Lack of innovation and productivity in the construction industry compared to other industries is often explained by the institutionalised roles and fragmented nature of the construction value chain. Closer connections and collaboration (such as strategic partnerships) among architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) companies and across the values chain is often prescribed as a strategy to improve the performance of the construction industry. However, the institutional roles of AEC companies and their archetypical business models serve as important reference points for the sector. How these business models interact, and the friction created when they come in close contact is not well researched and understood. This paper identifies business models archetypes for architect, engineer, contractor and materials supplier based on workshops and interviews with practitioners. Friction is identified in and between the business models of AEC companies engaging in strategic partnerships. The analysis shows that architect archetypes face friction with regard to their profit formula and could benefit from profit sharing. The engineering archetypes face friction in their processes since they have to coordinate with specialists from other companies. Contractor and supplier archetypes face friction in their profit formula since the open books force them to alter business practices.
- Business model
- Engineering and construction sector
- Value chain