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Enhancing Amicable Settlement of Construction Disputes Via A Systems Approach

Abstract

Given the uniqueness, complexity and the presence of multiple parties, disputes are inevitable in construction projects. None of the alternative means of dispute resolution easily offer a platform for amicable settlement; instead a third party is given a considerable stake in managing the whole process and making judgments, the result of which is often being in either favor or against a disputed party. This article evaluates the potential of the employer and contractor, often being the main protagonists, to settle their disputes internally within the existing system they reside. A sample size of 15 in each group was involved in this empirical study. A Mann Whiney U test revealed that the disputants prefer a consensual approach by internalizing their disputes so that a third-party intervention is not necessarily indispensable. A model on dispute process based on the theory of systems is identified and proposed for further research.

Keywords: Adjudication, Amicable settlement, Arbitration, Disputes, Mediation

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