Access and inclusivity of minority ethnic people in the construction industry
Abstract Despite no lack of interest in work in the construction industry, minority ethnic people are significantly under-represented as employees and particularly in senior posts. In part this is reflective of industry as a whole and certain ‘traditional’ industries in particular, and not only in this country. This chapter, based on four research projects conducted over the last five years, examines the structural reasons for this under-representation, barriers within education and training, and discriminatory practices which reduce opportunities for work. It suggests that the traditional culture and fragmented nature of the industry has been largely responsible for the industry escaping the kind of scrutiny to which other sectors have been subjected. However, there are encouraging signs that the industry is responding to societal pressures for inclusivity as well as addressing the shortfalls in essential industrial skills, which should mean an increasing utilisation of the skills that the minority ethnic population can bring to construction.