Why is Design-Build Commonly Used in the Public Sector? An Illustration from Hong Kong

Edmond Lam, Albert Chan, Daniel Chan


The Design and Build (D&B) procurement method is one of the systems advocated to overcome inadequacies with the traditional procurement method. In recent years, this innovative procurement method has been put to practice in Hong Kong where a vast amount of infrastructure works is taking place. This paper aims to illustrate the applicability of design-build in the Hong Kong setting.As most D&B projects are undertaken by the public sector of Hong Kong, the main features of a public sector project and reasons for its wider use on D&B are fully examined in the paper. To further explore the benefits of D&B in actual practice, structured interviews have been conducted with clients, contractors and consultants running D&B projects in Hong Kong. Summary of major problems of running D&B projects from the previous study by the authors is also outlined. With the increasing use of D&B in the public sector of Hong Kong and worldwide, more research can be undertaken on the quantitative comparison of the traditional mode of procurement and how to carry out a D&B project successfully so as to develop a knowledge base for the D&B procurement method.

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