Sustainable Construction Transition

A Kenyan Interior Design Market Segment Perspective

  • Samuel Kamau Joseph University of Nairobi
Keywords: Interior design, Kenya, Sustainability, Sustainable construction, Sustainability transition/ uptake


The construction industry has been identified as key to the sustainability agenda. Efforts towards improved sustainability compliance in the construction industry involve a socio-technical transformation. Such transitions are said to be purposive, of a wider perspective, multi-dimensional in nature, and are influenced by numerous factors. This paper focused on establishing sustainable construction (SC) uptake levels, including identification of key SC drivers and barriers with specific reference to the interior design market segment of the Kenyan construction industry. The study employed a quantitative research approach. For quantitative attributes, the study employed structured questionnaires to collect data from actively practicing architects/interior designers, electrical engineers, mechanical engineers, quantity surveyors, and contractors were drawn from the interior design market segment of the Kenyan construction industry in Nairobi City County. Data analysis employed the descriptive statistics of distribution (frequencies), proportions (percentages), central tendency (mean), and dispersion (standard deviation). Generally, the respondents ranked the overall uptake of the three dimensions of sustainability (economic, environmental, and social) as average- ranking as social, environmental, and economic in decreasing order of uptake levels. The study findings ranked sustainability driver categories as organization related drivers, stakeholder related drivers, economic-related drivers, and management related drivers; in order of decreasing influence. Lastly, barrier categories were ranked as economic-related barriers, professional/capacity related barriers, technology-related barriers, and societal/cultural related barriers, in order of decreasing influence. With the average sustainable construction practices uptake in the Kenyan construction industry, there is an implied call to action to leverage known sustainability drivers, while at the same time suppressing the known barriers. This implies significant room for improvement and an appropriate starting point for key construction project stakeholders as above identified.