Understanding the influence of safety climate and productivity pressure on non-helmet use behavior at construction sites: a case study

Xiaoying Li, Heng Li, Martin Skitmore, Fan Wang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
86 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose: Neglecting to wear a safety helmet can result in serious injuries at construction sites, but the cause of such unsafe behavior has not been fully understood. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to provide a means of systematically understanding on the causes of non-helmet use behaviors at construction sites. Design/methodology/approach: This paper utilizes the system dynamics (SD) modeling to portray the construction system works at project, management and individual levels to understand the relative importance of safety climate and productivity pressures. A real-time helmet use behavior tracking system (the Eye on Project (EOP)) is developed to provide an objective record of helmet use practices. Using the data collected from the EOP, the proposed SD model can be calibrated to simulate the influence of safety climate and productivity pressures on the non-helmet use behaviors of construction workers. 

Findings: The data collected from 91 responses through the questionnaire survey were utilized to develop the SD model, which consists of two balancing loops and two reinforced loops. The mean absolute percentage error is further used to evaluate the model. The results show that a positive safety climate significantly reduced the rate of non-helmet use behavior. 

Originality/value: This study divided the primary contributors of non-helmet use behavior into three levels for the SD model development. The SD model can be used to develop policies for mitigating helmet misuse, which in turn improves the safety performance of construction sites.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-90
Number of pages19
JournalEngineering, Construction and Architectural Management
Issue number1
Early online date1 Feb 2021
Publication statusPublished - 10 Feb 2022
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Understanding the influence of safety climate and productivity pressure on non-helmet use behavior at construction sites: a case study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this