Browsing AS 2015 Volume 22 Issue 2 by Issue Date
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Item Open AccessContinuing Professional Development in the quantity surveying profession: quantity surveyors’ perceptions(University of the Free State, 2015) Olwagen, Juan; Cumberlege, Roy; Moss, IanEnglish: This research study was conducted in order to investigate Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in the South African quantity surveying profession. The study further aimed to establish the reasons why some quantity surveyors do not acquire the required CPD hours and face losing their professional registration with the South African Council for the Quantity Surveying Profession (SACQSP). Practising quantity surveyors’ perceptions in terms of CPD was investigated in order to establish whether there are factors restricting their participation in CPD as well as to determine whether quantity surveyors regard CPD as beneficial and value adding to them as individual as well as the profession. Data to conduct the study was gathered via a national web-based questionnaire. The questionnaire was structured to investigate the respondents’ perceptions regarding the importance of CPD as well as relating evidence to various aspects of CPD, as drawn from the literature. One hundred and thirty-eight registered quantity surveyors participated in the survey. The research established that quantity surveyors regarded handing in their CPD records on time as the most important factor when participating in CPD. It was found that quantity surveyors lack a structured approach to CPD, suggesting that they merely engage in CPD when they have adequate time. With regard to CPD Category 1, respondents regard seminars as the most important; however, the majority of the respondents participate in Acta Structilia by completing a short questionnaire relating to published articles. With regard to CPD Category 2, respondents regard mentoring of professional candidates as the most important, and most often engage in this activity. Respondents indicated that the most significant barrier to participation in CPD is time related, with work commitments restricting participation. Respondents were neutral to the statement that quantity surveyors not complying with CPD requirements should be de-registered. Respondents regarded CPD as beneficial as well as a value adding activity, although it takes up much of their valuable time. The study identified changes made to the CPD system and explains how the processes differ from those of previous years. The study will be beneficial to the SACQSP in improving the CPD system and highlighting its shortcomings, benefitting the quantity surveying profession as a whole. Item Open AccessValorisation of waste plastic bags in cement-mortar composites as coating of local sand aggregates: physicomechanical characterisation and potential uses(University of the Free State, 2015) Sanya, Emile Adjibadé; Kowanou, Houénou; Tchéhouali, Dèfodji AdolpheEnglish: Increasingly high quantities of waste plastics cause major environmental problems in Benin due both to the non-biodegradability of such by-products of the petroleum industry and to a lack of appropriate means of treatment. An option to valorise waste plastic bags is to use these in construction processes. This article studies the incorporation of waste plastic bags into cement-mortar with the aim of reducing proliferation. It explores the immediate consequences of cement-mortar-plastic combinations, such as changes in the resultant composite’s water absorption ratio and mechanical properties. The process of making the composite includes some main steps, during which waste plastic bags are first melted at 200°C-250°C and then mixed with sand aggregates. These coated aggregates are then mixed with cement and water into mortar. Moulded specimens of derived composites are then submitted to hydrothermal ripening and mechanical analysis. Experimental results allow optimizing the sand-aggregates coating process, providing data to locate the most appropriate ratio of plastic bags to be between 8% and 12% (wt/wt.mix):theoretically10.07%. The adopted practical value was 10%, leading to cement-plastic-mortar compositeswith90%reduction of water absorption ratio and 11.60% decrease in absolute density, compared to uncoated sand composites. Similarly, the mechanical strengths of composites were 8.83±0.34MPa in compression and 4.1±0.82MPa in 3-points flexural bending, corresponding to 74.1% and 48.1% weakening, respectively. These resistances were judged to be weak, with the result that the composites thus obtained cannot be used as the main elements of structural constructions. Potential applications are water-sealing/repellent materials in walls/soil, ending with good values of a wear-resistance index similar to commercial quarry tiles/stoneware. Item Open AccessThe relevance of ethical conduct in creating a competitive advantage for entry-level emerging contractors(University of the Free State, 2015) Buys, Fanie; Van Schalkwyk, TanyaEnglish: Small emerging contracting companies could possibly be flooding the construction industry, putting strain on the construction economy to stay afloat, support and sustain these participants. It is important for any organisation that deals with other individuals and organisations to understand the correct ethical codes of conduct in a business environment. To minimise unethical behaviour in the industry, new contractors need to both understand and apply the principles of ethical conduct in their business environments. This research is aimed at investigating whether ethical conduct among new entry-level emerging contractors can contribute to, and ensure their sustainable competitiveness in the South African construction industry. This research is also aimed at determining whether education and knowledge of entrepreneurship, business, project and construction management, in addition to building contracts, can contribute to new entry-level emerging contractors’ ethical conduct and sustainable competitiveness. The literature reviewed and the results of quantitative research among professional consultants in South Africa formed the basis of the study. Ethics is a sensitive topic within the construction industry; therefore, it is difficult to gather the data directly from contractors, as they are reluctant to participate for fear of revealing their identities and having this negatively influence their personal and business credentials. Unbiased respondents, who were not directly linked to emerging contractors and who were not afraid to give their objective opinions, were questioned and included architects, quantity surveyors, consulting engineers, project managers, construction mentors, and construction managers. The study revealed that ethics is an important factor in any business environment and that the correct application thereof can partially contribute to the sustainable competitiveness of new entry-level emerging contractors. This, in turn, should promote the long-term survival of a business. Furthermore, the knowledge of good management practices and building contracts can contribute to a successfully run business. However, the average new entry-level emerging contractor has insufficient experience and knowledge of the management of construction projects and of building contracts. The study should be valuable to construction-industry professionals, contractors and clients, as it provides them with research information on a problem area in the industry. Item Open AccessThe status quo of green-building education in South Africa(University of the Free State, 2015) Jacobs, EstiEnglish: There is countrywide a lack of relevant and necessary professional and tertiary institutions offering education and training in green building in South Africa. This causes a lack of awareness, knowledge and skill in green-building principles, which directly results in a lack in the introduction and implementation thereof on projects in the property-development industry. The purpose of this study was to determine whether tertiary institutions have started to incorporate green-building programmes and/or modules in current curricula. A literature review on green-building education, not only at academic institutions, but also at property industry educators was done to develop a questionnaire for reflecting the status quo of green-building education programmes at built-environment departments of six South African universities. These departments included quantity surveying and construction management; architecture; quantity surveying, construction management, and urban planning. The intention of this article was not to investigate curriculum renewal/innovation, but merely to examine the status quo of green-building education currently offered by tertiary and professional institutions in South Africa. Based on the findings, green-building education at built-environment departments of academic institutions in South Africa is lagging behind, and progress seems to be slow. There are, however, signs indicating that positive changes are being made to introduce and implement green-building education. Item Open AccessAn analysis of the quality of property management principles in the South African public sector – a focus on residential property(University of the Free State, 2015) Maletswa, Girles-kate; Boshoff, DouwEnglish: The aim of this paper is to investigate the applicability of public-sector residential property management as implemented by the Department of Public Works (DPW) at national level to current leasing management practices. The article investigates current best practice in leasing of residential property and evaluates the applicability of these practices to the DPW, as the landlord, when letting out surplus residential properties. The findings indicate that the DPW residential leasing management is not in line with best practices, together with inadequate capacity in terms of the size of the portfolio and the requisite expertise to adopt and implement effective lease management of surplus state-owned residential property. Thus the DPW property-leasing function should be subjected to a review and re-engineering of the current status quo with guidance from an independent property-management advisory committee or reference group.