Journal article

The potential of blockchain in building construction

Flow Design Case study
Construction customers want more complex facilities delivered faster and at a lower cost. Transaction costs account for a significant proportion of each new or refurbished facility (a 2017 report from the Infrastructure Client Group in the UK suggests as high as 50%), yet they contribute no value to the customer. Blockchain is being suggested as a way to reduce transaction costs by eliminating the need for intermediaries to build trust as a prerequisite for successfully executed agreements. This study first describes the thinking that underpins blockchain technology, outlining how it works, and the potential limitations of the technology. Second, using a case study, reviews the potential cost savings from the use of blockchain for a real estate company. The results reveal a potential cost savings from blockchain deployment at 8.3% of the total cost of residential construction, with a standard deviation of 1.26%. Third, we explore the implications, risks and applications of blockchain technology for improving flow in the end-to-end design and construction process and we identify opportunities for future research on blockchain applications in construction.
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