Due to their size and complexity, most construction projects would appear to offer a wide potential for MS/OR applications. For example, the standard critical path models of PERT, CPM and precedence diagrams are particularly successful in construction. However, apart from these models, we find that MS/OR are not often used in construction. Schelle (1990, p. 111) summarizes, “In project management the large number of publications about operations research topics contrast to the small number of real applications.”
Here, we review three major areas of construction where MS/OR applications could occur — job estimation and tendering, project planning, and project management and control. Factors inhibiting the application of MS/OR in construction projects are discussed and possible future developments are canvassed.
JOB ESTIMATION AND TENDERING
Some MS/OR models have been applied to job estimation. Job estimation requires trade-offs between time and cost. Early MS/OR work assumed direct...
- Bennett, J. and Ormerod, R. N. (1984). “Simulation applied to construction projects,” Construction Management and Economics, 2, 225–263.Google Scholar
- Brandon, P. S. (1990). “The development of an expert system for the strategic planning of construction projects,” Construction Management and Economics, 8, 285–300.Google Scholar
- Cusack, M. M. (1985). “A simplified approach to the planning and control of cost and project duration,” Construction Management and Economics, 3, 183–198.Google Scholar
- Perry, C. and Iliffe, M. (1983). “Earthmoving on construction sites,” Interfaces, 13(1), 79–84.Google Scholar
- Russell, J. S. (1992). “Decision models for analysis and evaluation of construction contractors,” Construction Management and Economics, 10, 185–202.Google Scholar
- Schelle, H. (1990). “Operations research and project management past, present and future,” in Reschke, H. and Schelle, H., eds., Dimensions of Project Management, Springer-Verlag, Berlin.Google Scholar
- Scott, D. (1987). “Multi-objective economic evaluation of minor roading projects,” Construction Management and Economics, 5, 169–181.Google Scholar
- Slowinski, R. and Weglarz, R., eds. (1989). Advances in Project Scheduling Studies in Production and Engineering Economics 9, Amsterdam. Google Scholar
- Touran A. and Toshyuki, A. (1987). “Simulation of tunnelling operations,” Construction Engineering and Management, 113, 554–568.Google Scholar
- Wager, D. M. and Pittard, S. J. (1991). Using Computers in Project Management, Construction Industry Computing Association, Cambridge, England.Google Scholar