Friday, 7 November 2008

ARCOM Website

The website for ARCOM (Association of Researchers in Construction Management) needs regular maintenance. This evening, I have whiled away a couple of hours on extending the tree structures for browsing all the journals that are indexed on the site. I am working on enabling this browsing function so that a user can click on a journal's title and see the volume numbers listed, then clicking on a volume number reveals the issues, and clicking on an issue reveals a list of the papers in that issue. The citation of each paper is presented, and clicking a paper reveals its abstract, and a URL to where the paper is available on the web. The programming of all of this has been incredibly complicated, and I have been glad to have had the help of Darren Booy and Weisheng Lu in developing this, and the functionality I wanted is finally there. What I now wonder is whether anyone would want to browse the issues in this way, or if they would just prefer to search the database, which has been possible for some time. After recent additions to the database, I am now adding articles from the following series:
  • ARCOM Annual Conferences
  • Building Research and Information
  • Construction Innovation
  • Construction Papers
  • Construction Management and Economics
  • Construction Innovation: Information, Process, Management
  • Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management
  • International Journal of Construction Education and Research
  • International Journal for Construction Marketing
  • Journal of Construction Procurement
  • Journal of Construction Research
  • Journal of Corporate Real Estate
  • Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology
  • Journal of Financial Management in Property and Construction
  • RICS COBRA Conferences
  • RICS Research Papers
  • Unpublished PhD Theses
Each new addition to this list requires me to get permission from the publisher to reproduce the text of the abstracts, which is copyright. Until now, the only people to have refused such permission was the American Society for Civil Engineers, who felt that their own website was all the exposure they wanted. This was a shame, because they publish several relevant titles in our area. Perhaps, as this service grows, they might be persuaded to relent.

The idea for building this database grew out of my wish to catalogue everything that had ever appeared in Construction Management and Economics, which I became editor of in 1993. It has gradually evolved over the years and I hope it will continue to grow, and offer a powerful resource to construction management researchers everywhere. With any luck, it will continue to be available to everyone free of charge.

1 comment:

Weisheng said...

Congratulations to Will for openning this blog and making significant progress on the ARCOM website. Will has a dream that through the ARCOM website visitors can easily access the journals that are listed above.
My task was to create a tree structure and by clicking the leaves of the tree (nodes) visitors can be redirected to different journals.
This is not new at all; we all have experienced this when we browsed a journal on website. The challenge is we have about ten journals here, with each has different volumes and issues. Ideally a program should
read all the records that are stored in a database created by Will.
Then the programme should analyse the data, automatically group
different journals, recogising different volumes and issues under each journal. This turned out to be extremely complicated, if not
completely impossible. Then I decided to generate this tree structure manually. Fortunatelly I found a handy tool to do this; creating a tree strcutre is like doing some click. I programmed the functions when a user clicks a node by using ASP. But the next problem is: adding so mnay different nodes is extremely tedious. I was amazed that Will managed to do this.

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