Aims & Objectives

Aim 1

To review the Current Health and Safety Situation in the UK Construction Industry


Literature Review of Health and Safety Legislation.

Literature Review of Current Health and Safety Policies  in both Contracting and Consulting (Designers).

Investigation of Current Accident Statistics (HSE Website).

Aim 2

To define the term “Culture” in relation to business


Literature Review of Corporate Culture.

Business Culture of Contractors and Consultants (not necessarily Health and Safety Orientated)

Aim 3

With such strict guidelines (as found above) determine why accidents and fatalities still occur?


Investigate recent fatalities and accidents and find out who was to blame in order to establish a initial trend/hypothesis.

Approach both consultants and contractors and within this, different levels of the organisational hierarchy to find out why they think accidents still occur.

Compare the above field research and literature review to determine an initial conclusion.

Suggest overall reasons as to why accidents still occur.

Aim 4

Would the change of corporate culture within a construction business help to improve Health and Safety in the UK industry?


Thorough literature review investigating how corporate culture can change.

Compare culture in similar industries, e.g. manufacturing, to see if Health and Safety has changed and if so, improved significantly.  How did they manage to do that?

Aim 5

To encourage businesses to adopt a health and safety culture, can a link between improving Health and Safety and profitability be established?


Try to relate health and safety to actual costs incurred by a business.

Establish the incentives to a business of becoming health and safety orientated by conducting a literature review on this aspect.

Aim 6

To establish the changing attitudes to Health and Safety Culture according to company size and type (contracting/designing)


Survey each business' opinion to health and safety culture by conducting some form of questionnaire and interview analysis.

Compare each business investigated on health and safety performance, to their opinion on health and safety culture.

Investigate the above for designers and contractors for small/medium/large businesses.

For the above, approach a large number of businesses.  It is better to have too much information and also should one business should not respond then there will be others to investigate.

Back to top

University of Edinburgh
MEng Thesis 2008/2009
Graham Innes
Stephen Knox

Supervised by Dr Simon Smith