ITcon Vol. 12, pg. 231-249,

Critical success factors for construction ICT projects – some empirical evidence and lessons for emerging economies

submitted:February 2006
revised:September 2006
published:March 2007
editor(s):Serpell A and Barai S V
authors:Onuegbu O Ugwu, Director
JU Consulting & Research Services Limited, Hong Kong SAR, China

Mohan M Kumaraswamy, Associate Professor
Centre for Infrastructure & Construction Industry Development, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
summary:The application of information and communication technology (ICT) in the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) sector has evolved over several years. Organisations continue to invest in ICT in their bid to harness technology and streamline business processes. However, construction organisations continue to experience perennial problems that militate against successful implementation of IT projects. This results from cultural, organisational and other operational constraints. This paper reports on research conducted in Hong Kong SAR China, over the period 2000-2004. The research methods include a combination of industry surveys, qualitative deductive analysis, and interactions on some case study projects (i.e. interviews, in-depth discussions on, and analysis of ‘successful and failed’ projects) with different levels of construction personnel in Hong Kong SAR. Analysis shows that there are distinct characteristics and features of projects that determine their success or failure, starting from even the conceptualisation and initiation stages, and that the projects have different points of failure. The paper identifies two trajectories of IT project success and failure in construction, and the critical success factors that could be useful for IT applications in emerging economies, drawing on the personal experiences of the authors in emerging economies in Nigeria and Sri Lanka. It discuses the findings from the HKSAR study, and give recommendations in the context of learning lessons from ICT initiatives in order to improve applications in emerging economies.
keywords:ICT project management, critical success factors (CSF), evidence-based research, organisational behaviour, human resource management, developing countries, complex adaptive system.
full text: (PDF file, 0.167 MB)
citation:Ugwu O O and Kumaraswamy M M (2007). Critical success factors for construction ICT projects – some empirical evidence and lessons for emerging economies, ITcon Vol. 12, Special issue Construction information technology in emerging economies, pg. 231-249,