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Establishing the limitations of sustainable construction in developing countries: a systematic literature review using PRISMA.

Ogunmakinde, Olabode Emmanuel; Egbelakin, Temitope; Sher, Willy; Omotayo, Temitope; Ogunnusi, Mercy


Olabode Emmanuel Ogunmakinde

Temitope Egbelakin

Willy Sher

Temitope Omotayo


Establishing a more sustainable built environment is an increasing global concern for the construction industry. Despite the intrinsic and extrinsic obstacles the stakeholders face, huge efforts are required to transition to a smooth, sustainable construction (SC) practice. This study identifies and discusses cogent obstacles to SC in developing nations. The Preferred Reporting Item for systematic reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) approach was employed to establish research work in SC for developing countries. The databases used were Scopus and Web of Science. Meta-analysis of keywords was analysed thematically. The initial broad search returned 8,420 publications which were filtered and reviewed in-depth to fit the aim of the study, produced only 21 relevant publications from the years 2000–2021. The four identified themes of obstacles to SC in developing countries are as follows: construction professional training and education, clients' attitudes and awareness, construction industries' culture and capacity and governments' regulation, policies and economy. The key barriers identified from the metaanalysis include inadequate training and education amongst construction professionals, poor execution of sustainability ethics, poor populace attitude towards sustainability, poor awareness and understanding, dearth of precise data and integrated study and inappropriate priorities about sustainability. The originality in this study are themes drawn from millennium development goals (MDGs) and sustainable development goals (SDGs) publications related to SC. Consequently, the final framework presented a holistic approach to surmounting the established limitations and aided recommendations for future studies. Thus, setting a background for developing strategies to overcome the limitations and further attain sustainable development (SD).


OGUNMAKINDE, O.E., EGBELAKIN, T., SHER, W., OMOTAYO, T. and OGUNNUSI, M. 2024. Establishing the limitations of sustainable construction in developing countries: a systematic literature review using PRISMA. Smart and sustainable built environment [online], 13(3), pages 609-624. Available from:

Journal Article Type Review
Acceptance Date May 4, 2023
Online Publication Date May 23, 2023
Publication Date Apr 30, 2024
Deposit Date May 22, 2023
Publicly Available Date May 22, 2023
Journal Smart and sustainable built environment
Print ISSN 2046-6099
Electronic ISSN 2046-6102
Publisher Emerald
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 13
Issue 3
Pages 609-624
Keywords Construction industry; Developing countries; Sustainable construction; Sustainability
Public URL


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