4.1.5 Sharing Sensitive, Proprietary or Confidential Information
Collaborative contracting arrangements contemplate the sharing of much more information under different times and circumstances than is customary under traditional models. Confidentiality agreements serve to make all IPD participants aware of the importance of the proper uses of shared confidential information. Through careful participant selection and contract drafting, IPD participants achieve a level of comfort that project information exchanged will be utilized only for project purposes.
From the perspective of collaboration and integration, traditional delivery methods suffer because the individual participant’s financial success is not necessarily tied to the project’s success. Given human nature, project participants will work hardest to preserve their own financial success. In traditional delivery methods, that behavior sometimes results in consequences that are detrimental to the project, other participants, or both. Methods of compensation that tie the participant’s success to the overall success of the project are powerful tools for unifying individual and project success. In IPD, individual financial success relies on project success. For that reason, the IPD participant’s natural instinct to protect and improve its own financial interest results in behavior that benefits the project.
There are many options available to parties interested in crafting methods of compensation that align individual success with project success. The appropriateness of any method will necessarily depend on the unique characteristics of any given project and its participants. Due to their inclusion of incentive provisions, IPD contracts can be more complex than traditional construction contracts. Also, to the extent that financial consequences flow from the attainment of specific goals (e.g., completion milestones, health and safety requirements, life-cycle costs, etc.), disputes may arise afterward over whether and to what extent certain goals were achieved. Careful contract drafting, clear and unambiguous definitions of incentive milestones, and due diligence in team selection, will minimize the likelihood that such disputes will arise.