Valdes-Vasquez, R., & Klotz, L. E. (2013). Social sustainability considerations during planning and design: Framework of processes for construction projects. Journal of construction engineering and management, 139(1), 80-89.


This research identifies 50 processes and categorizes them into a framework for integrating and evaluating social considerations in construction projects. These processes focus on the planning and design phases because they offer the greatest potential for influencing project performance. The concept mapping research method was applied to develop this framework on the basis of input from 25 experts in academia, industry, and government. Multidimensional scaling and hierarchical cluster analyses were used to organize the experts’ input into six categories defining social sustainability in construction projects: stakeholder engagement, user considerations, team formation, management considerations, impact assessment, and place context. Although previous research has recognized social sustainability as a series of processes, this study is the first to integrate them into a comprehensive framework. Practitioners can benefit from this framework, which will enhance existing sustainability assessment methods and help address the challenge of developing truly sustainable projects. This framework also provides academics with a tool for introducing students to social sustainability in construction projects. Future research could use this framework as a baseline, developing metrics using the processes included in the framework.