- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 27 May 2020
Projects are usually long-term transactions with high uncertainty and complexity, and it is impossible to resolve every detail and foresee every eventuality at the outset. As a result, situations often arise that are not clearly addressed by the contract. The basic factors that drive the development of conflict are:
Conflict avoidance strategies can be used to manage these factors. Some of the most common conflict avoidance approaches include:
- Effective management. Potential problems can be analysed and managed by proactively planning future work and raising issues of concern early.
- Ensuring clear contract documents. Conflicts can arise from ambiguities in contract documents.
- Partnering and alliancing. Closer co-operation between project stakeholders can improve teamwork.
- Client management. A proper and full understanding of the client’s objectives can help avoid conflict, as can liaising with the client and managing expectations regularly.
- Progress assessment. Regularly assessing project progress, costs, and other key performance indicators and liaising with the main contractor to deal with any problems.
- Design team management. Ensuring timely provision of comprehensive and coordinated information both within the design team and from them to the contractor.
- Maintaining records. Conflict can often be avoided by keeping proper and detailed records of agreements, instructions, variations, labour, plant, materials, and so on.
- Payment practices. Establishing and adhering to proper payment practices.
- Stakeholder consultation and stakeholder management. Keeping all stakeholders up to date with regular reports on objectives risks, cost, progress and quality.
- Third party dependencies. Identifying and assessing third party dependencies and putting in place strategies to mitigate, transfer, avoid or accept risks.
 Find out more
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Adversarial behaviour in the UK construction industry.
- Alternative dispute resolution.
- Chinese wall.
- Conflict of interest.
- Construction disputes.
- Contract claims.
- Delays on construction projects.
- Dispute resolution.
- Game theory.
- Negotiation techniques.
- Pressing pause to avoid errors.
- Risk assessment.
Featured articles and news
Results show guarded optimism and payment concerns.
Noteworthy navigable aqueducts.
Technology is making remote work a reality.
Carefully placed structures add drama to pastoral vistas.
Report provides actions required by 2030 to achieve a zero carbon economy.
What type of cool roof is most suitable?
Active Travel programme prioritises cyclists and pedestrians.
CIAT issues caution for use of new standard.
Industry leaders discuss climate change, the economy and other influences.
The building manager is key to operations.
The impact Scotland’s dynamic coast has on the historic environment.
IHBC announces role in new APPG.