Forum to consider role that diversity can play in error reduction28 May 21
Participants in GIRI's next free online forum will be invited to consider how the creation of a more diverse construction industry could contribute to reducing error.
GTC director Nick Francis will lead the session, which will take the form of a combination of short lessons, case studies, interactive discussions and breakout groups. The 90-minute session aims to equip those attending with the tools and understanding to advocate for greater diversity in the industry,in the knowledge of the wider benefits for error reduction.
Without diversity of thought it is highly unlikely that the industry will manage to do things differently, so achieving diversity is a priority for GIRI as part of its drive to develop an error-free culture.
The session will start by exploring the concept of diversity in its broadest sense, alongside that of ‘diversity of thought’. Participants will consider the question: "Should we promote diversity just because it is morally right, or does it also have a positive impact on our project outcomes?”
A CIA case study which identifies how lack of diversity inhibited the agency’s ability to prevent the 9/11 attacks will be used to illustrate this point.
In common with most GIRI forums, the collective experience of session attendees will be drawn upon as they consider how diversity of thought relates to error in construction. They will reflect on instances where members of a project team may have known there were faults, but were not empowered to prevent or correct them.
A case study from Sweden will illustrate the unexpected benefits that were gained at a local council level through increased diversity, and the concepts of ‘homophily’ and ‘problem space’ will be introduced. Through an interactive session, attendees will explore how the construction industry is changing, and consider whether experience from previous projects is the panacea for error as we adapt to the challenges ahead.
What ability does the construction industry have to improve and respond to change? Attendees will be invited to consider how the four tenets of evolution apply to the sector, and what elements are missing.
The forum will conclude by considering what will happen if we fail to recruit and retain a diverse workforce, and identify immediate practical measures which participants can use to promote diversity, in order to positively influence the culture of the construction industry.