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Influence of Project Governance

FEATURED PAPER

Influence of Project Governance on Project Performance: Evidence from Nigerian Case Studies

Samuel Ekung*1; Lillian Agu1; and Ndidi Iheama2

1 Department of Quantity Surveying

2 Department of Building,

Imo State University

Owerri, Nigeria

 



ABSTRACT

This study evaluated project governance in two mega projects and determined the influence of the related practices on performance. Data were collected using structured questionnaire and examination of project archives. The study data were analysed to determine the level of adherence to project governance essentials and the protracted implications on project performance. Respondents’ assessment of the projects’ performance using Kerzner’s criteria, cost and time overrun were analysed using the mean score and the test of hypothesis involved Spearman Correlation test. The result indicated that project governance structure must be improved and such improvement will increase the performance of mega projects. To improve project governance in mega projects therefore, the study suggests the need for stakeholders to ensure effective implementation and selection of project governance structure using industry’s established principles and based on prioritised needs. The study provides useful insight into the problem inhibiting mega project performance and efficient use of project governance in the public sector in developing countries.

KEYWORDS: Influence, Mega Projects, Project Governance, Project Management and Nigeria.

  1. INTRODUCTION

Mega projects are both complex and risky in quantitative and qualitative terms (Garland, 2009). This understanding suggests that non-conventional governance systems are required for their implementation. Mega infrastructure projects have high degree of uncertainty, long duration and large number of stakeholders (Miller & Hobb, 2005). These project are also linked with significant impacts on the communities, the economy, technological development and the environment (Zhai, 2009). Project governance characteristically provides the best indication of who is involve in the project; and who in the project organisation is responsible for any course of action through its life cycle. The term project governance has attracted research attention considerably in the construction industry notably in the last decade. It is therefore immersed in definition uncertainty. Many institutions and industries have also applied the term to suit their application (Bekker & Steyn, 2008). However, the overriding application in the context of the construction project is centred on three basic variables: organisation; management; and policies framework (Patel & Robinson, 2010). In mega project delivery, project governance involves the coordination, management and prompting the distribution of resources to attain agreed goals (Patel & Robinson, 2010).

In the last few years, the construction sector in Nigeria and notably South-South region, has witnessed numerous complex infrastructure projects in roads, housing, and tourism. The states of these infrastructures have attracted numerous recommendations at national and international levels. There are also a number of these projects straggling behind the baseline of defined objectives. In view of addressing problems affecting project performance, researchers in project management have moved from the construction related determinants to ‘front-end’ issues such as project governance (Dunovic, 2010). This significant departure stems from the emerging realisation that even well managed projects fail under the watch of the clients, consultants and the society (Klakegg et al., 2007). However, while these studies are very few, the focus is mainly on joint venture projects and none is conducted in Nigeria public sector. Status quo prevails despite the enormous challenges facing the public sector of developing countries. While this research area has been widely explored in other parts of the world, a study that investigates this relationship in Nigeria is not apparent (Ogunsina & Ogunsemi, 2012).

To examine mechanics for improving the delivery of mega projects, this study assessed the influence of project governance on project performance using case studies. The objectives are to assess the level of adherence to essentials of effective project governance, and to evaluate their influence on project performance. The influence is hypothesized on whether actions and in-actions governing project implementation influence the attainment of project objectives. The determination of this objectives and their achievement is significant in a number of ways. First, the evaluation will enhance improved mega project delivery and overall realisation of project objectives. Second, it will facilitate stakeholders’ assessment of their level of effort towards the realisation of projects’ set objectives and how their actions and in-actions influence project performance notably at project organisation levels. Third, the outcome will improve the procurement option used and the projects procured with them amidst enhanced effective assessment of stakeholder’s input at the governance level.

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About the Authors


Samuel Ekung

Owerri, Nigeria

 


Samuel Ekung
is registered Quantity Surveyor certified by Quantity Surveyor Registration Board of Nigeria. Mr. Ekung obtained his first degree in Quantity Surveying from the University of Uyo, Uyo, Nigeria with Second Class Upper Division in 2008. He bagged double Master Degrees in Quantity Surveying from the University of Salford, United Kingdom with Distinction in 2013 and Construction Management from the University of Uyo, Uyo, Nigeria in 2014. He is currently studying for PhD in Construction Management with interest in Cost Management of Sustainable Buildings in the Tropics. Mr. Ekung is deeply rooted in construction and cost management discourse. He is currently a Lecturer in the Department of Quantity Surveying Imo State, Owerri, Nigeria. Mr. Ekung is an experienced Quantity Surveyor with industry footprint in many high profiled projects. His research interests include procurement, stakeholder management and sustainability cost management. His research outputs are published in many refereed international journals and peer reviewed conferences proceedings. Samuel Ekung can be contacted at [email protected]

 


Lillian Agu

Owerri, Nigeria

 


Lillian Agu
is registered Quantity Surveyor certified by Quantity Surveyor Registration Board of Nigeria. Ms. Lillian obtained her first degree in Quantity Surveying from the Imo State University, Owerri, Nigeria with Second Class Upper Division in 2007. He is currently studying for M.Sc. in Quantity Surveying with interest in Strategic Management of Quantity Surveying Firms. She is currently a Lecturer in the Department of Quantity Surveying Imo State, Owerri, Nigeria. Lillian is an experienced Quantity Surveyor with industry footprint in many high profiled projects in the contracting sector of Nigeria. Her research interests include Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) uses in the construction sector and estimating and tendering. Lillian Agu can be contacted at [email protected]

 


Blessing Iheama

Owerri, Nigeria

 




Blessing Iheama
is registered Builder certified by the Council for Registered Builders of Nigeria. Mrs Blessing obtained her first and second degrees in Building and Construction Management from the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria in 2006 and 2010 respectively. She is currently a Lecturer in the Department of Building, Imo State University, Owerri, Nigeria. Blessing is an experienced Builder with industry footprint in many high profiled projects in the contracting sector of Nigeria. Her research interests include climate change implications in building development practices and sustainability. Blessing Iheama can be contacted at [email protected]