Causes of Variation Orders in Road Construction Projects in Tanzania

Roziana Saki1, Chunho Yeom2, *
1 Master of Infrastructure Planning and Development, International School of Urban Science, University of Seoul, Seoul, South Korea
2 International School of Urban Science, Law School 517, University of Seoul, Seoulsiripdaero 163, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul 02504, South Korea, Korea

Article Metrics

CrossRef Citations:
Total Statistics:

Full-Text HTML Views: 396
Abstract HTML Views: 35
PDF Downloads: 34
ePub Downloads: 15
Total Views/Downloads: 480
Unique Statistics:

Full-Text HTML Views: 211
Abstract HTML Views: 30
PDF Downloads: 31
ePub Downloads: 13
Total Views/Downloads: 285

Creative Commons License
© 2022 Saki and Yeom.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the International School of Urban Science, Law School 517, University of Seoul, Seoulsiripdaero 163, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul 02504 South Korea; E-mail:



Variation order has long been an essential component of road construction projects worldwide, being predominantly observed in Tanzania, where road projects are particularly vulnerable.


This study aimed to determine the sources of variation orders in Tanzanian road construction projects and provide a feasible remedy, such as reduction or eradication.


A desk study and questionnaire were utilized as the research approach and analyzed using the relative importance index (RII) method.

Results and Discussion:

The results reveal that the most significant circumstances causing variation orders are financial problems, weather conditions, differing site conditions, changes in design, poor scheduling, lack of coordination, delay in approval, unavailability of equipment, and lack of communication.


Recommended strategies to minimize variation orders were that all involved parties should plan before the commencement of on-site work and perform detailed site investigations. Consultants should ensure that the design and specifications are within the approved budget. All participants were required to spend adequate time in the pretender planning phase. Finally, accurate information and research should be obtained regarding procurement procedures, materials, and plants.

Keywords: Variation order, Relative important index, Road construction, Tanzania, Design, Equipment.