Decision Support System for Estimating Project Cost at Planning & During Construction Using Earned Value and Estimators’ Judgment Under Uncertainties in Saudi Arabia.

Project: Research

Project Details


The purpose of this research project is to develop a decision support system for estimating project cost at planning and forecasting project cost at completion during construction stage in Saudi Arabia. The system integrates earned value technique and estimators Judgment to improve the accuracy of the estimating process. The system accounts for the uncertainties connected to resources availability, market conditions, site conditions, interest rate, inflation rate, and job conditions. The system will model the uncertainties using fuzzy set theory as alternative method to simulation. Utilizing the fuzzy set theory allows the cost estimators to: (1) perform risk analysis for different scenarios of estimating and forecasting project total cost, and (2) perform cost analysis for different scenarios expressing vagueness and imprecision of forecasted project cost and time using a set of measures and indices. The proposed system is to be designed, developed and implemented in computer application to overcome recognized setbacks of present practises in estimating and forecasting project cost in Saudi Arabia. The system consists of the following main components; (1) central database module; (2) uncertainties modelling module; and (3) graphical user interface module. The central database module will be used to host the required information to carry out the estimation. This information include: historical data of actual cost of completed projects in KSA, previous interest and inflation rates. The uncertainties modelling module is used to define the uncertainties connected with different cost information. GUI is used to facilitate data entry and to display the outputs reports. The proposed system is expected to have a number of interesting features including: (1) integrating experts judgement in estimating new project cost at planning stage and estimating cost at completion of ongoing projects during construction; (2) enabling estimators to evaluate the risk that may arise with the estimated cost in much simpler way comparing with that of simulation, (3) considering the uncertainties involved in the forecasting project cost , and (4) accounting for the recourses (material, Labour, and money) availability in the future. To achieve the above mentioned objectives, the research is divided into the following main activities: (1) highlighting the setbacks of the current practices in Saudi Arabia to estimate and forecaster cost of construction projects, (2) communicating with local (Saudi) estimators, contractors and owners to exchange ideas and opinions, (3) designing and implementing the proposed methodology in a computer application using object-oriented programming, (4) testing the developed system on real case projects in Saudi Arabia, and (5) sharing the outcomes of the developed system with estimators in Saudi Arabia to validate its efficiency. It is expected that the proposed system will (1) be well received by owners (public and private sector ) and contractors in Saudi Arabia; (2) improve the management of assigned budgets and recourses, (3) help avoiding project cost overrun and behind schedule status, thereby saving money and time.
Effective start/end date1/11/1530/09/16


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