Exploring Cognitive Lock-In within the Construction Industry

Understanding the role of Cognitive Biases and Lock-In Phenomena within the context of implementing Circular Economy within the Construction Industry

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Abstract

The Dutch construction industry mainly operates on a linear economy model. However,
transitioning to a circular economy (CE) is seen as essential for meeting climate change
objectives and adhering to the Paris Agreement. However, the industry has been slow to
adopt CE principles, primarily due to its inherent aversion to risk and resistance to
change. This reluctance is further compounded by cognitive biases among stakeholders,
which create a "lock-in" effect that favours traditional practices over CE innovations.
The main question this research seeks to answer is, "How does cognitive lock-in at the
regime level of the construction industry hinder the implementation of the circular
economy?"
This research aims to explore how cognitive lock-in at the regime level impedes CE
implementation by examining socio-cultural barriers and the impact of cognitive biases
on decision-making processes.