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UK construction practitioners' experience of adjudication

Agapiou, Andrew A. (2013) UK construction practitioners' experience of adjudication. Proceedings of the ICE - Management, Procurement and Law, 166 (3). pp. 137-144. ISSN 1751-4304

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Abstract

This paper aims to fill a gap in the literature by exploring the construction professionals' interaction with adjudication at a key stage in its evolution based on a focus group analysis of industry experiences. The research aims to provide a richer understanding of the professional's interaction with the adjudication process more generally, as well providing detailed insights into the issues that different professional groupings have experienced with the process, more specifically. At first glance, the conclusions of the research offer few surprises, confirming the importance of financial aspects of the process, the timescales involved, the quality of adjudication professionals and the role of legal practitioners in adjudication. A closer examination of the focus group analysis, however, suggests that the loss of confidence in the process is attributable to a myriad of interrelated factors linking professional reputation with understanding of commercial realities and business relationships, lawyer-client power imbalances and dispute tactics, the role of lawyers with dispute complexity, parliamentary intentions and the timescale of the process. Although, it is recognised that on-going changes to adjudication will add more uncertainties into the context, the findings of this study will act as a springboard from which further research will be conducted.