Inderscience Publishers

Multicultural large construction projects: the key role of trust

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This paper aims to explain why trust is regarded as the cornerstone for successfully leading a large multicultural construction project, and to understand the interdependency of developing trust on different levels, interpersonal, intergroup and inter–organisational level. Issues like increasing employees self esteem, publicly acknowledge partners' contribution, professional skills, caring attitudes and emotional intelligence helps in developing interpersonal and institutional trust during the construction project execution. The methodology applies a qualitative research. It is based on an Austrian case study which objective was to build an electricity storage power plant over five years. The research technique uses in–depth interviews with engineers who have been working in different fields of the project and participant observation. The research provides recommendations that can be taken by companies to prepare their employees in advance before the actual work begins helping them to save project costs, time, facilitate knowledge transfer and the overall project quality.

Keywords: international construction, construction projects, institutional trust, interpersonal trust, inter–organisational trust, culture, multicultural projects, large projects, Austria, case study, electricity storage power plants, project management, project costs, project time, knowledge transfer, project quality

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