Project Management Institute

Construction industry attitudes toward disputes and prevention/resolution techniques

The Construction Industry Institute (CII), at its annual conference, conducted a survey of over 200 construction industry professionals on their attitudes about contract disputes and litigation. The key causes of contract disputes involve imprecise contracts or inadequate communication between the contracting parties. Among the most commonly used dispute prevention techniques are equitable risk distribution, positive contractual incentives, and partnering relationships. Litigation is the most common dispute resolution technique. Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) techniques include binding and non-binding arbitration and other methods that may occur during the construction process. The survey's response rate differed among groups only when both parties faulted the other side. The dispute prevent/resolution techniques most commonly used by survey respondents were contractual incentives, long-term partnering, project partnering, contractual risk allocation, and litigation (in that order).
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