Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering (MSE)


Civil and Environmental Engineering and Construction

First Committee Member

Pramen P. Shrestha

Second Committee Member

Moses Karakouzian

Third Committee Member

Neil Opfer

Fourth Committee Member

Ashok Singh

Number of Pages



Construction practitioners have their goals to complete projects within time without exceeding the allocated budget. However, studies have shown many projects overrun their allocated budget and face delays due to numerous reasons. Some of the main reasons are lack of efficient construction and financial resource management, lack of proper planning, and unavailability of new construction technologies, as well as ineffective supervision and communication, design changes, and unskilled workers. In some studies, mobilization costs, along with the participation of Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs) in projects were identified as factors affecting the cost and schedule performance of construction projects. However, no statistical analysis has yet been done to explore the nature of the relationship that mobilization costs and DBE participation have on the project performance metrics of highway projects. The purpose of this study is to analyze highway project data and understand the impact of mobilization costs and DBE participation on their performance.

The highway project data were collected from the Nevada Department of Transportation (DOT) and Texas DOT. The statistical analysis of the data did not find any significant correlation of mobilization costs with project performance metrics, such as construction cost growth, schedule growth, change order growth, or construction intensity. However, the study found that the highway projects performed significantly better in terms of schedule growth for projects with mobilization percentage above 9%. Another analysis of DBE participation data found a significant positive correlation of DBE participation with schedule growth, and a significant negative correlation of DBE participation with change order growth. The correlation coefficients of DBE participation with schedule growth and change order growth from the Spearman correlation test were found to be 0.28 and -0.27 respectively, which are considered relatively weak correlations, but the results were found to be significant. A comparative analysis of the projects with and without DBE participation found that the projects with DBE participation did not perform better in terms of schedule growth, compared to projects without DBE participation. However, the projects with DBE participation performed better in terms of change order growth, compared to projects without DBE participation. Further analysis is required, with more comprehensive highway projects’ data from other DOTs, to analyze the relationship of mobilization costs and DBE participation with project performance metrics, along with the factors that affect DBE participation and mobilization costs. This will provide a clearer picture of the reasons why DBE participation and mobilization costs affect project performance and help in taking necessary steps to improve project performance.


Change order growth; Cost growth; Disadvantaged Business Enterprise; Highway Projects; Mobilization cost; Schedule growth


Civil Engineering

File Format


File Size

1800 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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