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af Hällström, A and Bosch-Sijtsema, P (2020) Collaboration and Relationships in Nordic Infrastructure Project Networks. In: Scott, L and Neilson, C J (Eds.), Proceedings 36th Annual ARCOM Conference, 7-8 September 2020, UK, Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 245-254.

  • Type: Conference Proceedings
  • Keywords: collaborative project management model, project management, network theory, project networks, productivity, quality
  • ISBN/ISSN: 978-0-9955463-3-2
  • URL: http://www.arcom.ac.uk/-docs/proceedings/3a5fb0fb93814285de3bf81922240e84.pdf
  • Abstract:

    Since the turn of the millennium, project planners have tried reducing the adversity commonly seen in infrastructure construction projects by employing collaborative project management models, such as alliancing, early contractor involvement, or partnering. In the Nordic countries, several different models are currently being applied in practice. These models are utilised in the hope to ensure that public funds are used efficiently, to meet the needs of society through well-executed projects: but how do we define their success? Traditional project management has mainly focused on profits and other easily countable key performance indicators as a means to gauge the success of a project. As more intangible metrics, such as life-cycle perspectives, sustainability and societal good, become more relevant through both societal demands, but also the aforementioned collaborative project management models, the traditional values for success become fuzzier. Employing a project network perspective, we look at several infrastructure projects, employing collaborative project management models, in the Nordic countries and study the expectations on collaboration models as well as the actual collaboration between the different actors in these project models. The empirical evidence, consisting of 40 semi-structured interviews, points to a discrepancy in the application of collaborative project management models. On one hand, there seems to be clear benefits realised through employing such models, such as time savings and resource use reduction. On the other hand, the model and how it is understood and applied seems to influence the project outcome more than previously thought: not all roads lead to a good project outcome. Preliminary results indicate a collective interest to produce a common good in all involved actors, i.e. a well-functioning, qualitative infrastructure project, while simultaneously highlighting the discrepancy between expectations and actions.