Changing the frame

In social science, a frame is how people understand a situation or activity. We can think of it as how we construct our understanding of a situation. In engineering, many projects are perceived from a ‘cost frame’. People looking at a project from a cost frame build their understanding of the project situation from a perspective of cost. In this situation, cost can be come the guiding concern; the parameter for which we optimise.

Time and quality are other common frames in construction projects. These frames guide our thinking by limiting options, which is helpful in some situations, but unhelpful if you want to establish new thinking. 

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