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This study investigates the existence of certain predetermined causes of materials wastage and their degree of contributions to materials waste generation (MWG) in building projects. The population of the study consists of construction professionals in building projects in Lagos state, Nigeria. The survey involves the usage of a designed questionnaire to elicit information from the targeted population via convenience sampling method. The data were analysed using frequency, mean score and t-test. The research confirms the existence of all the predetermined causes of materials wastage in Nigerian building projects. It also reveals that these causes contribute significantly to MWG but at different level on Nigerian building projects. Poor supervision contributes most to materials waste generation while bulk purchases is least among all the causes. The study therefore recommends that practitioners should be cognizant of these causes of materials waste and introduces measures to curb them to minimize MWG.





The construction industry is the backbone of every nation, as it is one of the forces driving the socio-economic growth and development of nations of the world Saidu, I. and Shakantu, W.M.W., (2016a). It improves the quality of live through the provision of infrastructure like roads, schools, hospitals, and other necessary basic facilities Saidu, I. and Shakantu, W. M. (2016c). Construction industry is the leading sector in any country [3] . In spite of the benefits derived from this industry, the activities of the industry generate increasing quantities of waste which has created a bad image for the industry; and also deplete the limited natural resources Adewuyi, T. O. and Odesola, I. A. (2015). Horvath, A. (1999) described the construction industry as one of the largest and most important industries; and at the same time the major consumer of natural resources and one of the largest polluters. The wastes generated by the industry have not been well managed, thereby causing considerable health and environmental problems Imam, A., Mohammed, B., Wilson, D. C. and Cheeseman, C.R. (2008). Also, these wastes have affected the performance of many projects in Nigeria Oladiran, O. J. (2009), Ameh, J. O., and Itodo, E. D. (2013), Adewuyi, T. O. and Otali, M. (2013). Jayamathan, J. and Rameezdeen, R. (2014) opined that ineffective material planning and control on construction sites could result to poor performance and unplanned outcomes of construction projects. Construction projects are faced with severe problems of time and cost overruns, as well as construction waste (Dania, A. A., kehinde, J. O. and Bala, K. (2007), Tam, V. W. Y. (2008), Abdul-Rahman, I., Memon, A. H. and Abd-Karim, A.T. (2013)).

According to Ekanayake, L. L. and Ofori, G. (2004) any material apart from earth material which needs to be transported elsewhere to the construction sites or used within the construction site itself for the purpose of land filling, incineration, recycling, reusing, or composting rather than the intended specific purpose of the project due to material change excess nonuse, or noncompliance with the specifications or being a byproduct of the construction process is regarded as construction waste. Shen, L. Y. and Tam, V. W. Y. (2002) defined building material wastage as the difference between the value of materials delivered and accepted on site and those properly used as specified and accurately measured in the work after deducting the cost saving of substituted materials transferred elsewhere in which unnecessary cost and time may be increased by the material wastage. Al-Hajj, A., and Hamani, K. (2011) see construction waste as the difference between what was purchased and what was actually used. Waste is any surplus or unwanted material persistently causing environmental issues and global warming Nagapan, S., Abdul-Rahman, I., Asmi, A., Memon, A.H. & Latif, I. 2012. Construction waste can have a significant impact on cost, time, quality and sustainability, and also on the success of projects Nagapan, S., Abdul-Rahman, I., Asmi, A., Memon, A.H. & Latif, I. 2012.

Construction materials significantly contribute to the total cost of construction, and the wastage of these materials will negatively impact on the contractors profit, construction cost and duration, and can cause dispute among key project participants Adewuyi, T. O. Idoro, G. I.  and Ikpo, I.  J. (2014). carried out an Investigation into Waste Management on Construction Sites in South Western Nigeria. The study focused on the dangers posed by material waste in the construction industry, ways of minimizing construction waste, ways of keeping proper site records for accountability sake. And recommend effective waste management measures. This research adopted questionnaires to collect data from construction professionals, and employed tables and statistical indices for the data analysis. The study revealed that material wastage increase the cost of construction project and reduce contractor’s profit. And attributed construction was to poor management and lack of effective waste management awareness. The study recommended that construction waste management should be recycled and reused. And through giving incentives to workers for proper handling, material wastage is reduced; and trained personnel should be used as supervisors.


It is evident that previous studies have focused only on the perception of construction professionals, leaving out the site supervisors, operatives and craft men who are the ones that are both physically and directly involved in the carrying out the construction works and the production of the finished building. An effort to carry the site supervisors, operatives and craft men, who are the majority stakeholder in construction, will help improve the performance of construction activities and reduce waste production and other related losses during the construction stage of the projects. Adewuyi, T. O. and Otali, M. (2013) describe the site supervisors and the site operatives as people who are directly involved in the art of putting the raw materials together to form the building envelope.


The aim of this study is to assess the perception of construction operatives, Tradesmen and Artisans on materials waste in construction, with a view to encouraging better performance of construction projects in Nigeria. To achieve this aim, the following are the objectives of the study;

To identify the most wasteful material produced during construction operations.

To determine the most important factors that influence material waste production during construction work.

To assess measures of minimizing construction material waste.

To identify the most important benefit of material waste.


The followings are the hypothesis that guide the study and they stems from objectives (i), (ii) and (iii)

H1: There is no significant statistical difference in the perceptions of the various groups of operative and craft men concerning the most wasteful material produced during construction operations.

H2: There is no significant statistical difference in the perceptions of the various groups of operative and craft men concerning the factors affecting material waste in construction.

H3: There is no significant statistical difference in the perceptions of the various groups of operative and craft men concerning the measures of minimizing construction material waste.


However, it is clear from previous researches both at local and international level that these groups of stakeholders have been neglected. It is against this backdrop that this study is predicated. The outcomes of this study will enable the clients, consultants, contractors, and construction professionals know that site operatives and craft men are aware of material waste and are conscious of contributing to their reduction during construction. The outcome will also add to the body of knowledge available on construction waste management. Overall, construction operatives and craft men will be considered important stakeholders in the scheme of things regarding making decision in construction operations that relate to construction waste generation and management. Evaluated waste control measures in construction industry in Lagos, Nigeria. The study assessed the forms, causes and factors incidental to waste and measures to effectively control construction waste. The study adopted.

1.6    Limitations of the study

In every research work, it is likely that the researcher may encounter some limitations. The researcher encountered some challenges during the period of carrying out this research. Some of these challenges include the dearth of materials for a proper and effective research work constituted a major limitation. Again, how to get the true and required information from the students through questionnaire also constituted a constraint in the study.



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