Use of information and communication technologies by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in building construction

Emrah Acar*, Ismail Koçak, Yildiz Sey, David Arditi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

94 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Scholars usually agree that small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) active in construction are not very innovative when compared with large-size construction enterprises. This is particularly evident in the case of adoption and diffusion of innovation associated with information and communication technologies (ICTs). Although ICTs are powerful instruments for the rapid and broader diffusion of technical knowledge, few SMEs are fully able to exploit their benefits. There is little evidence of how SMEs perceive ICTs and of the extent to which these technologies are actually used in the construction industry. There is a relationship between organizational size and the use of ICTs within the SMEs in the building construction sector in Turkey. A set of ICT variables comprising the perception, investment, usage and the software preferences of SMEs were analysed by making use of the data collected in a survey of a randomly selected sample of 227 building construction firms in Turkey. In contrast to the common approaches that consider SMEs as part of a homogeneous set of firms with similar characteristics, this study seeks the differences in ICT-related attitudes between SMEs of different sizes. Rather than using arbitrarily pre-defined intervals to classify firms by size, cluster analysis was used in this study. Although what emerges as a whole is the common under-utilization of ICTs by SMEs in building construction, 'organizational size' appears to explain some of the ICT-related attitude differences within these SMEs. Policy makers can consider using the findings of this study as inputs in their activities, as these findings represent a generic overview of the diffusion of new technologies and can assist in identifying future research directions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)713-722
Number of pages10
JournalConstruction Management and Economics
Volume23
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2005

Keywords

  • Information and communication technology
  • Organizational size
  • Small firms
  • Turkish building construction industry

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