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Anders Roos (email), Lotta Woxblom, Denise McCluskey

The influence of architects and structural engineers on timber in construction – perceptions and roles

Roos A., Woxblom L., McCluskey D. (2010). The influence of architects and structural engineers on timber in construction – perceptions and roles. Silva Fennica vol. 44 no. 5 article id 126. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.126

Abstract

This study considers structural engineers’ and architects’ perceptions of structural timber in multi-story construction contexts. Qualitative approaches – interviews and focus groups – were used to investigate attitudes, perceived norms, and perceived factors that hamper or facilitate the prescription of wood use in construction. Wood was perceived as an appropriate building material. Architects’, and even more so engineers’, perceptions of negative aspects of wood focused on decay, instability and sound transmission. Although wood-based construction was seen as a required professional skill, it was not expected to improve one’s professional status. Positive aspects of wood in construction included its strength, environmental friendliness, simple handling and appropriateness for use in conjunction with industrial methods, whereas knowledge gaps and weak support from the wood industry have reduced the use of wood among structural engineers and architects. Both professions perceived their influence on material selection to be weak. They sensed that most of the influence over material selection rested with developers and contractors. The paper contains suggestions on how to make these two professions more influential advocates for wood in construction.

Keywords
timber-frame building; qualitative analysis; specifiers; stakeholders; timber design

Author Info
  • Roos, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Products, P.O. Box 7008, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail anders.roos@sprod.slu.se (email)
  • Woxblom, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Products, P.O. Box 7008, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:
  • McCluskey, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Products, P.O. Box 7008, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:

Received 9 March 2010 Accepted 14 October 2010 Published 31 December 2010

Available at https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.126 | Download PDF

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