How flexible is project management in practice? An exploratory research into project management of infrastructure projects in construction industry

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Abstract

Nowadays, flexibility of project management attracts practitioners and scholars attention as a must-have quality to enable managing project complexity. Increased complexity of infrastructure projects needs such management approach which takes the (increasing) complexity into account. Literature sheds light on importance of flexibility in project management while practice of project management in construction industry seems to be less flexible. The gap between what literature advises and what practice does, triggered us to look into the practice and see whether it aligns with literature or not. Hence the objective of this research was to explore the flexibility of project management in practice in the frontend phase of infrastructure projects. By means of a semi-structured questionnaire we asked practitioners to rate their last-completed project based on its management flexibility. In order to do so, we gave the participants a list 26 identified flexibility enablers from literature and asked them first to pick (in general) the 5 most important and 5 least important flexibility enablers. Next we asked them to rate the project management of the selected project based on those 10 picked enablers. By qualitative analysis of data gathered from 43 respondents from The Netherlands it reveals that the practice of project management has some degree of flexibility which implicitly has taken into action. Our research results can help practitioners to take the full advantage of flexibility in project management by making (more) explicit what they do implicitly. For further research it is recommended to test the practical applicability of flexibility enablers in case studies, explicitly investigating the suggested links to project performance.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 12th International Scientific and Technical Conference on Computer Sciences and Information Technologies, CSIT 2017
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Pages44-51
Number of pages8
Volume2
ISBN (Electronic)9781538616383
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Nov 2017
Event12th International Scientific and Technical Conference on Computer Sciences and Information Technologies - Lviv, Ukraine
Duration: 5 Sep 20178 Sep 2017
Conference number: 12

Conference

Conference12th International Scientific and Technical Conference on Computer Sciences and Information Technologies
Abbreviated titleCSIT 2017
CountryUkraine
CityLviv
Period5/09/178/09/17

Keywords

  • construction industry
  • flexible project management
  • infrastructure projects

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    Sohi, A. J., Bosch-Rekveldt, M., & Hertogh, M. (2017). How flexible is project management in practice? An exploratory research into project management of infrastructure projects in construction industry. In Proceedings of the 12th International Scientific and Technical Conference on Computer Sciences and Information Technologies, CSIT 2017 (Vol. 2, pp. 44-51). [8099425] Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). https://doi.org/10.1109/STC-CSIT.2017.8099425