This thesis sought to explore Total quality management (TQM) implementation and barriers that need to be overcome due to differences between societal cultures, which have become a subject of intense discussion in the wake of the globalisation of the world economy. lnter-societal cultural barriers to TQM implementation were contrasted against the accepted organisational cultural barriers, which are well documented in established literature on this topic. A case study for the analysis was taken from the Libyan construction sector, where TQM is increasingly being reported as being adopted by companies keen to solve quality problems in their industry. This research explored the barriers that exist and that have acted to hinder the adoption of TQM practices using an in-depth survey of two Libyan construction companies (A&B). The findings of this research are presented as a conceptual framework upon which proactive measure may be planned to improve TQM adoption and which may also act as a guide for further research. Both qualitative and quantitative techniques were used to obtain primary and secondary data for the research and the TQM model framework was successfully used in a self assessment case study of companies (A&B) in Libya. The survey was able to identify critical barriers that were assessed in relation to other published data on inter-societal and intra-organisational barriers so as to identity a number of barriers unique to the Libyan case study. The overall results indicated that the case study companies were in the early stages of TQM initiatives and that there were large areas for improvement to overcome the barriers.

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