Potential of virtual design construction technologies to improve job-site safety in gulf corporation council

Muhammad Tariq Shafiq, Muneeb Afzal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


With the advancement of digital design practices in the global construction industry, different aspects related to the project lifecycle are extracting their benefits, including making improvements in safety. The objective of this paper is to ascertain the awareness of these technologies, their potential, and any barriers related to the use of different virtual design construction (VDC) tools, such as building information modeling, virtual reality, augmented reality, and geographic information systems, to improve job-site safety in Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries. The paper presents an overview of the GCC construction industry and highlights current safety management practices and problems in the region. The potential of VDC tools for improving job-site safety is discussed and presented. The study has used a questionnaire survey to identify the drivers and barriers of using VDC tools in improving job-site safety management in the GCC region. The results indicated that "designing emergency and evacuation plans" and "fall-hazard prevention strategies" are the two best safety applications of these tools if used proactively. Similarly, "lack of knowledge about return on investment for VDC tools" was considered as the predominant barrier, preventing stakeholders from using these technologies to improve construction safety. These results will help the GCC construction industry to build a strategy for the digitalization of proactive constructability analysis techniques for improving job-site safety. Overall, due to the multilingual dynamics of this region, it is recommended that VDC tools should become more prevalent so that the transfer of safety information and hazard prevention becomes easier, mitigating safety risks.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3826
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2020


  • Barriers
  • Building information modeling (BIM)
  • Gulf corporation council (GCC)
  • Job-site safety
  • Virtual design construction (VDC)
  • Virtual reality (VR)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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