The paper evaluates innovation through value co-creation through six international contractors.

Construction businesses balance market and project risks in resourcing innovation and value creation. Technical, technological and management innovation are considered using the marketing lens of the service-dominant logic. The co-creation of value is a primary concept, which is largely unexplored in construction, especially related to innovation. Co-created by main contractors and clients is defined as value generated in context and use.

The paper is part of a programme of work, applying an interpretative qualitative approach. The method for data collection was semi-structured interviews, derived from six major international main contractors. Thirty-nine interviews were conducted with a range of senior management, functional heads and project managers responsible for identifying innovation and value creation opportunities.

The overall findings fall into three main areas. First, management perceived construction to be suppliers of technical expertise. Second, projects are perceived in terms of expert inputs. Third, associated tasks are conducted to meet programme schedules and requirements. Opportunities to co-create value are largely pursued reactively and opportunities to innovate through top down or project induced capabilities are largely overlooked. Where innovation occurred it was largely initiated through a combination of co-creation drivers supported by management pull factors rather than innovation drivers and a technology push.

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