Construction contract management is vital in that it helps manage disparate tasks to ensure projects are delivered within budget and timeframes. CCM is a collaborative process with ongoing challenges that can include nonpayment or delayed payments, information sharing, and tracking supply chain data. Blockchain, defined by investopedia.com as “a distributed database or ledger that exists across a network” stores transaction data as blocks. As an open platform, information is continuously tracked and recorded, improving transparency. Could blockchain benefit the construction industry?
While some studies have identified blockchain as a possible solution for some contract management issues, there has been no systematic literature review. Researchers Xueyan Zhang, Tingting Liu, Anisur Rahman, and Lingzhong Zhou explore applying blockchain technology in construction contract management, assess the benefits and drawbacks, and identify strategies to facilitate implementation. In their paper, “Blockchain Applications for Construction Contract Management: A Systematic Literature Review” in the Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, the authors look at pain points that blockchain could resolve and the integration challenges. Read their findings and learn more about applying blockchain in CCM in https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-7862.0002428. The abstract is below.
Recently, there has been increasing interest in the research of blockchain applications in construction contract management (CCM). CCM is currently flawed, mainly lacking in information sharing, on-time payment processes, and an easily traceable supply chain. Applying blockchain-based applications can achieve autotransaction processes, create a secure information delivery environment, and promote collaboration among organizations. This research aims to discuss the application of blockchain technology in construction contract management, evaluate the benefits and drawbacks associated with blockchain application, and propose recommended strategies to facilitate the smooth implementation of blockchain technology for improved construction contract management practices. A systematic literature review is used as the main research, and content analysis is employed for analyzing the literature. The literature analysis shows that blockchain application in CCM mainly falls under three areas: information management; payment management; and supply chain management. Under each area, the current drawbacks in CCM, as well as the opportunities and challenges associated with blockchain applications, are presented. This research is one of the first attempts to examine the application of a blockchain in CCM systematically; it also provides construction contract managers or administrators with practical guidelines on leveraging blockchain technology to improve CCM practices.
Explore more on how to apply blockchain to CCM in the ASCE Library: https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-7862.0002428.