Title

Exploring the complexity of projects: Implications of complexity theory for project management practice

Date of this Version

1-1-2009

Document Type

Book

Publication Details

Interim status: Citation only.

Cicmil, S. J. K., Cooke-Davies, T. J., Crawford, L. H. & Richardson, K. A. (2009). Exploring the complexity of projects: Implications of complexity theory for project management practice. Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute. ISBN: 9781933890951

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2009 HERDC submission. FoR code: 1503

© Copyright Project Management Institute, 2009

ISBN

978-1-933890-95-1

Abstract

Exploring the Complexity of Projects: Implications of Complexity Theory for Project Management Practice explores the process and findings of the implications of the complexity theory for project management theory and practice. The golden triangle (project deadline, budget and output) makes the standard definition of project management processes, skills and knowledge paradoxical and divorced from practice. This monograph contains research of management processes and capabilities in innovative project settings and highlights the challenges in contemporary project management practice.

This research suggests that in order to define and conceptualize project complexity, the building blocks of project must be more properly defined. These include:
• Individual and group relationships
• Individual and group cohesion
• Definition of key performance indicators
• Sources of project failure

In practical terms, this research aims to propose and encourage a critical but constructive way of explaining, debating, and deliberating project management and project performance issues that can lead to a wider awareness, knowledge, and development of skills and competencies that match the complexity of projects as experienced by practitioners in contemporary organizations.

In Exploring the Complexity of Projects: Implications of Complexity Theory for Project Management Practice, project managers will find the realities of project management and the strategies to incorporate the complexity of a project into the original scope.

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This document has been peer reviewed.