CIVIL ENGINEERING 365 ALL ABOUT CIVIL ENGINEERING



AbstractExtended reality (XR) technologies are increasingly being used as a novel research instrument to facilitate scientific inquires in the construction engineering and management (CEM) domain. By allowing humans to interact with immersive environments in controlled and monitored experimental settings, XR technologies have opened new opportunities for researchers to conduct CEM research involving human participants or concerning human behavior. Yet, XR-enabled research, as an independent, rigorous methodology for the CEM domain, is still underexplored. This paper serves as an effort to build an organized knowledge base and workflow for using XR technologies in various CEM research areas and methodological contexts. The paper first investigates the status quo of XR-enabled CEM research, by identifying current research areas in the CEM domain where XR technologies are considered the preferred or recommended methodological solutions. A process model for XR-enabled research is then proposed, with actionable recommendations about how XR-enabled research should be planned, designed, implemented, analyzed, verified, and validated. This process model is demonstrated with two illustrative case studies. Last, the paper discusses the philosophical, methodological, and technological roots of the evolution of XR-enabled CEM research and describes our vision of more enabling, adoptable, and value-adding XR-enabled research in CEM in the near future.



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