Critical Barriers to Social Sustainability: the Quantity Surveyors’ Perspective

Eric Ohene (Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology)
Gabriel Nani (Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology)
Mershack Opoku Tetteh (Hong Kong Polytechnic University)


Although the advocacy for Social Sustainability consideration in the construction industry has been on the rise, however, the practice of Social Sustainability (SS) is plagued with many barriers. The barriers that hinder practices of SS in the construction industry has to be carried out. Notwithstanding, not much research works has been undertaken regarding the barriers that hinder SS in the construction industry. The aim of the study is to explore the critical barriers to social sustainability from the perspective of the quantity surveyor. A comprehensive literature review was conducted and nineteen (19) variables (barriers) were identified. Structured questionnaires were designed and were answered by 110 out of the total sample size of 120 Quantity Surveying professionals recognised by the Ghana Institute of Surveyors (GhIS) representing approximately 92% response rate. The data collected were analyse using Factor Analysis. The study found out that Socio-cultural barriers, Political and Technical barriers, knowledge or awareness barriers and financial barriers are the underlying group barriers for the 19 identified barriers. The study further revealed that, among the four underlying groups, Political and Technical barriers was the most dominant. This draws special attentions to the government’s position in ensuring effective consideration in promoting social sustainability practices as well as the technical knowledge needed in the SS practices in Ghana. The study as well raises the awareness and the need to ensure adequate education, training and professional development. Again, this study adds to sustainability literature by analysing the critical barriers to achieving social sustainability from the perspective of the Quantity Surveyor. The findings and recommendations of this study will help practitioners and policy makers in taking appropriate measures to overcome the barriers and thereby promoting the integration of social sustainability into quantity surveying practices.


Barriers; Sustainability; Stakeholder; Technical; Political; Financial

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Copyright © 2019 Eric Ohene, Gabriel Nani, Mershack Opoku Tetteh

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