This thesis investigates challenges encountered by UK Black (Afro-Caribbean) and Asian Construction Businesses (BACBs). It focuses on the effects of UK policies that offer entrepreneurial support to assist BACBs’ survival and growth. Despite significant interest and intensive debates, empirical research has been inconclusive with regards the effectiveness of the implementation of such policies on the survival and growth of BACBs. Moreover, there was no conceptual model or theoretical framework that had been applied in order to aid the understanding of their survival and growth. Hence, the aim of this study is to close this research gap by developing a framework, and to make recommendations for more appropriate support mechanisms to assist in the survival and growth of BACBs.
A critical literature review of the effectiveness of support offered by the UK Government led to the development of an integrated model of growth factors that informed both the pilot study and the main questionnaire design. Some of these growth factors were contextual, and so necessitated a qualitative approach. However, because the model was validated through in-depth case studies, the pilot study, main questionnaire and case studies were all undertaken and analysed within an ontology that leaned towards an objective-constructivist perspective, and an interpretivist epistemology. A mixed methodology (qualitative and quantitative) approach was also employed, in order to get a better understanding of the relationships and for robust analyses.
The findings indicated that support take-up by the respondents was extremely low. However, support mechanisms of networking and continuous professional development assisted the respondents’ growth. Therefore, when constructive, well organised public support is offered, there is a high probability that it will be taken-up. Policy should be targeted to assist in areas (growth intentions, innovative practices and good human resource management) which impacted on turnover and profits in order to provide sustained growth.
School of the Built EnvironmentFaculty of Technology, Design and Environment
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