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  Procuring and delivering large publicly funded construction projects for the Common Good

   School of Computing, Engineering & the Built Environment

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  Dr C Thomson, Dr N Callaghan  Applications accepted all year round  Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

Reference number: SCEBE-20-003-CTSF

Aim & Scope

Increased public investment is seeing a rise in large scale multi-million construction projects which play a significant role in providing services but also in shaping the urban environment and communities within which they sit. Examples can be seen in recent major public investment projects in Glasgow such as the new Queen Elizabeth Hospital and the redevelopment of the old Western for Glasgow University. Both projects represent significant impact on society and should provide social value beyond the traditional economic indicators through reporting of Community Benefits and aligning with the Social Value Act (2013).

This research explores the emerging Common Good framework (Felber 2015) asking whether it can help readdress the balance and focus on the long term benefits of society, promoting fairness, equity and social justice (Reich 2018). It has the potential to challenge the way large public projects are funded and procured and also their delivery by the construction industry. Alternatives to the dominant neo-liberal economic model are emerging and will be reviewed such as Inclusive Growth (Scott 2017), Just Transition (Heffron 2018, Swilling and Anneke 2012), One Planet Economics (Jackson 2016, Thorpe 2015) and UN Sustainable Development Goals each aligning with the Common Good framework.

This research examines the procurement and delivery of large publicly funded construction projects and exploring whether a Common Good framework can be developed and support the promotion of social value. Two different lens will be applied: 1) the investment criteria and procurement of these projects and 2) the alignment of from the lead developer of their corporate responsibility (CR) and supply chain management.

The research will draw on existing collaborations with Health Facilities Scotland (HFS) amongst others.

How to Apply

This project is available as a 3 years full-time or 6 years part-time PhD study programme. 

Candidates are encouraged to contact the research supervisors for the project before applying. 

Please note that emails to the supervisory team or enquires submitted via this project advert do not constitute formal applications; applicants should apply using our Application Process page, choosing Civil Engineering or Built Environment and their preferred intake date.  

Please send any other enquires regarding your application to: [Email Address Removed]

Architecture, Building & Planning (3) Business & Management (5)

Funding Notes

Applicants are expected to find external funding sources to cover the tuition fees and living expenses. Alumni and International students new to GCU who are self-funding are eligible for fee discounts.
See more on fees and funding.


For further information, please contact: Dr Thomson -
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