Impediments to Reform in the Australian Building and Construction Industry

Martin Loosemore


The Cole Royal Commission into the Construction andBuilding Industry has generated heated debate, makingrecommendations that go to the heart of establishedcultures, power structures and management practices.While the Cole Report had a difficult birth, theimplementation of the reforms is likely to be more painful.Unlocking the untapped productive potential, which Coleargues exists, will depend upon addressing the manyimpediments to reform that exist in the construction andbuilding industry. This paper explores these impediments,suggesting a number of strategies to overcome them at aproject, company and government level. It concludes thatunless there is a fundamental shift in the established powerstructures and relationships within the industry, change islikely to be hard won.

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