Critical analysis for big data studies in construction: significant gaps in knowledge

Journal article


Madanayake, U. and Egbu, C. (2019). Critical analysis for big data studies in construction: significant gaps in knowledge. Built Environment Project and Asset Management. 9 (4), pp. 530-547.
AuthorsMadanayake, U. and Egbu, C.
Abstract

Purpose
The purpose of this paper is to identify the gaps and potential future research avenues in the big data research specifically in the construction industry.

Design/methodology/approach
The paper adopts systematic literature review (SLR) approach to observe and understand trends and extant patterns/themes in the big data analytics (BDA) research area particularly in construction-specific literature.

Findings
A significant rise in construction big data research is identified with an increasing trend in number of yearly articles. The main themes discussed were big data as a concept, big data analytical methods/techniques, big data opportunities – challenges and big data application. The paper emphasises “the implication of big data in to overall sustainability” as a gap that needs to be addressed. These implications are categorised as social, economic and environmental aspects.

Research limitations/implications
The SLR is carried out for construction technology and management research for the time period of 2007–2017 in Scopus and emerald databases only.

Practical implications
The paper enables practitioners to explore the key themes discussed around big data research as well as the practical applicability of big data techniques. The advances in existing big data research inform practitioners the current social, economic and environmental implications of big data which would ultimately help them to incorporate into their strategies to pursue competitive advantage. Identification of knowledge gaps helps keep the academic research move forward for a continuously evolving body of knowledge. The suggested new research avenues will inform future researchers for potential trending and untouched areas for research.

Social implications
Identification of knowledge gaps helps keep the academic research move forward for continuous improvement while learning. The continuously evolving body of knowledge is an asset to the society in terms of revealing the truth about emerging technologies.

Originality/value
There is currently no comprehensive review that addresses social, economic and environmental implications of big data in construction literature. Through this paper, these gaps are identified and filled in an understandable way. This paper establishes these gaps as key issues to consider for the continuous future improvement of big data research in the context of the construction industry.

Year2019
JournalBuilt Environment Project and Asset Management
Journal citation9 (4), pp. 530-547
PublisherEmerald
ISSN2044-124X
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1108/BEPAM-04-2018-0074
Publication dates
Online09 Sep 2019
Publication process dates
Accepted17 May 2019
Deposited23 Oct 2019
Accepted author manuscript
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https://openresearch.lsbu.ac.uk/item/88408

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