This thesis presents a new approach to construction contracting in North America. This new
approach is referred to as the New Canadian Contracting Method (NCCM). It has been developed
as a result of research into the existing contracting process used in North America generally and
in Canada specifically. The NCCM addresses four main issues that were identified in the
confrontational construction; dispute resolution problems and costs; the project execution team selection process; completion of contracts.
The NCCM addresses these issues without being prescriptive or by attempting to address one
party's agenda over another. This is because these two approaches have been common to previous
and unsuccessful attempts at addressing these issues. The new contracting method proposes the
following four elements.
First the designer and contractor are selected on a qualification basis. The designer and the
contractor may be brought on to the project team at a time when the contractor can add to
constructability by having input into production of the working drawings.
Second, a commercial risk evaluation process is introduced as a part of the negotiation or
tendering stage. This approach is innovative, and allows both the owner and the contractors to
have input to the identification and allocation of risk in the contract.
Third the administration of the contract involves a Proactive Mediation Process that is designed
to reduce the incidence of conflict and lower or eliminate conflict resolution costs.
Fourth the close-out of contracts is formalized with a process for realigning the completion of
the contract. This is done by reassigning outstanding obligations to the best advantage of all
The draft process was tested for validity. The consensus was that, with some modifications
(included in the thesis), the NCCM could be useful to the Canadian construction industry.
A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.