Relational Contracting and High-Performance Project Outcomes


Today's complex civil infrastructure developments do not finish on time or within budget since they are mostly managed by traditional contract agreements promoting hierarchical levels and fragmentation between the associated multinational and multicultural entities. Recent studies reveal that many managerial deficiencies have been recorded due to lack of cooperation, limited trust, and ineffective communications. These adversarial relationships lead to set of conflicts, claims and disputes between all associated stakeholders. This paper analyzes AIA A201; being the most widely used traditional delivery contract agreement in the construction industry, together with the available IPD contract agreements comprising ConcensusDOCS 300, AIA C195, and AIA C191. Traditional contracts reflect a tools-based approach that currently dominates the industry and only aims to guide project completion through segregated and unconnected mechanisms. To the contrary, relational contracts substantially reduce the risk of gaps or overlaps between the different roles and create duties of care between all associated team members. The results of this comparative analysis fosters the author to start a new research where dynamic social network analysis (SNA) will be utilized to visualize and understand the myriad of relationships that can either facilitate or impede relational contracting as represented by knowledge creation, transfer, and acquisition. The author's already developed multi-party partnering contract for integrated project delivery will form the basis for assigning roles, responsibilities, rights, and obligations to the parties' respective relationships.

Meeting Name

Annual Conference of the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering 2011, CSCE 2011 (2011: Jun. 14-17, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada)


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Civil infrastructures; Comparative analysis; Contract agreements; Hierarchical level; Integrated project; Knowledge creations; Project completion; Project outcomes; Relational contracts; Social network analysis; Team members, Civil engineering; Construction industry; Project management; Social networking (online), Contracts

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


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© 2011 Canadian Society for Civil Engineering, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jun 2011

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