Technological Innovation

Subject ABPL90326 (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2015:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 02-Mar-2015 to 31-May-2015
Assessment Period End 26-Jun-2015
Last date to Self-Enrol 13-Mar-2015
Census Date 31-Mar-2015
Last date to Withdraw without fail 08-May-2015

This subject will not run every year.

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 3 hours per week
Total Time Commitment:

170 hours


Admission into one of the following courses:

MC-CM Master of Construction Management
MC-CONMG2Y Master of Construction Management (200 points)
MC-CONMG3Y Master of Construction Management (300 points)
MC-PROP Master of Property
MC-PROP2Y Master of Property (200 points)
MC-PROP3Y Master of Property (300 points)
MC-ARCH Master of Architecture
MC-ARCH2Y Master of Architecture (200 points)
MC-ARCH3Y Master of Architecture (300 points)

Or approval from the subject coordinator.

Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Prof Paolo Tombesi


Environments and Design Student Centre
Ground Floor, Baldwin Spencer (building 113)

Phone: 13 MELB (13 6352)

Subject Overview:

An examination of how new products and processes are developed specifically in or for the building sector; a discussion of what constrains their dissemination; and a theory of how success can be determined. The dialogue established with the students in the subject has a strong comparative bent, and seeks to emphasise how technological innovation in building takes on a different meaning depending on industrial context, markets and economic cycles. Australian government positions and characteristics of the Australian industry are compared to other geographic realities to emphasise this point. Overall, attention is directed at distinguishing innovation from invention and technological change.

Learning Outcomes:
  • To introduce students to product substitution processes and their logics in the construction industry;
  • To articulate the impact of ‘non-building’ factors over introduction and dissemination of change in building;
  • To clarify the extent to which the construction industry operates in conjunction with manufacturing, real estate, and policy sectors;
  • To enable students articulate the conditions enabling technological transformations to take place.
  • Class participation (10%), showing ability to discuss how project operations are structured against technological alternatives, risk allocation and definable constraints.
  • Gathering of discussion-specific data throughout the semester equivalent to 1500 words, showing students’ ability to research and collate information about relevant technological options in given industrial contexts/situations. This data form the basis of the essay.
  • Essay equivalent to 4500 words (90%, incorporating 30% for the data collection component) due in week 12, demonstrating one’s ability to think strategically and creatively in addressing key construction issues and/or planning construction project activities, as well as evaluating building output.
Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • Ability to peruse project archives;
  • Ability to undertake ideal-type analysis;
  • Understanding of the type of industrial data required in socio-technical studies;
  • Ability to identify and use building industry's databases;
  • Ability to derive theoretical positions from empirical work;
  • Ability to prepare and conduct technical interviews with industry representatives;
  • Ability to combine data from primary and secondary sources for the development of a technical argument;
  • Ability to translate these data into a cohesive piece of original research.
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Building Systems and Trade Specialties
Corporate Management
Energy Efficiency Modelling and Implementation
Energy Efficiency Modelling and Implementation
Melbourne School of Design multidisciplinary elective subjects
Research and Development
Tailored Specialisation
Tailored Specialisation

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