The research reported in this paper set out to investigate ethics in the initial stages of construction projects. Briefing is the first real contact stage between the commissioner (client/employer) of a project — at this stage a potential project — and those involved in project realization — the designers and, subsequently, the constructors. It is well known that early decisions are of greatest impact and so, the importance of the initial contacts, communications and consequent decisions are paramount. Different project participants are known to pursue individual objectives to varying degrees as well as possessing different perspectives and perceptions and operating/behaving in different ways. Hence, determination of the appropriate form, content etc. of a project is, inevitably, a matter of exercising value judgements and compromises and so, involves ethical considerations. A case study of a project through the briefing stage is reported and analysed, from initial contacts to scheme approval. It is apparent that a number of ethical concerns are manifest through the various actions of the major participants.
- business ethics
- construction management