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Revamping Design, Construction, and Operations for Boosting Built Asset Sustainability

Special issue call for papers from Built Environment Project and Asset Management

Guest edited by:

Dr. Anuradha Waidyasekara
[email protected]
University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka

Dr. Sepani Senaratne
[email protected]
Western Sydney University, Australia.

Aims and Scope

While ‘Sustainability’ has been a broad target for many journals and special issues, the theme of this particular Special Issue (SI) centers on revisiting and revamping traditional approaches to Design, Construction, and Operations with a common focus on boosting ‘Built Asset Sustainability’. Such ‘Built Asset Sustainability’ focused revamping is needed both within each of the above three project phases, as well as by linking appropriate processes and people across these three phases, in ways that would enhance and optimize the life-cycle sustainability of the built infrastructure. [Note: ‘built infrastructure’ or ‘built assets’ are taken to include buildings and civil engineering infrastructure]. In this way, this SI aims to inject and integrate mainstream and innovative special sustainability considerations across different phases, types of construction projects and stakeholders, to develop a holistic approach focused on the cradle to grave, if not cradle to cradle life-cycle of built assets.

This theme is expected to draw out the latest innovations, technologies, knowledge, and thinking on what really can and must be done to enhance the sustainability of built infrastructure by linking the phases from design to operations that have usually not delivered as best as they could on life-cycle sustainability, largely because of the ‘disconnects’ between designers, constructors and operators.

In exploring such areas from these particular perspectives, the proposed SI papers are expected to unearth and disseminate valuable new findings that would also provide a high potential for reference and citation. This SI is also expected to open up new directions for well-focused research and to suggest innovative strategies for game-changing better practices to significantly enhance built asset sustainability and its management.

Topics covered

NB: The following topics are indicative and not exhaustive. Papers on other topics under the main theme are welcome.

  • Revisiting and Revitalizing Design Criteria, Principles and Processes to Boost ‘Built Asset Sustainability’
  • Revamping Construction Methods, Equipment and Processes to Boost ‘Built Asset Sustainability’
  • Optimising Operational Priorities, Processes and Protocols to Boost ‘Built Asset Sustainability’
  • Enabling Feed Forward and Feedback on Sustainability Priorities and Barriers, Between Design, Construction and Operational Teams
  • Linking Sustainability Criteria Across the Design, Construction and Operational Phases
  • Synergising Sustainability Principles and Practices Across the Design, Construction and Operational Phases
  • Eco-Friendly and Sustainable Materials and Methods
  • Low Carbon and Energy Efficient Buildings and Infrastructure
  • Economic, Social and Cultural Implications of Built Asset Sustainability
  • Assessment of Built Asset Sustainability at Micro and Macro Levels
  • Retrofitting and Adaptive Re-Use of Existing Buildings
  • Procurement Strategies for Incentivising Sustainability
  • Innovations and Smart Technologies to Enhance Sustainability
  • Stakeholder Management and Customer Satisfaction to Improve Building Sustainability
  • Sustainable Cities and Resilience
  • Skills, Capabilities and Capacity Enhancement for Sustainable Construction
  • ‘Circular Economy’, Sustainable Business Models, Business Cases and the needed ‘New Economics’
  • Revamping Education and Training Needs Across Built Environment Disciplines and Functions, Targeting a Better Sustainable Built Environment.


Submission deadline: November 10, 2018
Expected Publication: about Oct./ Nov. 2019 for ‘early- cite’ of accepted papers

Further guidance on submission:

All submissions to Built Environment Project and Asset Management should be through ScholarOne Manuscripts. Registration and access are available at:

Author guidelines must be strictly followed. Please see:

Submitted articles must not have been previously published, nor should they be under consideration for publication anywhere else, while under review for this journal.

The Guest Editors will conduct an initial screening of submitted papers. Those judged suitable for the special issue will be sent to at least two independent referees for double blind peer review, after which submissions may be recommended for revisions and further review, acceptance or rejection.

Interested authors should select (from the drop-down menu) the special issue “Revamping Design, Construction, and Operations for Boosting Built Asset Sustainability” at the appropriate step in the submission process, i.e. in response to “Please select the issue you are submitting to”.

Papers for this above captioned special issue should be submitted through the above portal between 15th August 2018 and 10th November 2018. [Note: new submissions after the deadline of 10th November 2018 can not be considered for this Special Issue].

More information about the subject of the special issue:

Several industry practitioners and researchers have identified the imperatives to integrate design, delivery and operational phases of varied construction projects to benefit from the true and full value of sustainability in construction projects. As stated by Lombardi and Shen (2017), future challenges in sustainable development within the built environment stimulate and reinterpret the demands of responsible and sustainable development in the built environment for future action and development. Moreover, adopting holistic sustainable construction practices minimises the overall environmental impact of the built asset throughout its whole life (Opoku and Ahamed, 2014).

Although various techniques and management skills have been used in construction projects to improve their sustainable performance, these techniques seem to have not been effectively implemented due to fragmentation and poor coordination among construction stakeholders (Shen et al., 2007). Moreover, Shen et al. (2007) identify a lack of consistency and a holistic approach in helping participants to implement sustainable construction practices at various phases of a project such as design, construction and operation.Theo (2003) emphasises the importance of commitment of the management and staff for its success. Further, all stakeholders must have an appreciation and full understanding of the technological complexities often associated with innovative designs in order to provide a safe and sound built facilities. Feedforward and feedback across planning, design, construction and ‘use’/ operation phases must be enabled and encouraged for ‘Total Asset Management’ throughout the life-cycle of the built asset, be it building or civil engineering infrastructure (Ling et al., 2014; Wong et al., 2014).

It is increasingly evident that most decisions to construct a new asset, or refurbish an existing built asset, immediately open up many opportunities for significant synergies through collaborative planning, design, construction, operations and maintenance. However, such collaborative links across the above life-cycle phases, are also restrained by challenges and barriers arising from traditional mind-sets and working practices. Research papers in this special issue are expected to identify and address such critical gaps and barriers. This should also assist the construction industry in the continuing journey towards whole life cycle built asset sustainability. Thus, this special issue aims to rectify the imbalance and gaps in the literature by soliciting the latest studies and advances in boosting built asset sustainability in order to catalyse more research in this area, by juxtaposing, and where possible, straddling, the different phases in built asset development and ‘use’/ operation i.e. over its life-cycle.


Ling, F.Y.Y., Toh, B., Kumaraswamy, M.M. Wong, K.K.W. (2014), "Strategies for integrating design & construction and operations & maintenance supply chains in Singapore", Structural Survey: Journal of Building Pathology and Refurbishment , Vol. 32, No. 2, pp.158 – 182.

Lombardi, P., and Shen, G.Q. (2017), "Future challenges in evaluating and managing sustainable development in the built environment", edited byBrandon, P.S, Lombardi, P., and Shen, G.Q.,John Wiley & Sons Ltd, UK.

Opoku, A, and  Ahmed V. (2014), "Embracing sustainability practices in UK construction organizations: Challenges facing intra-organizational leadership", Built Environment Project and Asset Management, Vol. 4 No.1, pp.90-107,

Shen, L.Y., Hao, J.L., Tam, V.W.Y., and Yao, H. (2007), “A checklist for assessing sustainability performance of construction projects”, Journal of Civil Engineering and Management, Vol. XIII No.4, pp, 273–281.

Theo, M. M. M., and Loosemore, M. (2003), “Theory of waste behaviour in the construction industry”, Construction Management & Economics, Vol. 19 No.7, pp.741-751.

Wong, K.K.W., Kumaraswamy, M.M., Mahesh, G., Ling, F.Y.Y. (2014), "Building Integrated Project and Asset Management Teams for Sustainable Built Infrastructure Development", Journal of Facilities Management, Vol. 12, No.3, pp. 187-210.

Further information about the guest editors:

Dr. Anuradha Waidyasekara is a Senior Lecturer, attached to the Department of Building Economics, University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka. She possess over 12 years of teaching and research experience. Anuradha graduated from University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka, with a BSc. Honours in Quantity Surveying and holds a PhD and M.Sc from the same University. She is a Corporate Member of the Institute of Quantity Surveyors, Sri Lanka (IQSSL) and an Associate Member of the Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (AIQS). Anuradha has published over 50 research publications in international refereed journals and conferences in the field of built environment. Her research interests include sustainable construction, innovative technologies, contract and procurement, renewable energy, and smart and sustainable cities.

Dr Sepani Senaratne is a Senior Lecturer and Academic Course Advisor for Honours in Construction Management at Western Sydney University (WSU). Before Joining WSU, she was a Senior Lecturer and the Director of Postgraduate Studies Division at  Faculty of Architecture, University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka. Sepani has diverse academic experience in quantity surveying and construction and project management disciplines. She obtained her PhD from University of Salford, UK in 2005. Sepani is an active researcher and has widely published (100+ publications) in leading journals and conferences in the Built Environment.