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Best, R.(2013).The productivity puzzle: Is it just about the data? Paper submitted for presentation at the 38th Australian University Building Educators Association Conference. Auckland: New Zealand.

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© Copyright, R Best, 2013


Measuring construction industry productivity at any level above that of site activities such as bricklaying or plastering remains a vexed question. A variety of methods have been developed and tested but results are often far from consistent with different methods that appear equally valid in theory producing quite different results. A recent study conducted in Australia demonstrated the application of different methods that produced some similar results but with some care required in the analysis of the outcomes. Another example showed large variations in results following the application of a similar method to different yet apparently equally valid datasets. Analysis of these studies shows that it seems likely that the differences are often a function of the quality of the data rather than the underpinning theory. The second example displayed methodological problems as well as data reliability issues.

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This document has been peer reviewed.