Fit for Purpose project management adjustments

Activity: Talk or presentationTalk or presentation at a conference


No studies have been reported into what adjustments are made to project management methods at project level and why these adjustments are made. Therefore this research aimed to investigate how project management is actually applied at public clients in the Netherlands and to what extent these practices currently could be called adaptive. The main research question was: “What are the fit-for-purpose adjustments to project management methods used by public clients in Dutch (wet) infrastructure projects”. A literature review provided theoretical starting points for the research.
The empirical data collection consisted of a multiple case study into six projects at three different Waterboards by performing 13 interviews. Cross-case analysis shed light on adjustments in practice and their underlying reasons.
In the analysis, a distinction was made between organisation-specific adjustments and project-specific adjustments. Some organisation-specific adjustments occurred from these cases and 16 project-specific adjustments were found, ranging from additional financial mandate to shared risk registers and skipping phases or phase documentation. ‘Time’ was the most prominent underlying reason for the project managers to make adjustments. The overall amount of adjustments found was fairly limited, raising the question whether it is really about ‘adapt or die’!
Period11 Apr 2019
Event titlePM congress 2019: Research meets Practice: towards Project Management 3.0
Event typeConference
LocationDelft, Netherlands


  • infrastructure
  • Dutch public clients
  • Fit-for-purpose
  • project management
  • project management methods
  • adjustments
  • project success