Construction as a Stimulus Hub

Construction as a Stimulus Hub to Advance Research, Practice and Education

The project team proposes construction as a “stimulus hub” where construction industry stakeholders provide fundamental problems to a diverse group of discipline experts who act as problem-solvers. Specifically, graduate students in Tishman Construction Management Program (TCMP) and other disciplines (e.g., robotics, architecture, industrial engineering, business administration) are teamed up to conduct a research project with the guidance of an industry coach (from the company who provides a problem) and academic coaches (one from TCMP and the other from that discipline).

The project consists of a workshop for identifying fundamental issues, semester(s)-long research, and a research symposium for one and half years. The expected benefits include:

  • Industry-driven research projects for graduate students allow for action-based learning experiences to improve students’ industry and research experience and enhance their engagement.
  • These collaborative projects will lead to an immediate change in the quality of students’ learning, bringing real-world practices as well as new science and engineering into construction curricula.
  • Given the established academia-industry alliance program (i.e., UM Construction Industry Alliance Program) and collaboration with other disciplines that can benefit them, these research projects can be sustainable in the future.
  • Our industry-driven research projects can be replicated by other disciplines and groups who team up with specialized companies.
  • The results of these research projects will feed into the classroom as the PIs will incorporate the findings from these projects into their course content (CEE 431, CEE 530, CEE 531, and CEE 532), and provide opportunities for other students to be exposed to these learning opportunities and their outcomes.
  • The results will also be directly used by the involved companies. Their direct involvement with the students also opens opportunities to identify future recruits.
  • This project can have a visible impact on American higher education in construction, and can provide a model for other disciplines.

Project Team:

SangHyun Lee, Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering

Vineet Kamat, Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering

Carol Menassa, Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering