American Society of Civil Engineers


Innovations to Manage Disputes: DRB and NEC


by Roxene M. Thompson, S.M.ASCE, (Doctoral student, Dept. of Civ. and Envir. Engrg., Div. of Constr. Engrg. and Mgmt., Virginia Polytechnic Inst. and State Univ., Blacksburg, VA 24060), Michael C. Vorster, (David H. Burrows Prof. of Constr. Engrg. and Mgmt., Dept. of Civ. and Envir. Engrg., Virginia Polytechnic Inst. and State Univ., Blacksburg, VA), and James P. Groton, (Sr. Partner, Sutherland, Asbill & Brennan LLP, Atlanta, GA, and Washington, D.C.)

Journal of Management in Engineering, Vol. 16, No. 5, September/October 2000, pp. 51-59, (doi:  http://dx.doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)0742-597X(2000)16:5(51))

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Document type: Journal Paper
Abstract: How do we reduce conflict and litigation in the construction process? On one hand, some industry leaders focus their efforts on improving alternative dispute resolution mechanisms to resolve disputes. For instance, the American Society of Civil Engineers has introduced the Dispute Review Board (DRB) as a complementary provision to standard U.S. construction contracts and practices. On the other hand, other industry leaders focus their efforts toward making fundamental changes to the way construction contracts are written. The Council of the Institution of Civil Engineers in the United Kingdom has introduced the New Engineering Contract (NEC) to the construction industry as an alternative to presently used contracts. Both of these efforts have proved to be effective in improving communication, relationships, and the management and reduction of disputes. This paper explores the philosophy of the DRB and NEC and compares their success stories as approaches to combating adversarial relationships and rising litigation costs in the construction industry.


ASCE Subject Headings:
Claims
Conflict
Construction industry
Contract management
Dispute resolution
Litigation