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The South African Construction Industry – Some things to think about and act on!

The South African Construction Industry – Some things to think about and act on!

The current state of the South African construction industry is testament to the devastating effects of poor management, ineffective, self-serving leadership and the lack of collective vision as to what our future holds or could hold. I am not a politician and so I will stay away from the Governments lack of investment in infrastructure as that topic has been thrashed around for a long time and quite frankly once we have placed or mark on the ballot papers all we can do is hope for an investor friendly, safe living and working environment and demand accountability for service delivery that we expect from central and local government, failing which, we vote them out at the next election. Let’... »

13 Facts About the Chinese Dam That Slowed the Earth’s Rotation

13 Facts About the Chinese Dam That Slowed the Earth’s Rotation

The Three Gorges Dam is one of the most ambitious and equally controversial projects on the planet. Here are thirteen facts about Three Gorges Dam to help you decide whether this is an efficient man-made monument to innovation, or a destructive monstrosity? The Dam Was Originally Sun Yat-Sen’s Idea Often considered the father of modern China, Sun Yat-sen originally proposed the idea of the Three Gorges Dam all the way back in early 1919. Overthrowing China’s Manchu dynasty in 1922,  Sun Yat-sen sparked the revolution that would plant the seeds of what would eventually become the Republic of China. In an article titled, “A Plan to Development Industry”, Sun Yat-Sen proposed the idea of ... »

Hardhat Economic weekly review

Hardhat Economic weekly review

According to Stats SA, real GDP declined by a much larger-than-expected 3.2% q-o-q (annualised) in 2019Q1. This marks the biggest contraction since the global financial crisis. Compared with the first quarter of 2018, real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted) was basically flat at 0.1%. Measured from the production side, the GDP weakness was broadbased. Indeed, seven of the ten major sectors contracted in Q1. As signalled by the monthly Stats SA data, the major contributors to the GDP decline were manufacturing, mining and the trade (retail, wholesale, hotels and restaurants) sectors. From the demand side, the theme of industry weakness is borne out by the sharp decline in exports during Q1, as ... »

Toil and trouble beset construction and engineering sectors

Toil and trouble beset construction and engineering sectors

The spotlight on the construction services sector seems to have diminished after years of increased activity and its enhanced contribution to GDP after the 2010 Fifa World Cup. Empirical evidence from Statistics SA shows that the positive effects of derived activities from SA hosting the World Cup invariably increased the construction sector’s rand value-add to the domestic economy to 2014, before peaking in 2016. However, since 2016 the rand value and contribution of the industry to local economic activity have diminished considerably. With pessimism about the global economy growing throughout 2019, driven by disappointing data, a trade war and a political crisis in Britain, there is reason... »

Why the built environment should take lessons from Lego

Why the built environment should take lessons from Lego

There’s no denying the social and commercial value of our built environment. From housing, schools and office buildings to factories, stadiums and retail, our demands on buildings remain diverse and uncompromising. But as the world’s population continues to grow, the need to fundamentally re-imagine the ways we finance, construct and value these buildings has never been greater. There is an ever-increasing body of research exploring the application of circular economy principles within the built environment – from buildings as material banks to those that are reusable or redeployable. But as innovative technical solutions emerge and gain traction, how can we scale up successful models and en... »

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