Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/220477
Title: EXAMINING ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION IN CONSTRUCTION: DRIVERS, BARRIERS AND IMPACTS
Authors: LEE YONG KIAN IVAN
Keywords: 2020-2021
Building
Bachelor's
BACHELOR OF SCIENCE (PROJECT AND FACILITIES MANAGEMENT)
Hwang Bon Gang
Automation
Construction
Robotics
Issue Date: 28-May-2021
Citation: LEE YONG KIAN IVAN (2021-05-28). EXAMINING ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION IN CONSTRUCTION: DRIVERS, BARRIERS AND IMPACTS. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: With the advancement towards the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) which subsequently gave rise to Construction 4.0, new opportunities will be uncovered integrating advanced technologies, both digital and physical to create more efficient production, business models and value chains in the construction and built environment sector. Related studies on robotics and automation in the past have always focused on the technical capability of robotics and automation, its research and development, the various examples of applications in construction, as well as the benefits and limitations it face in the construction industry. However, Construction 4.0 led by the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) being a major drive for the adoption of robotics and automation were given too little attention. Not only that, robotics and automation are being categorised as disruptive technologies but, little research has been done to investigate the level of impact robotics and automation can have on construction performance as well as the disruptive changes to expect following the adoption of robotics and automation in the construction industry. It is therefore, an integral part to bridge the knowledge gap by not only exploring how robotics and automation can be successfully implemented into the traditional construction production process, but also understand the complementary disruptive impacts and changes robotics and automation may have on construction operations and performance together with how industry players are perceiving them. Hence, this study seeks to investigate the knowledge gap starting with the level of implementation of construction robotics and automation in the construction industry, assess the potential impacts on construction performance following the implementation of robotics and automation applications, analyse possible influencing factors that may drive or impede the implementation of robotics and automation in construction of which includes the disruptive impacts it may bring, as well as ascertain suitable strategies that may help to convince and promote the adoption of robotics and automation in the construction industry. Based on the literature review conducted, Construction 4.0 led by the Fourth Industrial Revolution, 4IR (Industry 4.0) was found to be a major drive for the digitalisation of the construction industry hence, the need for the adoption of robotics and automation in construction. It was also found that the adoption of construction robotics and automation will bring about complementary disruptive changes to the construction industry on the whole. Accompanied with, are several other influencing factors such as technological, economic, industry, social and cyber security for example, of which a total of 9 benefits, 34 barriers, 14 disruptive impacts and 18 strategies were identified and validated by industry professionals through pre-survey interviews. A survey questionnaire was subsequently designed to be disseminated to professionals within the construction industry who were identified as target respondents. After which, the collected survey results were then analysed with the utilisation of non-parametric analysis tools to determine the significance of the data as well as identify any disparity of perception between various respondent and organisation groups. In order to further justify the results obtained from the data analysis, industry professionals were again invited to attend a post-survey interview to provide their viewpoint in their perspective. From the analysis of the survey results, most of the respondents concur in view that the current construction industry still faces low level of automation and robotisation as well as high resistance towards the adoption of construction robotics and automation. However, most respondents are optimistic in their view that the adoption of construction robotics and automation would improve overall productivity of construction processes and would indeed benefit the construction industry in the long run. The analysis also indicates that most of the respondents are agreeable that robotics and automation will bring about substantial improvements in construction performance such as cost, productivity, schedule, safety, and overall organisational performance. The top three benefits in driving the adoption of robotics and automation in the construction industry were found to be (1) Time saving, (2) Improved level of productivity and quality, and (3) Enhanced working conditions and site safety. However, the top three barriers were identified as (1) Increased implementation and capital cost, (2) Lack of practical applications of robotics and automation in the construction industry, and (3) Lack of clear value proposition to accurately predict the extent of benefits and economic gains of construction robotics and automation. The top three disruptive impacts were found to be (1) Achieving superior quality and productivity, (2) Construction robotics and automation will significantly accelerate construction process, and (3) The application of construction robotics and automation technologies will become ubiquitous. Finally, the top three recommended strategies to increase the adoption of robotics and automation in construction are (1) Implement more platforms and incentive programs for training and upskilling of industry professionals, (2) Offer employees for training and upskilling courses to provide knowledge and literacy on robotics and automation, and (3) Comparative advantages given to organisations adopting robotics and automation for tenders. This study has shown that in order for a successful digitalisation of the construction industry, all stakeholders including the government, industry, organisations and individuals must adopt an open-mindset and work together towards embracing the disruptive changes in order to increase the acceptance of robotics and automation within the industry. Through the analysis of this research, the findings presented in this study provides valuable information for stakeholders in the construction industry to consider when evaluating their plan for the adoption of robotics and automation moving forward.
URI: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/220477
Appears in Collections:Bachelor's Theses

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