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Akade, S A (2017) Understanding the impact of culture on project execution in a developing country: an action research study of six international oil and gas companies in Nigeria, Unpublished PhD Thesis, School of Management, University of Liverpool.

  • Type: Thesis
  • Keywords: action research; construction project; developing countries; interview; liability; motivation; Nigeria; project management
  • URL: https://doi.org/10.17638/03009605
  • Abstract:
    Despite the research on project execution in developing countries and project practitioners executing projects in accordance with project management practices, projects in developing countries still experience a high rate of failure (Gu et al, 2013). Supporting this view, Nzekwe et al (2015) posit that project failure has become rampant in construction projects executed in developing countries. The researcher's organization is not exempted, hence the motivation for this research. This would suggest that project failure issues are not just due to technical factors, but encompass wider behavioural non-technical factors (Skok and Doringer, 2001). The aim of this study therefore was to contribute to project management literature by investigating the impact of culture on project execution in international organizations domiciled in a developing country. The overall goal was to understand and ameliorate the high rate of project failure in a developing country context with the objective to provide strategies for successful project execution. Applying a realist research approach, this research investigates project execution and management of a project team cultural variation from an industrial context. The methodology for the study was both quantitative and qualitative. Quantitative data was collected through survey questionnaire from 103 experienced project practitioners involved in projects execution in the six largest international oil companies (IOCs) in Nigeria. This sample was selected to close a research gap of limited studies in the oil industry of developing countries. The reliability of the data collected was established by the Cronbach coefficient alpha calculations. Qualitative data was collected through interviews with 20 respondents. Secondary data was sourced from review of literature. The results of the Frequency, Pearson Correlation and Coefficient of Determination analysis reveal a correlation between culture and project outcome, and also a correlation between culture and behaviour. The research concludes that culture has an impact on project execution in the IOC's operating in Nigeria, a developing economy. The results will benefit both practice and academics. In practice, this research provides insight regarding the challenges project managers face when leading culturally diverse teams and propose strategies aimed at curbing project failure. The recommendations will be synthesised into actionable items in the researchers practice as a deliverable of this Action Research approach. In academia, this research will serve as a resource base for secondary data for other scholars and researchers interested in carrying out research on the impact of culture on project delivery in a developing economy.