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Evolution of management theory: the case of production management in construction

Santos, Alguinaldo dos.; Powell, James Alfred; Sarshar, Marjan


Alguinaldo dos. Santos

James Alfred Powell

Marjan Sarshar


In the past 100 years production management has evolved from a set of heuristic ideas to a portfolio of somewhat developed concepts and principles. “Justintime” and “total quality management” integrate most of the modern concepts and principles in the field. Furthermore, seminal studies carried out within production, such as the Gilbreth/Taylor, Hawthorne and Tavistock studies, have given significant contribution to the evolution of management theory. This paper presents the context of production management evolution and assesses the application of some heuristic production approaches within construction sites of Brazil and England. The study revealed that, although the production management theory evolved significantly, construction practices do not apply the theory in a systemic and comprehensive manner. Clearly, lack of motivation and poor instruments for enabling “learning” are the central cause of this problem. © 2002, MCB UP Limited


Santos, A. D., Powell, J. A., & Sarshar, M. (2002). Evolution of management theory: the case of production management in construction. Management Decision, 40(8), 788-796.

Journal Article Type Review
Publication Date Oct 1, 2002
Journal Management Decision
Print ISSN 0025-1747
Publisher Emerald
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 40
Issue 8
Pages 788-796
Keywords production management, construction industry, management theory, construction management, Brazil, United Kingdom
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