Doctoral Dissertations

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Industrial Engineering

Major Professor

Rapinder Sawhney

Committee Members

Xueping Li, Joan R. Rentsch, Joseph R. Stainback


The focus of this research was to investigate the influence of cultural dimensions on risk-taking behavior among construction workers. Following a comprehensive literature review, a conceptual model was presented to evaluate `Intended Behavior in Risky Situations' in construction work environment. While the differences in risk-taking behaviors is generally acknowledged, the influence of culture is overlooked very easily. A total of 94 responses were collected from construction sites in the Knoxville Tennessee area by means of a questionnaire based on the conceptual model factors. The final sample consisted of 89 responses was evaluated using Partial lease Square - Structural Equation Modeling. The constructs were tested for their reliability, convergent validity and discriminant validity. Prior to testing the research questions, the conceptual model was tested for its reliability and predictability based on established criterion. Mediation analysis was conducted to test whether cultural dimensions (IDV, PDI, UAI, LTO, MAS) influence the relationship (path linkages) between the following factors. Moderation-mediation analysis was conducted to whether there is a difference in influence of cultural dimensions between Hispanic and Non-Hispanic construction workers. The results revealed that Masculinity and Long vs. Short Term Orientation have a significant impact on the factor relationships. Additional, the influence of cultural dimensions is different for Hispanic and Non-Hispanic construction workers. Contemporary construction industry should, despite the need for meeting project deadline and monitoring worker compensations, be aware of national culture's effect on individual behavior in general and workers' risk-taking behavior in particular. The assessment and perception of risk by a worker is always dependent on the situation. Understanding of national culture preferences which are frequently overlooked can improve the work environment and safety on-site.

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