Effectiveness of Off-Site Construction and Pre-manufactured Housing (2016)

Off-Site Construction and Pre-manufactured Housing Dissertation – The UK housing market has been under supplied for decades and is widely seen to be in crisis, creating an increasing affordability gap with house builders seemingly unable to increase supply in response to the level of demand. The off-site manufacture of homes offers a wide range of benefits which on first inspection provide a means to produce more homes, faster.

Yet the technology plays only a minor role in the market, with traditional home building methods dominating. The research aimed to establish the underlying causes for the failure of the house building industry to adopt this method of production, and understand whether off-site manufacture can fulfil its promise and contribute significantly to the UK’s housing supply. It was conducted through a literature review desk study and interviews with relevant industry professionals.

It was found that the UK housing market is complex, with contrasting views, opinions and motives. The research showed that any meaningful increase in the supply of homes can only be provided by an increase in the UK’s house building capacity – such as the entry of new house builders to the market. With an ongoing skills crisis in the industry, this appears to offer off-site manufacturers the opportunity to increase their presence in the sector. However, it was found that while off-site manufacture offers many benefits, they are currently poorly defined and the industry is too fragmented and ill-equipped to take advantage of the opportunities presented to it.

The aim of this dissertation will be to understand the potential for OSM to contribute to the UK’s housing supply, through significantly increasing capacity and so housing completions, and to provide recommendations to increase its use in the sector. This has been broken down into five smaller objectives:

  • Establish the current use of OSM in house building in the UK, identifying the benefits and drawbacks to its use
  • Identify and explain the barriers to its wider adoption
  • Establish whether OSM has the potential to contribute to increased house building
  • Explore the attitude towards non-traditional construction methods amongst house builders and their customers
  • Provide recommendations to enable the increased use of OSM in the UK

  • 12,000 words – 48 pages in length
  • Excellent use of literature
  • Excellent analysis of subject area
  • Well written throughout
  • Includes Interview transcripts
  • Ideal for quantity surveying students

1 – Introduction
Background of Off-Site Manufacture
Aims and Objectives
Structure of the dissertation

2 – Literature Review
Types of OSM
Use of OSM in the wider UK construction industry
UK housing market
Use of OSM in the housing construction industry
Advantages and Disadvantages to the use of OSM
Barriers to OSM adoption in house building
Drivers for the use of Off-site manufacturing in house building

3 – Methodology
Introduction to Methodology
Research Aim
Research Methods
Interview Structure
Interview Questions
Aim of Interviews
Structure of Questions
Interview Questions
Ethical Considerations
Approach to Data Analysis

4 – Interview Data
Interview Participants
Written Summary of Results
Codified results

5 – Data Analysis

6 – Conclusions and Recommendations
Areas for further research


Interview transcripts
Codified data

Off-Site Construction and Pre-manufactured Housing Dissertation
Off-Site Construction and Pre-manufactured Housing Dissertation

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