Design and Construction Project Management

120 credits (MSc, 2 years )

The construction industry is facing numerous changes. The pressing agenda towards a more sustainable society means that new material, technology, methods and community needs are emerging. The complexity of these changes has created an increasing demand for knowledge and competences on top of the basic construction project management skills.  The overall goal of the programme is to train you as a student to analyze these changes and develop the necessary competences to solve the new challenges they create in a responsible and efficient manner.

Programme description

The Design and Construction Project Management, DCPM, programme aims at preparing technically qualified engineer students to the integrated management of the construction processes. It gives the students an advanced understanding of construction management by providing necessary tools, methods and theories relevant for the discipline and the practitioners as well as their application across the various phases of a project. The programme is designed to cover the entire construction process, such as early stages, design, construction production and facilities management. It presents an understanding of the sector complexity and the diversity of participating actors and stakeholders as well as their role in the process within the unique project-based environment of the industry.
 
The DCPM programme is intended to bridge between different worldviews, to exercise the ability to perceive and understand diverse perspectives and to support a reciprocal, mutual, understanding between actors in the construction sector such as user, client, architect, engineer, consultant, planner, or economist.

To work as a manager in the built environment sector means having knowledge of construction-specific elements like technical, environmental, legal, and contractual demands. You as a student will also be trained in skills involving knowledge on project management, financial accounting, research methods, Building Information Modeling (BIM), logistics, productivity, and, real estate and facility management. The strong collaborative characteristics of the construction industry, where projects are carried out in temporary and interdisciplinary environment also implies training and knowledge related to organizational culture, leadership, communication, teamwork, and decision making.
 
As a complement to your engineering degree, this programme offers a possibility to learn the competencies needed to perform on a high professional level in the construction and built environment sector. The programme is open to both engineers and architects, however, please observe that the Master's degree delivered is in engineering.

Location: Campus Johanneberg

Educational methods

The programme prepares students for a long-lasting professional career by providing a broad repertoire of problem-solving methods and by integrating theory and practice to understand and manage the complexity in the actualization of a construction project. 

Building on the complementarity of different disciplines, DCPM aims at providing you as future practitioners with a combination of prescriptive and analytical tools to face these challenges. The prescriptive tools aim at planning, organizing, managing and controlling the construction processes as well as addressing the individual, social and organizational aspects of the sector; the analytical tools, methods and theories, enable the future practitioners to develop a holistic view, be more reflexive about the context they evolve in and accordingly make informed decisions.

The programme offers a mixture of conventional lectures and seminars, supported by online resources and a variety of external sources of information. It benefits from the use of case studies, real-life projects and collaboration with industry. Student presentations and group work are important parts. To stimulate an efficient exchange of experiences and knowledge, a main pedagogical idea is to enhance your co-operative and communicative.
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Career opportunities

Career opportunities can be found in both public and private organizations. The core fields are projects focusing on planning, design, construction and facilities management. Examples on roles are project manager in a construction project organization, working with project development at an architectural office, design manager in a consultancy firm, managing properties in a housing company, developing health care facilities or working in supportive functions such as purchasing, sustainability, quality, health & safety. 

 

Connections to research and industry 

The programme builds on several scientific disciplines and courses are given by four different departments at Chalmers University of Technology; Civil and Environmental Engineering, Architecture, Technology Management and Economics and Energy and Environment. All teachers involved in courses perform qualified research in management fields and provide a close connection to the research being performed. The teachers also have a close cooperation with the construction industry. The faculty and our students' collaborate closely with CMB, Centre for Management of the Built Environment, for example by providing a mentorship program aimed for students in the Master's programme.

STUDENT INTERVIEW

“We are taught to be leaders that communicate well”
José Arturo Mejía Cárdenas, Spain/Mexico, Design and Construction Project Management​

Why did you choose this programme?
–I have a background in architecture and wanted to get the overall perspective of management in the construction industry. I appreciate that we focus on both the hard parts and soft parts in this field. The programme doesn’t only deal with the financial aspects of the management but also leadership. We learn how to lead different teams and there is a lot of emphasis on communication in the courses, which seems to be a key factor to success in this field. 

What have you been working on?
–We analyze what kind of strategies big companies like Ikea use to reduce the prices and at the same keep customers satisfied. We also do site visits to real construction projects in the city to follow the building process. We analyze how people work on the site, how they communicate and what they could do to make their work even more efficient. We work mostly in groups our in pairs with our assignments. 

What do you like the most about your programme?
–Our teachers and guest lecturers have a background or still work in the construction industry or other parts of this field and are glad to share their experience with us. In one of the courses, we had a lecturer talk about how shipping transportation has evolved through the decades where I learned a lot.  

What do you want to do in the future?
–I am interested in Swecos internship program. They offer a training programme where you can work in different areas in my field like design management, project management and site management. You get to work for three months in each area and then decide where you want to stay.  

Published: Fri 26 Nov 2010. Modified: Fri 18 Oct 2019