Measuring sustainability perceptions of construction materials
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As more owners seek to develop sustainable buildings, the construction industry is adapting to new requirements in order to meet owner's concerns. Material selection has been identified as an area where designers and contractors can have a significant impact on the sustainable performance of a building. Objective factors such as design considerations and cost constraints can play a role in the selection of materials. However, there may be subjective factors that could also impact the selection of materials. Building upon the potential impact of sustainability perceptions in an optimization model that can be used to help decision makers to select materials, this study defines and tests an instrument to identify and measure such perceptions. The purpose of this dissertation is to develop a conceptual instrument that measures the user-based assessment of product sustainability and validates decision-maker's perceptions in order to evaluate the contribution of subjective characteristics in materials selection. A survey of design and construction students and practitioners is carried out to capture the subjective factors included in the instrument. A Factor Analysis approach is used to refine and validate the measurement instrument and predict decision-makers' sustainability appraisal due to the factors considered.