COVID-19 pandemic and construction industry: Impacts, emerging construction safety practices, and proposed crisis management


  • Muzaffar Iqbal Tianjin University, College of Management and Economics, Tianjin, P. R. China.
  • Naveed Ahmad Northwestern Polytechnical University, School of Management, Xi’an, P. R. China.
  • Muhammad Waqas Xi’an Jiaotong University, School of Economics and Finance, Xi’an, P. R. China.
  • Maira Abrar Konkuk University, School of Business Administration, Seoul, South Korea.



COVID-19; measures; safety guidelines; crises management framework; construction industry


Goal: COVID-19 has a drastic effect on world economic progress and different industries. As the main contributor to countries' economies, the construction industry faced multiple challenges due to pandemics. Therefore, it's essential to identify the impact of COVID-19 on the construction sector and develop safety practices in construction processes. This study proposed necessary construction practices and a crisis management framework needs to adopt in the COVID-19 scenario.

Design/Methodology/Approach: At the first stage, data on negative impacts on the construction industry due to the pandemic was compiled. Then, experts were invited to propose emerging safety measures and practices to improve the safety of construction employees. Lastly, crises management framework was proposed, which provides an increased capability of taking measures during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Results: Results showed that COVID-19 has an adverse effect on the construction sector of different developed and developing countries. Therefore, there is a need to incorporate proposed safety practices at construction sites and apply crises management framework to increase construction productivity during the pandemic.

Limitations of the investigation: This study has certain limitations for instance the availability of data regarding construction sector was limited especially about small countries whose economies are not fully documented and construction sector is not regulated. The evaluation and assessment made in this study were generally subjective and it cannot be generalized to other sectors. This work could insist on enhancing the work plan for the future to encounter the uncertain circumstances for construction industry.

Practical implications: This work will be useful for construction managers and policy makers to cope with COVID-19 and to adopt necessary safety measure for construction sector. This work also be helpful for other industry stakeholders to pinpoint risk management efforts that could be suitable for their firms. industrialists may use these research efforts to sort out the problem areas and propose an appropriate framework for industry.

Originality/value: This study will provide guidelines to construction professionals for taking necessary measures to cope with COVID-19 and to apply a crises management framework.


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How to Cite

Iqbal, M., Ahmad, N., Waqas, M., & Abrar, M. (2021). COVID-19 pandemic and construction industry: Impacts, emerging construction safety practices, and proposed crisis management. Brazilian Journal of Operations & Production Management, 18(2), 1–17.



Research paper