Journal article

Client learning for successful architect‐client relationships

15 Apr 2012
Description

Purpose

This paper seeks to explain how clients deal effectively with challenges on private single dwelling projects by achieving learning.

Design/methodology/approach

Eight in‐depth interviews were conducted across five case studies of successful architect‐client relationships. The narrative inquiry approach was used to establish the extent to which clients achieved learning and to describe the ways clients effectively dealt with project challenges.

Findings

The findings indicate that clients achieved learning on all five case studies, enabling them to function with increasing competency over the course of projects. Client learning is a characteristic of successful relationships and is demonstrated through the following indicators: learning about the nature of the design/construction process, learning to take enjoyment in the new environment, and learning about the architectural milieu.

Research limitations/implications

This research is limited to the investigation of the simplified architect‐client relationship on private single dwelling projects. However, the conceptual model developed can be used to investigate relationships associated with other project types as they may offer different circumstances and challenges to the management of project relationships.

Practical implications

A total of 69 per cent of architects in Australia spend some of their work time on residential projects, and therefore improvements in this area can have significant impact on a considerably large portion of the profession.

Social implications

Problematic architect‐client relationships resulting in the marginalisation of the profession can be detrimental to the quality of the environment. An understanding of characteristics underpinning successful architect‐client relationships can thus contribute to the quality of the built environment.

Originality/value

This research identified ways in which clients effectively dealt with difficulties on projects by achieving learning to achieve successful architect‐client relationships.

Publication Details
Identifiers: 
DOI: 
10.1108/09699981211219599
Volume: 
19
Issue: 
3
Pagination: 
253-268
Access Rights Type: 
Paid subscription required
Language: 
English
License Type: 
All Rights Reserved
Peer Reviewed: 
Yes
Published year only: 
2012
10
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