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Assessment of risk paths in construction projects

Risk identification is the most important step in project risk management (PRM), as the risk models are constructed based on previously defined risk sources and their interrelations. Although previous studies have concentrated on a one-way relation between risk factors, there are cause-effect relationships between risk sources, events and consequences. 'Risk paths' represent the causal relationships between risk sources, events and consequences and they should be assessed during risk identification, rather than individual risk factors. Furthermore, a complete risk assessment cannot be achieved without 'vulnerability' that shows the characteristics of a system to react to risk factors. Major aim of this paper is to propose a 'risk path assessment model' to overcome this shortcoming in PRM by combining 'risk path' and 'vulnerability' concepts. The 'risk path assessment model' includes risk and vulnerability (RV) parameters as well as their direct and indirect relationships. The model assesses RV by evaluating the level of vulnerability and magnitude of 'change' in a given project, so that the final impact of risk events on the project cost and duration is obtained.