Innovative technology and deep uncertainty during the design and construction process of complex projects introduce great challenges to their organization and management. The traditional methods, represented in the project management body of knowledge (PMBOK) guide, can solve systematic problems; however, they cannot solve complex problems. Based on the management practice implemented in the deck pavement project of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge (HZMB), in this work, we propose a meta-synthesis management framework for a complex project from the perspective of the science of complexity. The method deems that the complexity of the project has the characteristic of being multi-scale both in the design phase and the construction phase. These problems can be classified into different categories, each of which requires a different strategy. As a result, it is first necessary to adopt the “exploration” strategy to reduce project complexity and to transform the deep uncertainty problems into systematic problems. Then, the “exploitation” strategy should be used to apply the PMBOK and other traditional methods to achieve the design and construction goals of the project and to improve its efficiency. More specifically, in the design phase of a complex project, the “innovative integration” process is used for the exploration of the new engineering technology and knowledge; then, the “functional integration” process is employed to define the system architecture, the interface relationship, the technical index, and other functions. In the construction phase, the “adaptive integration” process is used for the construction of the engineering organization system; next, the “efficient integration” process is employed to improve the actual construction performance. The meta-synthesis management framework proposed in this work reveals the multi-scale principle of solving complex problems in the management practice of a complex project, and develops the methodology of meta-synthesis.
Infrastructure mega-projects (IMP), which involve complex interactions and feedback, have more significant impact on economic, social, and other systems. This paper proposes a concept—the IMP complex ecosystem—to analyze IMP from a broad perspective of organic links across engineering, social, economic, and resource environments. Moreover, this paper proposes the theoretical concept, framework, and functions for the IMP complex ecosystem based on complex ecosystem theory. First, the coupling process between IMP complex ecosystem subsystems is analyzed through material flows, energy flows, information flows, and value streams. Second, a logistic model of the IMP complex ecosystem is proposed by analyzing the evolution conditions and motivations. Third, the evolution pattern of the IMP complex ecosystem is determined. Fourth, the positive evolution strategy of the IMP complex ecosystem based on dissipative structure theory and the influencing factors of the evolutionary process is introduced. Finally, the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and Sousa chinensis are used as the case study. This paper also analyzes the coupling structure on the complex ecosystem of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and investigates the coupling and evolution mechanism application of the IMP complex ecosystem on Sousa chinensis protection for the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge project.
The complexity of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and the political environment of “One country, Two systems” have brought a vital influence on the decision-making recognition, decision-making analysis, and decision-making management related to this cross-border infrastructure mega-project. Based on case study, this study systematically analyzes the complexity of the decision-making related to the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge, and explains the general principles that were used for its decision-making management. The research examines the decision-making management system of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge, its adaptive behavior, and specific coordination mechanism on different decision-making problems in different decision-making stages. This result provides reference for decision-making management system design of cross-border projects.
Complex integrity is one of the main characteristics of infrastructure mega-projects (IMPs). Cost, technology, risk, duration, environmental impact, and other uncertain complexities are interrelated and constitute a challenging and complex management problem. At present, there is no unified understanding of or solutions to these complex integrity problems. This study analyzes the complex integrity of the island-tunnel subproject of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge (HZMB) project and proposes an improved design-build (DB) mode in which the owner provides a preliminary design and has the right to form and manage consortium. This improved DB mode creatively degrades the special complexities that arise from multiple dimensions. On this basis, it is an efficacious way to grasp the main contradictions, integrate the effective resources, and degrade the complex integrity in multiple dimensions and at multiple levels so as to effectively deal with the complexity management of IMPs.
This study analyzes the design and operation of multi-level governance system for the smooth delivery of infrastructure mega-projects with high institutional complexity caused by market transition. From an institutional perspective, this study scrutinizes the structure, elements, and dynamics of the governance system of infrastructure mega-projects and then proposes an integrative framework based on the inductive case study of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge mega-project. Multiple evidences of archives, field studies, and interviews related to the case project are triangulated to further analyze the institutional effects, specifically those with government logics and market structures, on the design and operation of the three-level governance system. Results reveal that the co-evolution between governments and markets in China has shaped the vertical levels of the mega-project governance system and has further affected their evolution and operation across various stages of project development. This study contributes to the rapidly emerging research on complex system governance by proposing a systematic model of three-level mega-project governance to enhance the timely delivery of infrastructure mega-projects within budget.
Considering the rapid urbanization growth rate particularly in developing countries, the number of infrastructure mega-projects over the past years has risen tremendously. Essentially, because infrastructure mega-projects require huge investment funds, better management skills, well qualified and experienced international expertise and technology innovation, they are mostly preferred to be procured using the PPP method compare to the use of the traditional bid-build system. In this regard, this paper aims to develop a fuzzy evaluation model for assessing the suitability of procuring infrastructure mega-projects through PPP by considering their risk exposure. The main body of Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge (HZMB) is used as a case project to demonstrate the practicality of the risk evaluation model. The risk evaluation model consists of four critical risk groupings, these include, construction and land risks, commercial risks, operational risks and political risks. Using the risk evaluation equation, a risk index of 4.53 out of 5.00 is computed for the selected project if it is procured through the PPP scheme. This outcome shows that the case project is not suitable for the PPP approach because its risk exposure is very high. The model developed will enable PPP practitioners to predict the likely risk exposure of procuring infrastructure mega-projects through the PPP scheme.
The construction sites of mega construction projects (MCP) often have numerous participants with interfacing work within a highly complex system. It is critical how to realize collaborative work and information sharing among such participants. The information and communication technologies (ICTs) provides a technical guarantee for solving this problem. Existing research has been achieved the partial processes digitization of construction site, but certain problems still exist: 1)information perception of the construction site is passive. 2) common collaboration and coordination problems in the construction industry have not been addressed. The emerging trends of ICTs have resulted in the integration of various computer technologies such as CPS, BIM, big data, and cloud computing into construction process, which would changes behavioral and management mode of construction sites. These new ICTs have been applied successfully in MCP, in particular, Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge project. A new management mode of construction sites is inspired by these case. In this paper, a new management mode of construction site for MCP has been proposed, namely, smart construction site. The ultimate goal of smart construction site is to accomplish safe, efficient and high-quality construction. This study put forward the conceptual framework for smart construction site, and have identified three key elements of smart construction site, including information support platform, collaboration work, and intelligent construction management. A case study on Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge project work as an evidence to support the practicability of the proposed mode. Significant contributions of this study is to propose a new management mode for MCP in construction industry, which would enrich the body of knowledge or the construction management community. Future research should be dedicated to further explore the potential of smart construction site in MCP management.
In this paper the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge project is taken as a case to analyze supplier development in infrastructure mega-projects. Compared with manufacturing industry, the characteristics of supplier development in infrastructure mega-projects is analyzed in term of development motives, supplier selection, quality management, production mode, owner participation and risks. The critical factors influencing the construction supplier development are identified, which include incentives, collaboration, future market, trust and bilateral communication. Furthermore, focusing on the incentives for the supplier’s product quality and production capacity improvement, decision-making framework models are proposed to design the incentive mechanisms.
Ecological compensation plays an important role in implementing the social responsibility of infrastructure mega-projects. Based on the results of a field study, an in-depth interview, and archive data, this paper introduces the ecological compensation for Sousa chinensis (the Indo-Pacific humpbacked dolphin) during the construction of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge. It studies the concrete measures, decision-making processes, and organizational collaboration of the ecological compensation, using the method of a case study. The present study not only enriches our understanding of the ecological compensation practice during the construction of infrastructure mega-projects, but also extends the literature on the social responsibility of infrastructure mega-projects. This sheds light on the protection of the environment as well as biodiversity in the construction of future infrastructure mega-projects.
Infrastructure mega-project (IMP) innovation is a complex process characterized by highly diverse innovators, a dynamic life-cycle, and stickiness of innovation knowledge. The IMP’s innovation network can be easily broken due to the fact that the network involves many different innovators across different industries and different projects. Further reasons for the fragility of the IMP’s innovation network are the dynamics of the IMP life-cycle, the diversity of the IMP’s innovative entities, the uniqueness of each IMP, and the temporary nature of each IMP’s organizations. The innovation island formed by the breaking of an IMP’s innovation network can stifle and harm innovation performance. Drawing from the knowledge-based view as well as innovation network theory, our research identifies the heterogeneous characte- ristics of IMP innovation. We propose a framework to analyze the formation mechanism of the IMP innovation island from three dimensions—the horizontal innovation island, the vertical innovation island, and the longitudinal innovation island. We look at the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge project to elaborate the innovation island concept that negatively impacts IMP innovation. We also offer theoretical implications regarding the broader question of how IMPs can manage their innovation in practice.
Design Units: CCCC Highway Consultants Co., Ltd.; China Zhongtie Major Bridge Reconnaissance & Design Institute Co., Ltd.
Construction Units: China Communications Construction Company Limited Consortium; China Railway Shanhaiguan Bridge Group Co., Ltd.; Wuhan Heavy Engineering Co., Ltd.; CCCC First Harbor Engineering Company Ltd. Consortium; Guangdong Changda Highway Engineering Co., Ltd.; China ZhongTie Major Bridge Engineering Group Co., Ltd. Consortium; Chongqing Zhixiang Paving Technology Engineering Co., Ltd.; Hunan Construction Engineering Group; China Railway Electrification Bureau Group Co., Ltd. Consortium
Supervision Units: China Railway Wuhan Bridge Engineering Consulting Supervision Co., Ltd. Consortium; China Classification Society Industrial Corp.; Wuhan Bridge and Building Works Supervision Co., Ltd.; Tiesiyuan (Hubei) Engineering Supervision Consulting Co., Ltd. Consortium; Xi’an Fangzhou Engineering Consulting Co., Ltd. Consortium; Guangdong Zhonggong Project Management Co., Ltd.; Chongqing Zhongyu Engineering Consultation and Supervision Co., Ltd. Consortium