Equipment Hire

Equipment Daily rate Before improvement After improvement


(RM) No. Days Hire Cost No. Days Hire Cost
Truck 500 5 75 187500 8 43 172000
Excavator 550 2 82500 2 47300
Compactor 600 1 45000 1 25800
Dozer 650 1 48750 1 27950
Total Cost 363,750 Total Cost 273,050

7.5 Conclusion

This study has developed a clean-lean method in order to demonstrate the application of the proposed

integration in Chapter 3 towards improving the proximal factors that affects the production and

environmental performance of earthworks operation. The integration between lean and clean has shown a

great potential to benefit both the production (time and cost) and environmental (sediment pollution)

performance of an earthwork operation. However, the various steps involved in the method could contain

certain limitations with some worth mentioning. The calculation for number of trucks has been given in a

deterministic manner, whereas earthworks itself is dynamic with various interaction between factors. This

is well understood by the authors but to delve into the subject of deterministic and stochastic will divert the

original intent of this study, which is to explore the subject matter and propose opportunities to identify and

162
act on production and environmental waste in construction. Nonetheless, this limitation creates a window

of opportunity for future studies by taking stochastic variables and computer simulation into consideration.

In addition, the proposed solution is specifically to address issues in the case under study. Hence, solutions

may vary depending on different cases as every construction project is unique. Hence, more studies should

be done to test the applicability of this method in various industry settings.

Theoretically, this study has filled in the gap of knowledge where previously, limited studies have

been found to integrate the concept of lean and clean comprehensively. The proposed integration benefits

the academia as this initial attempt of integration opens up various opportunities to further advance the

proposed integration. This has also contributed to the body of knowledge for the individual concept of lean

and clean. For lean, the integration has advanced its original production-based functionalities. For clean,

the integration has remedied some grey areas within the concept, especially on process modification.

In the practical world, the clean-lean method could assist practitioners in viewing the importance of

production and environmental measures simultaneously, so that imbalance treatments of the two different

dimensions could be reduced. Furthermore, the techniques introduced could assist practitioners to identify

their inefficiencies in a more systematic manner whether it is for a short term solution by identifying waste

using VSM or long term-based by observing the variability in output. Overall, this integration could benefit

the construction industry in specific and people at the receiving end in general.

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7.7 Chapter Appendix
Example of computation steps for the Rainfall Erosivity R factor is given as follows:

Step 1: The area studied is located in the state of Pahang. The Rainfall Erosivity value for this site is

between 16, 000 to 17, 000 MJ.mm/ha.yr. This figure could be found in the Pahang State Isohyet Map,

given in DID (2010). Based on the site location, the average rainfall erosivity value of 16, 500 MJ.mm/ha.yr

is selected to represent the annual R factor.

Step 2: The monthly modification factor (% rain monthly) to calculate the adjusted R factor is given in

Table 1. This is required as the R given in Step 1 is not monthly based. The monthly modification factor

can be referred to in DID (2010). The cumulative value of the % rain was calculated from the month of

January but only values for the affected month is shown here. The short term based R factor can be

calculated by multiplying the cumulative rainfall for the affected month with the annual R factor selected in

Step 1.

Table 1 R Factor Computation

Month May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

% Rain Monthly 0.065 0.060 0.060 0.060 0.075 0.095 0.110 0.145

Cumulated % Rain 0.39 0.455 0.515 0.575 0.65 0.745 0.855 1.000

R for 7 months (1.000-0.425)*16,500 = 10,065 MJ.mm/ha.yr.

(Before clean-lean improvement)

Step 3: The lower value of the modified R factor for after clean-lean improvement suggests a lower soil

erosion rate due to rainfall. Hence, the reduction in time land being left opened could reduce the risk of

sediment pollution.

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CHAPTER 8

CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

8.1 Introduction

This chapter is the final chapter of this doctoral thesis. The function of this chapter is to conclude the study

by providing the achievements of the research objectives, highlight the significance of this study and to

acknowledge the limitations of this study. Furthermore, recommendations for future research will be

provided and the chapter will be wrapped-up with a summary.

8.2 Achievement of Research Objectives

8.2.1 Objective 1: Identification and Categorization on the Causes of Site Water Pollution into

Distal and Proximal Factors

This objective has been addressed in Chapter 2 of this thesis. The chapter has first identified the causes

of site water pollution from a theoretical as well as industry perspective. For the theoretical aspect,

systematic review has been used to identify the causes of site water pollution methodically. Previous studies

have not been conducted in such a way with data commonly represented in a narrative form. For the

industry input, in-depth interview has been carried out among industry experts that consist of environmental

consultant, constructor and local authorities. Comparison between the different means of attaining data

highlights the focus of theory on the immediate causes of water pollution which are runoff, erosion and

sediment whereas response from the industry are more inclined to relate the causes to the actions that

might have triggered the aforementioned processes that leads to site water pollution. Nonetheless, the

remaining causes identified in theory besides the aforementioned processes are similar to the ones

mentioned in the interview and all causes are collated into one charter and established as the causes of

site water pollution.

The established causes are further categorized into distal or proximal causes of site water pollution.

This categorization is essential in order to tackle both the direct and indirect sources of problem for the

solution to be holistic. In reference to the accident causation model developed by Suraji et al. (2001), the

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definition of proximal and distal factor have been borrowed and adapted into the current study by

recognizing the proximal and distal factors of site water pollution. The categorization of the causes of site

water pollution into the two categories by building it on the accident causation model is an original

contribution of knowledge not only for construction site water pollution but also the environmental studies

in the field of construction management. This categorization allows the realization that the causes of water

pollution could originate from parties other than the directly linked contracting organization.

8.2.2 Objective 2: Demonstration of the Dynamic Interaction between the Distal and Proximal

Factors of Site Water Pollution

This objective has been addressed in Chapter 3 of this thesis. This chapter acts to enhance findings from

the previous chapter by representing it in a Causal Loop Diagram (CLD). The chapter has first represented

the dynamic causal relationship between the proximal and distal factors of site water pollution from the

collated in-depth interview and systematic review data. Then, it is followed by stage 2 where a case study

has been conducted to verify the causal findings of the collated data as well as the use of CLD using data

from a case study. From the result, it is shown that the dynamic representation of the causal factors differ

from the representation in the linear form, given in Chapter 2. The emphasis on the distal factors identified

from the CLD shows the criticality of managing the causal factors at its source. Management of the distal

factors will enable reduction in the domino effect, consequently reducing the risk of site water pollution.

This chapter has provided an original contribution to knowledge by representing the causal factors

of site water pollution in a CLD where it is a new scientific establishment in the field of site water pollution.

Previous studies have provided only the linear cause-effect factors without acknowledging the systemic

interaction between those factors. Consequently, this have opened up a new area of study by introducing

system dynamics in preventing or managing pollution in construction. From a practical aspect, the outcome

of this chapter enables industry players to understand, identify and manage the core causes of site water

pollution from a bigger perspective. CLD enables practitioners to narrow down essential factors that should

be enhanced (balancing factor) as well as factors that should be controlled (reinforcing factor), especially

when many different factors are involved. The holistic perspective allows industry players to act proactively

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in solving problems at its core. The CLD could also be adapted and applied to identify the core causes of

other problematic areas towards building a holistic approach to manage problems.

8.2.3 Objective 3: Development of Conceptual Frameworks to Manage Site Water Pollution at the

Planning and Operational Level by Integrating Construction Planning with Water Pollution

Prevention Approaches and Cleaner Production with Lean Production Concept.

This objective has been addressed in Chapter 4 of this thesis. Two theoretical frameworks that aim to

manage the production and environmental aspects of construction at different levels of construction, i.e.

planning and operational work stage have been established. The first framework, which is the integration

of construction planning and water pollution prevention practices, WP3-Construction Planning is applicable

at the planning level of construction. This integration enables contractors to simultaneously plan their

construction elements such as schedule, method and site layout to fulfill both the production (time, cost and

quality) and environmental (sediment pollution) aspect. The second framework is applicable at the

operational level where two different concepts have been integrated, which are Lean Production and

Cleaner Production (Clean-Lean). The Clean-Lean integration allows practitioners to manage the

production and environmental measures during the operational stage of construction.

The established theoretical frameworks are original contribution to knowledge as there are no

studies found on explicitly making the integration between construction management and water pollution

prevention as well as clean-lean integration. The proposed integration seals the gap in knowledge and the

application of both frameworks would benefit the construction at the planning and operational stage where

both measures of production and environment will be of concern with seamless improvements expected in

both aspects.

8.2.4 Objective 4: Development of an Industry Enhanced Integration of Water Pollution Preventive

Practices (WP3) with Construction Planning Elements Framework

This objective has been addressed in Chapter 5 of this thesis. A theoretical-practical framework of

integration between construction planning and water pollution prevention practices has been developed.

This chapter is the industry validation of the theoretical framework proposed in Chapter 4. The findings

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suggest that WP3 is related to Construction Planning components and the seamless integration between

both elements lead to the establishment of prevention-based site water pollution strategies.

This pioneer integration between construction planning and prevention approaches for site water

pollution is an original contribution of knowledge where no prior research has been conducted in regards

to this matter. Previously, construction planning has always been planned as a stand-alone subject but

recently, the health and safety sector has integrated the subject of safety into construction planning so that

both measures could be planned and executed simultaneously. Nonetheless, the distinct differences

between construction planning and environment, especially site water pollution has caused both elements

to be planned in isolation. This chapter has provided validation to the theoretical framework and the

agreement from industry players on the practical possibility to integrate both dimensions. In practice,

outcome of the integration could increase contractors awareness of their planning for construction whereby

they could be involved more proactively in planning for their construction by considering also the prevention

techniques of site water pollution. The seamless planning could simultaneously kill two birds with one stone

by potential achievement of both production and environmental measures. This integration could also be

beneficial to local authorities in regards to their guideline and standards where it shows a more explicit

integration method to contractors. In summary, this chapter has provided a prevention-based solution to

manage production and the environmental factor at the construction planning stage.

8.2.5 Objective 5: Development of a Clean-Lean Approach to Manage Distal Factors of Site Water

Pollution

This objective has been addressed in Chapter 6 of this thesis. This study has provided a conceptual

systemic view of the cause-effect relationship between administrative process inefficiencies, lean waste,

production (time) and the environmental (sediment pollution) variable using a system dynamic tool called

Causal Loop Diagram (CLD). Furthermore, the chapter has developed a modified Value Stream-Process

Map (VS-PM) with added functions of CLD to improve both the production and environmental variable in a

construction project. This chapter acts to validate the use of CLD as well as the clean-lean integration. This

chapter is perceived as the solution to distal factors of site water pollution through the use of clean-lean

approach.

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This chapter is an original contribution to knowledge as there were no previous attempt found on

providing a systemic linkage between administrative process inefficiencies, lean waste, production (time)

and the environmental (sediment pollution) variable. In addition to that, the developed method of modified

Value Stream-Process Map (VS-PM) with added functions of CLD provides a new and unique perspective

on the use of lean to clean an operation. In the past, minimal work has been done to utilize the CLD in lean

improvement efforts but in this study, the versatility of CLD has been portrayed when it has been used to

enhance the functionalities of the VS-PM. Besides the common performance metrics used to measure

production from lean perspective, this study has also established an environmental metric that is unique to

this study, which is the method to measure the environmental performance of site sediment pollution. As

site sediment pollution can be affected by many different factors, this chapter has successful developed a

specific relevant metric to address the environmental measure for this doctoral thesis.

From the practical aspect, this study could benefit the construction industry, particularly the public

sector as they also do play a role in determining the smooth flow of a project. Local authorities deal with

administrative processes such as permit approvals and if delayed, it might hinder the work progress at site.

The proposed use of VS-PM with CLD could provide means for governmental organization to streamline

their administrative processes. The addition of CLD allows practitioner to identify the core cause of their

problem and easily identify a solution to attack the problem at its source. The positive improvements could

relatively translate to better production and environmental performance during construction.

8.2.6 Objective 6: Development of a Clean-Lean Approach to Manage Proximal Factors of Site

Water Pollution

This objective has been addressed in Chapter 7 of this thesis. The study has developed and demonstrated

the use of clean-lean method for earthwork operation in order to reduce the risk of site sediment pollution,

consequently improving also the production factors. This chapter validates the use of clean-lean integration,

as discussed conceptually in Chapter 3.

The clean-lean method proposed to improve the production and environmental variable related to

the proximal factors in earthworks operation is an original contribution to the body of knowledge where in

previous, no research has been done to comprehensively portray the use of clean-lean in improving an

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earthwork operation from the perspective of site water pollution. In addition, the demonstration of the use

of different tools, especially to cater for micro and macro level operational improvement using VSM and

variability concept provides an enhancement to the common approach of identifying waste. In addition to

the integration, the linkage has also contributed to advance the knowledge of each concept where

environment has been added into the LP concept while CP has been enhanced of its production factor by

using LP.

In a practical world, the simple representation of the clean-lean method could attract contractors to

apply the approach in their respective projects. The integration could also enable contractors to understand

the relationship between production and environmental performance and how they can be improved

simultaneously. The systematic steps proposed could help contractors to plan their operational works to

achieve dual goals which are production and environmental goal and it also consist of continuous

improvement tools to monitor and provide remedy to the observed deficiencies for short term (VSM) and

long term (variability) solution. Overall, this integration could benefit the construction industry in specific and

people at the receiving end in general.

8.3 Value and Significant of the Research

This research is valuable as current construction is striving to reduce their footprint on the environment.

Numerous control actions have been developed and implemented to reduce the impacts of site produced

water pollution on the environment. Nonetheless, the built and installation of control facilities do come with

cost, resource requirement as well as effort by all parties, especially the constructing team. Even with the

control facilities, sediment pollution could also occur when unexpected rainfall event takes place, faultiness

and overloading of the facilities. All in all, control facilities can only do so much to manage the already

produced pollution. This study recognizes the risk endured when basing the environmental management

solely on the end-of-pipe system. Hence, the initial idea to ground the current study of managing site

sediment pollution on the concept of prevention. The concept of prevention will apply source reduction

where the sources of pollution will be reduced and prevented, which will autonomously reduce the risk of

pollution.

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Prevention is a concept under environmental management system. In order to apply the approach

in isolation, proactive initiative by the construction organization is required. Nonetheless, concern in

construction often falls back on production factors such as time, cost and quality. The additional quest of

having to think and plan for proactive environmental application of prevention could create an additional

burden to the contractor, which is what the current study has worked to improve. This study has developed

an integration between the distinct aspects of environmental concept of prevention with construction

management. The integration has been developed and demonstrated throughout the chapters under Phase

2, which is the proposed solution phase.

The value and significance of this study is not only from the aspect of proposed solution but also

from the initial stage itself, which is phase 1, problem formulation. Previous studies have commonly

identified the causes of water pollution without getting in detail on how those causes function and relate to

each other. Realizing the deficiencies found on previous works, this study has developed a systematic

approach to understand the causes of water pollution as the solution for the causes should be well justified

and relatable. Due to that, this study has triangulated data on the causes of water pollution through

systematic review, in-depth interview and case study. This study has also categorized the causes of water

pollution in accordance to an accident causation model, which has not been explicitly done in previous

studies. The common linear representation of data has also been replaced with the use of a system dynamic

tool called Causal Loop Diagram (CLD). The use of CLD to discover the relationship between different

factors allow systemic view and impact of all potential reasons. The unique representation of the factors by

first categorizing it into distal and proximal factors and subsequently portraying the factors in a dynamic

way using CLD is an original contribution of knowledge. In summary, the value of this study lies within both

of the contributions in problem and solution formulation. Further discussion on the value and significant of

this study is provided in the following sub-sections.

8.3.1 Theoretical contribution of the study

The theoretical contribution of this study stems from the very beginning, which is problem formulation to the

proposed solution. For problem identification, this study has filled the gap of knowledge in providing

comprehensive causes of site water pollution, which is further categorized into distal and proximal factors

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by grounding it to the concept applied in accident causation model. This rather unique attempt to categorize

the causes enables a larger perspective in identifying the core cause for water pollution so that the proposed

solution could be holistic and preventive in nature. Moving from that, the common linear representation on

the causes of pollution also does not provide a systemic cause-effect relationship between the distal and

proximal factors. Hence, this study has contributed by utilizing a system dynamic tool, CLD to portray the

systemic relationship between the distal and proximal factors of site water pollution. The use of CLD in

identifying the core causes of a problem has been implemented in areas such as productivity improvement

as well as health and safety but none on pollution in construction, specifically water pollution.

For the proposed solution, two major establishments from this study has contributed to the current

body of knowledge. The first major contribution is the integration of water pollution prevention practices with

construction planning. This integration is one of its kind where the prevention approaches for site water

pollution is sought through in order to identify its relevance with construction planning elements of schedule,

method and site layout. This solution is intended to be applied by the constructing team during the

construction planning stage in order to proactively plan the construction alongside the concern on sediment

pollution but without additional hassle. Previously, both elements of construction planning and water

pollution prevention practices, if any, have been dealt in isolation. For site water pollution, it is common that

the approach used to manage it is through the application of control facilities rather than prevention. This

idealistic solution could assist in a paradigm shift towards applying preventive approaches that could be

planned seamlessly with construction where the results would be mutual benefit to the production and

environmental factor without having one aspect treated more than the other.

The second major establishment is the integration between two different concepts, which are Lean

Production (LP) and Cleaner Production (CP). The proposed integration is to be applied at the operational

level to improve both aspects of production and the environment. Previously, no explicit attempt has been

found in integrating the concepts of LP and CP. This study realized the potential of the integration between

both concepts as they have similar relevance and could complement each other well. The significant

identification is where lean enables clean. The benefits of the integration was further demonstrated in detail

of its application in managing both the distal and proximal factors of site water pollution.

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In addition to the major establishments, the study has also contributed to the method development

for the clean-lean approach. The contribution to cater both distal and proximal factors are rather different

as in the case of distal factors, it is essential to show the relationship of the factor with site water pollution

as the relationship is not apparent. Hence, the clean-lean based solution for the distal factor studied, in this

case administration inefficiencies, has been enhanced with the utilization of CLD. The addition of CLD has

provided an added-value to the common techniques perceived in lean and clean. Environmental

performance is also an essential part of proving the benefits of the clean-lean method besides the common

measurement of time and cost that represents the production factor. Previous studies have established

common environmental measurements such as carbon emission and energy consumption but there is none

found in measuring site water pollution with regards to the production factors. For site sediment pollution,

common methods of measuring water pollution would be through water sampling to test elements such as

suspended solid and turbidity (Pitt et al. 2007). However, those monitoring and control type of application

would be impractical when it is at the planning or operational stage where improvements were to be made

with changes in time. This study has proposed an indicator for site sediment pollution, which is the

measurement of Rainfall Erosivity R factor which involves the component of time, which is functional during

the application of clean-lean. As for the clean-lean approach applied to manage the proximal factors of site

water pollution, a rather different solution to the distal factors has been proposed. Commonly, Value Stream

Map (VSM) will be used to identify the causes of inefficiencies in a system but in this study, the VSM will

be used at the micro level of operation in order to identify waste for short time period while an output bar

chart will be drawn for the operation that functions to identify the variability by recognizing the Co-efficient

of variation (CoV) between the daily outputs. This will be used to view the macro perspective and will assist

the functionalities of the VSM for continuous improvement. Generally, this study has provided a theoretical

contribution in major aspects of this doctoral thesis.

8.3.2 Practicality of the study

Even though this study is an initial attempt in exploring the application of environmental prevention

approaches within the subject of construction management, the findings have been complemented with the

practical aspect, in regards to the requirements of the industry. In the phase of problem identification, the

use of CLD in recognizing the relationship between factors of site water pollution has been triangulated

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using methods of in-depth interview, systematic review and case study. Hence, the practical applicability of

this tool has been shown from a theory as well as the practical point of view.

For the two major solutions, the practical applicability of the first solution, which is the integration

of water pollution preventive practices with construction planning has been verified among industry players

by the conduct of semi-structured interviews. It is found that all elements of construction planning which are

time schedule, method and site layout could be seamless planned to cater for production as well as water

pollution prevention purpose. Nonetheless, it is found that the time schedule has the most connectivity and

should be the first step taken to incorporate the environmental aspect at the construction planning stage.

For the second integration of clean-lean approach, the proposed framework has been put to test by

conducting two case studies to demonstrate the application of the approach. Results from both the case

study that cater both proximal and distal factors of site water pollution provide convincing results where it

could benefit both the production and environmental factors in construction.

8.3.3 Usability of the study

The outcome of this doctoral study is to highlight more on the approach rather than the result. In relation to

that, the approach of identifying the root cause using CLD could be expanded to other aspects or sectors

where it necessitates the root identification of problem. From an environmental aspect, it provides the

foundation to be based upon, towards achieving prevention rather than control-based system. This

technique provides a complete view of the entire system where the cause-effect relationship in the system

could be easily identified for improvement.

For the WP3-Construction Planning integration, the approach could be implemented at the

construction planning stage through proactive planning in order to reap the benefits from the production

and environmental aspect. For the clean-lean integration, the usability of the method has been

demonstrated in detail in Chapter 6 and 7. In order to tackle the distal factor of site water pollution, the use

of CLD in complementing the modified VS-PM has been demonstrated using a case study where the

method is found to benefit the parties involved, especially the often side-lined functions of local authority.

Similarly, the clean-lean integration has been demonstrated to satisfy the proximal factors where detailed

usability of the method has been shown and validated using a case study. Therefore, the approaches

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developed in this study are usable at the different levels of construction, which are the planning and

operational level.

8.3.4 Reliability and Validity of the study

According to Abowitz and Toole (2010), using multiple methods such as interviews, observation and

archival data enables the check and balance of strength and weakness of each approach, which further

allows convergence on similar pattern or result. The use of different methods could form a triangulation

where it is an approach to conduct research by simultaneously applying both qualitative and quantitative

approaches to strengthen academic proposition (Fellow and Liu, 2008). Triangulation is also beneficial as

a means to validate research outcome when qualitative methods are utilized (Walker, 1997; Denzin, 2009).

In order to assure the reliability and validity of the findings in Phase 1, data has been obtained from different

methods which consist of systematic review, in-depth interview and case study towards identifying the

causes of water pollution along with its categorization. All the methods have been conducted by following

detailed protocol and procedures which are well documented. Findings of those methods converge in

similar causes of site water pollution that consist of distal and proximal factors.

For works in Phase 2 which deals mostly with the establishment of theoretical framework and its

verification through semi-structured interviews and case studies, the data were also collected by following

proper protocol and procedures. The internal validity of the frameworks have been accomplished by doing

pattern matching and explanation building, which is followed by external validity by demonstrating the

application using real case studies and semi-structured interview. In order to satisfy construct validity, case

study will be based on the theoretical framework with results verified using interviews. The use of specific

and systematic protocols in deriving the findings show that the data collection method is reliable and abide

to the construct validity. The data collected during case study has also been triangulated by the means of

observation, interview with several different personnel in the project and also hard evidence such as

archival data (site diary, project documents/ drawings). As for the developed approach, the internal validity

is established when findings from the semi-structured interview and case studies are being referred back

to the experts in order to get their feedback on the proposed solutions. The external validity of those

approaches has been satisfied by having an in-depth case study database where it could be easily referred

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for subsequent application in other areas of study. However, further research could be conducted with

multiple case studies to further prove the external validity of the findings. Reliability of the case study can

be provided with a documented methodology of the case study that allows other researchers to access the

document.

8.4 Research Limitations

This doctoral study has been conducted with meticulous effort but still, there are some inherent limitations

of this study that should be mentioned for the purpose of future improvement and research. The research

limitation identified from the study is given as follows:

1) For Phase 1, the qualitative study which is based on a small sample size of in-depth interview may

represent a limitation in this research. The difficulty in obtaining respondents as well as time

constraint has gave way to this limitation. Nonetheless, a triangulation-based research approach

has been used to complement the limitation where findings are enhanced with data gathered from

different sources such as systematic review and case study.

2) For the conceptual integration between WP3-Construction Planning, the limitation lies in the real

project application of the framework. The theoretical framework has been verified by panel of

experts from the industry through semi-structured interview. However, as this study is more focused

on proposing solutions for the problems formulated in the first phase, the conception of this

framework is to provide a holistic solution for the problem by incorporating also construction

planning, besides the subject of attention which is operational improvement. Due to that, the

framework which lacks the application aspect opens up opportunity for subsequent studies to be

conducted on this matter. However, it is important to highlight that this is a conceptual and

exploratory based framework where the aim of this study is not to provide generalization but to

build a conceptual framework to demonstrate the possibility of using construction planning

elements in preventing site runoff and erosion at the initial stage of construction. Hence, future

research is essential to test the application of this framework in a real project, which will be

discussed in Section 8.5.

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3) The clean-lean integration has been demonstrated its usage to address the distal and proximal

factors of site water pollution. The distal factor addressed in this study is the often side-lined

administrative processes that could have effect on site sediment pollution. In terms of administrative

processes, this study has focused on improving the macro aspect of the process. It is essential to

highlight that due to the qualitative nature of this study, the findings could not be generalized.

Nonetheless, the findings did provide a new research avenue that advocates the criticality of

administrative processes in the flow of construction and how it could also affect the relatively distant

factor such as sediment pollution. This study lack the micro aspect of administration such as office

administrative waste which could include error or defect in documentation as well as unnecessary

movement of workers. The purposively developed CLD and VS-PM approach should also be further

tested by applying the developed system into practice, especially in processes involving local

authorities in construction. For the clean-lean method developed for the proximal factor, the various

steps involved in the method could contain certain limitations with some worth mentioning. The

calculation for number of trucks has been given in a deterministic manner, whereas earthworks

itself is dynamic with various interaction between factors. This is well understood by the authors

but to delve into the subject of deterministic and stochastic will divert the original intent of this study,

which is to explore the subject matter and propose opportunities to identify and act on the

production and environmental waste in construction. Nonetheless, this limitation creates a window

of opportunity for future studies by taking stochastic variables and computer simulation into

consideration. In addition, the proposed solution is specifically to address issues in the case under

study. Hence, solutions may vary depending on different cases as every construction project is

unique. Hence, more studies should be done to test the applicability of this method in various

industry settings.

8.5 Recommendations for Future Research

Based on the research findings and limitations, the following suggestion for future research is proposed:

The suggestions provided below applies to enrich the current findings as well as to expand the current

findings into new area of study.

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1) In Phase 1, the problem formulation has been approached using three methods of in-depth

interview, systematic review and case study towards having a triangulation. However, the

current findings could further be made comprehensive by having more respondents for the in-

depth interview. The current findings of portraying the causes of water pollution using CLD,

which is in a qualitative representation could open up a new opportunity to embark the research

involving quantitative values. Hence, the application of system dynamics is recommended by

transforming the current CLD into a system dynamics model. The application of system

dynamics could objectively quantify the effects of each causes towards site water pollution.

2) In Phase 2, the integration of WP3-Construction Planning has been established based on

integrated literature review with input from panel of experts on the subject. The framework

could be strengthened in future research by including also survey on the framework in order to

gather larger sample of respondents. Besides that, subsequent research could focus on

applying the framework in real time project. Detailed procedure of implementation could be

thought of, in order to demonstrate the use of the framework in a system. As for a larger

research opportunity, this framework could be further enhanced by incorporating it with the

practice of Information Technology such as Building Information Modelling. Building

Information Modelling could be used to assist the implementation of the framework as it allows

functions such as 4D or 5D visualization that provides the dimensions of time and cost for ease

of planning. Hence, it could be a subject of interest for researches who are keen to apply the

WP3-Construction planning framework with the support of Building Information Modelling.

3) As for the clean-lean integration, the theoretical framework has been demonstrated its usability

using case studies. For the clean-lean approach in addressing the administrative inefficiencies,

it is proposed that future study should also research on the micro aspect of administration that

analyses office administrative waste. A more detailed look into the administrative waste could

involve operational waste such as defects (document error), overproduction (producing

unrequested work), motion (trips to site) and moving (report routing) (Resetarits, 2012). The

findings of the clean-lean integration could further be strengthened by providing more case

studies as an additional data to support the framework. In addition to that, the data provided in

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the findings are all deterministic in nature. The author understands that construction is dynamic

in nature and therefore, the addition of stochastic value would provide a more realistic figure.

Hence, the current works steps could be improved with the use of construction modelling or

simulations to address the deterministic nature of the current study. Besides that, the current

framework should be put to test in various sectors and situations so that the clean-lean method

could progressively be generalized.

8.6 Summary

This doctoral thesis has provided an original piece of contribution to knowledge by providing a holistic

solution that aims to improve the production and environmental measures at the planning and operational

stage of construction with the ultimate focus of embracing the concept of prevention. The specific

environmental subject of this study is construction site water pollution. The doctoral thesis that begun with

problem formulation and ended with proposed solution has provided a complete preventive approach to

manage site water pollution from the perspective of construction management. This one-of-a-kind attempt

has developed various integration of concepts and methods so that it could be appreciated from the

production and environmental stand-point without involving much additional cost or resources but at the

same time benefits the time, cost, quality and the environmental dimension. This study has also opened up

large windows of opportunities for future research works to take place as this thesis is basically very much

exploratory in nature. The idea of managing construction together with the environment is rather new,

especially from the aspect of site water pollution, which has commonly been managed in isolation through

the use of end-of-pipe systems. It is hoped that findings from this study will be extended beyond the

construction industry by sparking interest from other sectors towards simultaneous accomplishments in the

production and environmental measures.

8.7 References

Abowitz, D. and Toole, T. (2010). "Mixed Method Research: Fundamental Issues of Design, Validity, and

Reliability in Construction Research." J. Constr. Eng. Manage., 10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-

7862.0000026, 108-116.

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Denzin, N. K. 2009. The Research Act, United States of America, Transaction Publishers-Rutgers.

Fellows, R. F. and A. M. M. Liu (2009). Research Methods for Construction, Wiley

Pitt, R., Clark, S.E., Lake, D., 2007. Construction site erosion and sediment controls. DESTech

Publications, Lancaster, PA.

Resetarits, P. J., 2012. The application of lean management principles to fields other than manufacturing.

Proceedings of PICMET '12: Technology Management for Emerging Technologies. Vancouver,

Canada.

Suraji, A., Duff, A. R., Peckitt, S. J., 2001. Development of causal model of construction accident causation.

Journal of Construction Engineering and Management 127, 337-344.

Walker, D. H. T. 1997. Choosing an appropriate research methodology. Construction Management and

Economics. 15(2), pp. 149-159.

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APPENDICES

1. LETTER OF APPROVAL FOR ETHICS APPLICATION

Will be added in.

2. EXAMPLE OF PARTICIPANT INFORMATION SHEET (PIS)

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering


20 Symonds Street Auckland, New Zealand
Telephone 64 9 373 7599 ext 88166; Facsimile 64 9 373 7462

The University of Auckland


Private Bag 92019
Auckland, New Zealand

PARTICIPANT INFORMATION SHEET (Chief Executive Officer)

Research Project Title : Construction Planning: Alternative Method to Construction Site Water

Pollution Management

Researcher : Sheila Belayutham

Degree : Phd (Civil Engineering)

Department : Civil and Environmental Engineering

Research Supervisor : Dr. Vicente Gonzalez

Purpose of this Participant Information Sheet (PIS)

The purpose of this Participant Information Sheet (PIS) is to seek for your permission/authority to approach
employees within your organisation, to request their participation in this research. The project is part of the
Doctor of Philosophy Degree, Civil Engineering, in which the researcher, Sheila Belayutham, is currently
enrolled at The University of Auckland, Civil and Environmental Engineering Department. The interviews
are an important element of this project, which aims to identify ways to manage construction site storm
water runoff using construction planning elements (method, sequence and spatial layout).

Research Background

This research aims to identify alternative methods to manage construction site water pollution by utilizing
construction planning elements such as sequencing, method and spatial layout. Conventional site water
pollution management utilizes structural approach to mitigate runoff from construction sites by implementing
detention pond and sediment control measures. Those methods do not prevent the occurrence of runoff,

186
merely mitigating the problem. Construction management elements could be utilized to prevent and reduce
the runoff from site by doing construction phasing and through appropriate use of equipment. Therefore,
data collection through interview sessions are crucial in fulfilling the objectives of the research, which are
to produce a systematic framework that utilizes construction planning (method, location of temporary
facilities and time planning) for preventing construction site water pollution and to utilize lean techniques in
identifying and improving current inefficient processes (non-value added activities) that produces
production and environmental waste in construction.

Data Collection

Interviews with site personnel are essential for the completion of this research. Generally, the interview
questions will involve subjects on construction site water pollution.

Participation

The intention is that employees from your organization will be invited to take part in one to two interview
sessions that would last approximately one hour per session. Candidates would be selected on the basis
of their knowledge and experience in managing or involvement in construction projects in New Zealand and
Malaysia. Your endorsement will be relayed to the employees who are invited to participate in this research,
but they will still retain their right to decide whether or not to participate. Furthermore, participants will retain
the right to keep their response transcripts restricted from access/review by other members in your
organization (including yourself). The interview will be made only with the consent of the participating
employees. Participants are not allowed to provide any commercially sensitive issues during the interview
sessions.

Data Management

The interview sessions will be audio recorded upon approval from the participants. Participants are allowed
to turn off the recording anytime during the session, without the need to provide any reason. Answers and
data from interviews will be transferred to a draft interview information sheet in electronic format.
Participants are able to review and withdraw the data provided after undertaking the interviews. Upon
request, an electronic document of the draft interview information sheet will be sent by email within two
weeks after the interview for approval. The participants will be given a period of two weeks from the receipt
of document, to respond and edit the transcribed data in order to comply with the organizations
confidentiality requirement. If the participants decide to withdraw, all information provided will be deleted
immediately. The final date for withdrawal is one month from the date of interview. After applying all
modifications requested, a final interview information sheet will be released and used for analysis and
results presentation. All data will be kept in the researchers and research supervisors computer in a secure
manner for a period of six years. After six years, all data will be destroyed through deleting computer files.
All hard copies will be immediately destroyed and draft interview information sheets deleted. The results of
the research will be presented in the form of a written report and conference papers and papers may be
written as outcomes. This will be done in a manner which will not identify any participants or data source
either by name, inference, or implication. Data collected will be coded so that the participants identity is
protected. All results will appear in a generalized format for interpretational purposes only. The final results
will be made available upon your request, but only after completion of the entire research report. I seek
your assurance that participation, or non-participation, will not affect the employment status of the
participants.

187
Queries

Any queries or concerns regarding the research project can be addressed by contacting:

Researcher : Sheila Belayutham

Mobile : 022 1631362

E-mail : sbel594@aucklanduni.ac.nz

Supervisor : Dr. Vicente Gonzalez

Phone : 09 3737599 ext 84106

E-mail : v.gonzalez@auckland.ac.nz

Head of Dept. : Prof. Pierre Quenneville

Phone : 09 3737599 ext 87920

E-mail : p.quenneville@auckland.ac.nz

For any concerns regarding ethical issues you may contact the Chair, The University of Auckland Human
Participants Ethics Committee, The University of Auckland, Research Office, Private Bag 92019, Auckland
1142. Telephone 09 373-7599 ext. 87830/83761. Email: humanethics@auckland.ac.nz

APPROVED BY THE UNIVERSITY OF AUCKLAND HUMAN PARTICIPANTS ETHICS COMMITTEE ON

17th DECEMBER 2012 FOR (3) YEARS FROM 17/12/2012 TO 17/12/2015. REFERENCE NUMBER: 8664

3. EXAMPLE OF CONSENT FORM (CF)

188
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
20 Symonds Street Auckland, New Zealand
Telephone 64 9 373 7599 ext 88166; Facsimile 64 9 373 7462
DEPERTMENT OF CIVIL AND
ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING
The University of Auckland
Private Bag 92019
Auckland, New Zealand

CONSENT FORM (Chief Executive Officer)

THIS FORM WILL BE HELD FOR A PERIOD OF 6 YEARS

Researcher : Sheila Belayutham

Project Title : Construction Planning: Alternative Method to Construction Site Water

Pollution Management

I have read the Participant Information Sheet and understood the nature of the research and why the
participants have been selected. I have also had the opportunity to ask questions and have had them
answered to my satisfaction. I confirm that I hold the appropriate authority to provide consent for the
following statements:

I give permission for employees of my organization to take part in the research.

I give permission for employees of my organization to provide information related to my organization


to support this research. I understand that any such information will be treated confidentially and any
reported information will appear in a general form.

I confirm that the employees participation or non-participation in this research will not, in any way,
affect their employment in my organization.

I understand that employees will retain the right to keep their survey response confidential from me
and other members of my organization.

I know that the data will be analysed by the researcher without the assistance of any third party.

I understand that data will be kept for 6 years, after which they will be destroyed.

I understand that the data from the participants will be stored securely within the university premises
and only the researcher and supervisors can access it.

I understand that the participating employees will have the rights to review a draft report related to the
information they provide to ensure that the information reported satisfies my organizations
confidentiality requirements.

I understand that the interview session will be audio recorded upon receiving consent from them.

I understand that the participants will have the right to turn off the recordings anytime during the
session, without giving any reason.

189
I understand that audio recordings will be transcribed and the participants will be given the permission
to edit their transcript in order to comply with organizations confidentiality requirement, if requested
by them.

I understand that the participants will be given two weeks from the receipt of document, to edit the
transcript to their satisfaction.

I understand the participating employees are free to withdraw their participation in this research at
any time without giving any reasons.

I understand that the participating employees are able to withdraw the data they provide up to one
month after undertaking the survey.

I understand that although data the participants provide will be reported, it will be done in a way that
does not identify the source either by name or inference.

I understand that the participants will not be asked to provide any commercially sensitive issues
during the interview sessions.

I understand that I will be offered a copy of the research report.

Name : ________________________________________

Signature : ____________________________ Date : ___________________________________

Please include your email address in the following space, if you would like to receive a copy of the final
report. _______________________________________

APPROVED BY THE UNIVERSITY OF AUCKLAND HUMAN PARTICIPANTS ETHICS COMMITTEE ON

17th DECEMBER 2012 FOR (3) YEARS FROM 17/12/2012 TO 17/12/2015 REFERENCE NUMBER:8664

190
4. EXAMPLE OF INTERVIEW QUESTIONS

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering


20 Symonds Street Auckland, New Zealand
Telephone 64 9 373 7599 ext 88166; Facsimile 64 9 373 7462
DEPARTMENT OF CIVIL AND
ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING
The University of Auckland
Private Bag 92019
Auckland, New Zealand

INTERVIEW QUESTIONS (Consultants)

The aim of this interview is to identify the LID and erosion sediment preventive principles in managing
construction site water pollution. Thus, the views and experiences of practitioners are valuable in providing
the required information. The interview has been designed to encourage the exploration of key issues raised
in the literature. This agenda will act as a checklist to ensure that relevant issues are being addressed.

The participant will be asked to provide information on the following items:

- Current affiliation.

- Years of experience in issues related to site runoff management.

The following questions will be used to guide the interview:

1) What are the causes of construction site water pollution?

2) Can you please describe the non-structural/ source control LID and erosion sediment approaches
for managing site runoff?

3) In your opinion, can the non-structural/source control LID and erosion sediment practices be
categorised into the 3 dimensions of construction planning (time scheduling, choice of construction
method and site layout)?

Next questions will focus on the 3 dimensions of construction planning and its ability to reduce site runoff.

4) In your opinion, how could deficiencies in construction schedule negatively affect the site runoff?

5) Apart from proper phasing and timing of construction, what other elements that constitute a proper
construction schedule for site water pollution prevention?

6) In your opinion, how could certain construction methods negatively affect the site runoff, erosion
and sediment?

7) Apart from reducing soil compaction activities, minimise excavation, care when removing existing
trees, restrict trenching and choose lighter weight equipment, what other pre cautionary measures
should be taken in selecting appropriate method to prevent site runoff, erosion and sediment?

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8) In your opinion, how could certain arrangements of site layouts negatively affect site runoff, erosion
and sediment?

9) Apart from reducing size of facilities, protect sensitive areas, minimise site disturbance, install pre
caution signs, limit accessibility and provide site plan, what other precautionary measures should
be taken in designing a site layout?

10) From your experiences, how do common contractors manage site runoff, erosion and sediment?

11) Can proper planning of the construction elements (schedule, construction method, site layout)
benefit in reducing runoff, erosion and sediment at construction sites?

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Thank you so much for your time and cooperation

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