The management of construction processes in developing countries : a case study of the Ethiopian Roads Authority

Doctoral Thesis


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University of Cape Town

The delivery of construction projects in Ethiopian is accused of non-optimum performance. With this poor performance of the delivery of projects as the instigator, this study set major objectives of exploring the current practices of the management of the construction processes in Ethiopia and investigating the major drawbacks of the practices as seen in the context of 'accepted practices' and theoretical principles. As part of the approaches to achieve these objectives, the study first developed a conceptual framework for improved project performance. It identified the processes executed in project delivery, the resources used in executing these processes and the governance/management system through which the processes and resources are brought together and managed; contextualized to the peculiar conditions under which the projects are implemented, as the basic pillars of construction project management. Then, the study used the concepts and principles associated with these basic pillars and 'accepted practices' in the management of the construction processes both to inform the data collection and analysis and serve as reference against which the Ethiopian practices are compared. The study adopted post-positivist inclined case study research methodology whereby the Ethiopian Roads Authority's (ERA's) project delivery approaches are taken as case in point. It employed data collected from documents and through interviews. Using content analysis technique, the study explored and evaluated ERA's project delivery processes and their management. It also explored and analyzed the major challenges experienced by ERA in its project deliveries.