This project aimed to understand the current state of OSH systems in Australia and China and act as a mechanism of technology and knowledge transfer between countries in order to reap mutual benefits.
August 2013 – June 2014
Australia–China Science and Research Fund (Australia–China Group Missions), Department of Industry, Australian Government
The group mission sought to initiate an Australia–China knowledge cluster to identify barriers and enablers for export and import of a range of construction systems and products which support economic, social and environmental objectives for all stakeholders.
The Australian housing sector has considerable challenges. There is evidence that suggests that off-site manufacturing (OSM) solves problems related to quality control, affordability, construction delays, low customer satisfaction, skills shortages, poor site management and high levels of safety incidents. OSM has been considered an answer to this industry problem, although there has been little material effect, however there are a few exemplars.
The Chinese prefabrication industry is adept in OSM. The research team went to China to conduct intensive industry-research workshops to develop shared expertise on innovative supply chain integration systems with a focus on knowledge management enabled by collaborative building information systems. The activities in China included conducting workshops and public lectures in both Tsinghua University and Harbin Institute of Technology, and visiting two research institutes and five companies. The project resulted in eliciting knowledge (explicit and tacit) and the development of shared expertise on innovative supply chain integration systems for pre-fabricated and modular construction activities.
The key outcomes include:
- establishment of the Knowledge Cluster
- report on the current state of OSH systems in Australia
- Lessons Learnt during the China visit
- OSH systems Research Roadmap