UK Project Management Round Up


By Miles Shepherd

Executive Advisor & International Correspondent

Salisbury, England, UK


The Summer in Europe is usually pretty quiet, with little happening except social events – the so-called Silly Season.  There have certainly been many social events in UK in the past month, Glorious Goodwood (second only to Royal Ascot in the flat racing season) and the Commonwealth Games to name but two.  The latter event is a major multi-sport event, second only to the Olympic Games in size and coverage so is a pretty significant event requiring considerable project management skills to bring off successfully.  The Games are winding down as I write but from all reports, the Scots have made a great success of what they call the Friendly Games – I’d say this is another example of great British project management!

However, the project world does not really stop, whatever the season and there are some topics to report; notably in the Defence and transport sectors.  There has also been a development in the long running saga of the Association for Project Management’s (APM) application for a Royal Charter and the wider project world has lost another great leader.


UK based readers (and many others too) will be aware that APM applied to the Privy Council for the grant of a Royal Charter.  Such an award identifies the occupational group as a profession so far as the British Government is concerned.  It has significance beyond the UK borders:  many commonwealth countries understand and support the concept of Royal Charters and given that there are 71 member states in the Commonwealth, a significant worldwide grouping will see Project Management as a profession.  APM set out to achieve Chartered status for the project management profession in 2007.  Support was, and remains, strong with 50 organisations across the public and private sectors supporting the case for raising professional standards in project management.  Project and programme management are vital contributors to the UK’s economy.  The National Audit Office reports that expenditure on the 43 most complex projects in government are worth over £200 billion alone.

Chartered status is seen to offer a number of benefits:

  • It offers assurance to users of project management services through the association’s regulating authority;
  • It acknowledges project professionals as experts in their field, offering a clear differentiator between professionals and others.
  • It provides a framework for improving project performance.
  • It will raise the profile and value of project management.

The road to Royal Charter has been tortuous, and strongly opposed by the Project Management Institute (PMI).  However, in February 2013, The Minister for the Cabinet Office decided to recommend that a Royal Charter should be granted to APM and the application was then considered by a committee of the Privy Council that unanimously reached its recommendation that a Royal Charter should be granted to APM, and that this recommendation would be placed on the list of business for the meeting of the Privy Council to be held in October 2013.  This decision was challenged by PMI who submitted a request for a Judicial Review which was heard in London in early July.  Having reserved judgment at the substantive hearing of the Judicial Review claim held at the High Court in London, the Judge, Mr Justice Mitting, handed down his judgment on 17 July 2014.  The Judge dismissed the PMI claims on all grounds.  Full details of the written judgment can be found at http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2014/2438.html .


To read entire report, click here

About the Author 

pmwj17-dec2013-shepherd-AUTHOR IMAGEMILES SHEPHERD flag-uk

Salisbury, UK 

Miles Shepherd is an executive editorial advisor and international correspondent for PM World in the United Kingdom. He is also managing director for MS Projects Ltd, a consulting company supporting various UK and overseas Government agencies, nuclear industry organisations and other businesses.  Miles has over 30 years’ experience on a variety of projects in UK, Eastern Europe and Russia.  His PM experience includes defence, major IT projects, decommissioning of nuclear reactors, nuclear security, rail and business projects for the UK Government and EU.   Past Chair and Fellow of the Association for Project Management (APM), Miles is also past president and chair of the International Project Management Association (IPMA).  He is currently Director of PMI’s Global Accreditation Centre and the Chair of the ISO committee developing new international standards for Project Management and for Program/Portfolio Management.  He was involved in setting up APM’s team developing guidelines for project management oversight and governance.  Miles is based in Salisbury, England and can be contacted at [email protected].

To view other works by Miles Shepherd, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/miles-shepherd/.

Welcome to the August 2014 Edition of the PM World Journal

David Pells,

Managing Editor

Addison, Texas, USA

Welcome to the August 2014 edition of the PM World Journal (PMWJ). This month’s edition may be the largest and deepest edition yet, with 42 articles, papers, reports and book reviews by 50 different authors in 21 different countries.  An additional 40+ news articles about projects and project management around the world are included. More than 30 countries are represented by authors or subjects this month.  I am proud to say that the reputation and readership of the PMWJ continue to grow based on the contributions and support of so many authors around the world.

Invitation to Share Knowledge

We invite you to share your knowledge and experience related to program, project and portfolio management.  A wide variety of articles and papers, case studies and reports, book reviews and news stories are included in the PMWJ each month.  Share knowledge and gain visibility for you or your organization; publish an article, paper or story in the PMWJ.  See our Call for Papers in the news section of the PMWJ this month; if interested in submitting something for publication, check out the Author Guidelines on www.pmworldjournal.net, then just send your original work to me for the next edition at [email protected].

This month in the Journal

We begin with 6 Featured Papers this month, by 8 authors in 5 different countries. Dr. Christina Chin and Boon Wue Chung in Malaysia have contributed a paper titled “Prototyping a project management application for collaborative research environment in the academia world.”  Prof Vladimir Voropajev, Prof Yan Gelrud and Ms. Xoxana Klimenko in Russia are the authors of “Functional models for project management activities from position of different interested parties.”  Eugene McGrath in Ireland is the author of “A Study on the Use of Cost Control Procedures in the Oil and Gas Industry.”  Hassan Al-Barrani in Oman is the author of “Assessing Contractor Schedules in Oman against the GAO’s Scheduling Best Practice.”  And Bob Prieto, Fluor Vice President in the USA is back in response to our call for papers on managing megaprojects with a paper addressing even bigger projects, in “The Gigaprogram Challenge.”

Featured Papers are generally significant works that contribute to the P/PM literature, often by academic researchers.  If you are associated with an academic institution, involved in serious research related to project or program management, and are not required to publish only in refereed journals, consider submitting your research results for PMWJ publication.  We publish quickly and can assure you that your paper will be read.

3 Series Articles are includedthis month, by 4 authors in 4 different countries. Another article in the series on the broad topic of Maturity in Project Management within organizations by Russell Archibald, PhD (Hon) (Mexico) and Darci Prado, PhD (Brazil) is included this month. Their article is titled “Impact of PPPM Maturity on the Success of Construction Industry Projects in Brazil.” Don’t miss this new article on this important topic by two leading authorities on the subject. Dr David Hillson, aka The Risk Doctor based in the UK, has contributed another Risk Doctor Briefing article titled “Stress Testing for Risk Management.”  Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon) in Australia is the author of “Project Categories”, the first in a new “Series on Project and Program Categorization.”  Series articles are by experts in the program and project management field, some specialized and others with very broad knowledge.  Don’t miss these contributions each month.


To read entire paper (click here)

About the Author

david-pellsDAVID PELLSflag-usa

Managing Editor, PMWJ

David L. Pells is Managing Editor of the PM World Journal, a global eJournal for program and project management, and Executive Director of the PM World Library. David is an internationally recognized leader in the field of professional project management with more than 35 years of experience on a variety of programs and projects, including energy, engineering, construction, defense, transit, high technology and nuclear security, and project sizes ranging from several thousand to ten billion dollars. He has been an active professional leader in the United States since the 1980s, serving on the board of directors of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) twice.  He was founder and chair of the Global Project Management Forum (1995-2000), an annual meeting of leaders of PM associations from around the world. David was awarded PMI’s Person of the Year award in 1998 and Fellow Award, PMI’s highest honor, in 1999.He is also an Honorary Fellow of the Association for Project Management (APM) in the UK; Project Management Associates (PMA – India); and Russian Project Management Association SOVNET.  From June 2006 until March 2012, he was the managing editor of the globally acclaimed PM World Today eJournal.  He occasionally provides high level advisory support for major programs and global organizations.  David has published widely, spoken at conferences and events worldwide, and can be contacted at[email protected].

To view other works by David Pells, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/david-l-pells/.

For more, visit www.pmworldjournal.net and www.pmworldlibrary.net.

IPMA Research Awards – Call for Applications


By Kasia Pachuta

IPMA Excellence Awards Office

Krakow, Poland


The IPMA Research Awards aim to promote excellent research to enhance project management. With these annual awards IPMA recognises recent outstanding contributions to the development of the field and profession project management through professionally conducted research.

General criteria

Researchers may come from academia, other research institutions or industry. Researchers may come from disciplines other than project management but must contribute to the development of project, program management, project-oriented companies or any element named in the ICB – IPMA Competence Baseline.

The candidates apply with a research project. The research project must have had at least a duration of one year and must be completed, when the application is handed in. Completion of research project may date back to 1. January 2013.

If a researcher (or lead researcher of a team) wins an IPMA Research Award, this person must not apply for the IPMA Research Awards the following three years.


  • IPMA Young Researcher Award: Cutting edge research of a young researcher (born 1979 or later, or the candidate can prove that he/she is less than 10 years involved in research).
  • IPMA Research Award: Cutting edge research project of a researcher or a team. The application of interdisciplinary projects is encouraged.


In each category we distinguish one prize. Winners can present their research at the annual IPMA Research Conference, where they are honored.

Evaluation criteria

In the evaluation the jury considers the research results as well as the research process. The evaluation criteria are:

• Research results achieved

• Originality and innovation

• Theoretical foundation

• Transparency and professionalism of research process

• Practical relevance

• Management as research project

“IPMA provides a platform for young researchers to showcase their work and encourages them to work with, and learn from, experienced researchers and practitioners. Getting my research validated and awarded at this level has motivated me to continue my research work in the governance domain, so that I can continue my contribution to the existing knowledge base of project management. I would encourage my fellow researchers to apply for this award and become part of this exclusive club of project management thought leaders. “  –  Dr. Muhammad Ehsan Khan, IPMA Young Researcher Award 2013 Prize Winner 


To read entire report, click here

About the Author 

pmwj18-jan2014-bednarczyk-PHOTO2 PACHUTAKasia Pachuta flag-poland

IPMA Award Office Manager

Cracow, Poland

Kasia Pachuta has a very international educational background. She studied in Poland, France, USA and South Korea, graduating from Cracow University of Economics. Kasia can be contacted at [email protected]

To see other works by Kasia Pachuta, visit her author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/kasia-pachuta/

Project Management in Spain – monthly report


By Alfonso Bucero

International Correspondent & Editorial Advisor

Madrid, Spain

The PMI Madrid Chapter continues advancing on spreading out our profession

On July 25th 2014, the PMI Madrid Spain Chapter counts on 1.479 members. If on May 28th, as a Chapter President (says dice Francisco Javier Rodriguez), I was proud of getting signed a collaboration agreement between PMI Madrid Chapter and ASTIC Foundation (created by ASTIC Association, and composed by officials from the Body of Information Technology from the Spanish Public Administration), during last days we have had other important contact with the Spanish Public Administration, getting aligned in that way with one of the strategic objectives from the PMI Madrid Chapter.

So, last Tuesday July 15th, representatives from the PMI Madrid Chapter BOD and his president (Francisco Javier Rodriguez) met the Managing Director of the Public Foundation from the Community of Madrid, Concepción Guerra Martínez. In a long interview, they had the opportunity to introduce her to the PMI Madrid Chapter as a professional and nonprofit organization and what it promotes, what means the project management professionalism.

As a result from that meeting, the PMI Madrid Chapter has agreed their participation in one of the forums organized by the Community of Madrid where they will  present that association, and what Project management means, to all officials in that Community. We sincerely believe that this will be a great opportunity to present and introduce the project management profession in the public sector. From here we thank Mrs. Concepción Guerra and her team her kindness and great disposition for receiving us in her office.


To read entire report, click here for (English) or (Spanish)

About the Author 

alfonso-bucero-bioAlfonso Bucero flag-spain

Contributing Editor

International Correspondent – Spain

Alfonso Bucero, MSc, PMP, PMI-RMP, PMI Fellow, is an International Correspondent and Contributing Editor for the PM World Journal in Madrid, Spain. Mr. Bucero is also founder and Managing Partner of BUCERO PM Consulting.  Alfonso was the founder, sponsor and president of the PMI Barcelona Chapter until April 2005, and belongs to PMI’s LIAG (Leadership Institute Advisory Group).  He was the past President of the PMI Madrid Spain Chapter, and now nominated as a PMI EMEA Region 8 Component Mentor. Alfonso has a Computer Science Engineering degree from Universidad Politécnica in Madrid and is studying for his Ph.D. in Project Management. He has 29 years of practical experience and is actively engaged in advancing the PM profession in Spain and throughout Europe. He received the PMI Distinguished Contribution Award on October 9th, 2010 and the PMI Fellow Award on October 22nd 2011.  Mr. Bucero can be contacted at [email protected].

To see other works by Alfonso Bucero, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alfonso-bucero/

Project Management Update from Argentina


By Cecilia Boggi, PMP

International Correspondent

Buenos Aires, Argentina

An Argentine mega-project is gaining visibility throughout the region: The nuclear reactor “Atucha II” reached 50 percent of its power on Tuesday July 22, and is providing 330 megawatt-hours of energy to the Argentine System (SADI) and in November plans to reach its 100 percent when the central delivers 745 megawatt/hour.

The Nuclear Power plant is based on natural uranium and heavy water, “Atucha II” located on the right bank of the River Paraná de las Palmas in the city of Lima (115 km north from Buenos Aires capital), has started producing power last June, initially generating a few megawatt/hour and from June 27 reaching 30 percent of its power. With the entry into this trade regime, this nuclear power plant is going to produce the equivalent to the energy consumed by about 3 million people and is expected to replace some of the fuel imports that the country is using today.

“Atucha II” is a modern nuclear plant, similar to the recently constructed plants in Germany, as well as in Spain “Trillo” and “Angra II” in Brazil, built in accordance with the construction licenses, standards and programs of inspection timely defined by the Argentina’s Nuclear Regulatory Authority (ARN).

From the point of view of design and construction it has upgraded security systems, which include the concept of defense in depth with successive barriers, containment sphere, physical separation of redundant safety systems, and service monitoring program, among other items.

The project completion and implementation of “Atucha II” has been developed by the company Nucleoeléctrica Argentina SA (NA-SA), composed by 79% by the Department of Energy’s Office, 20% by the Atomic Energy National Commission and 1% by the Binational Entity of Energy Ventures. The Management was given by the Engineer José Luis Antunez.

This company also manages the production and sale of energy generated by the other two of the three nuclear power plants that are in Argentina, “Atucha I” and “Embalse” totaling 1,750 megawatts hour.

Besides the own benefit of energy production for the country, having completed this project is an important milestone since it was suspended on more than one occasion, the last for over 10 years. The cornerstone of “Atucha II” was placed in 1980, but the project was stopped in 1994 and re-launched in 2006, when the Government reignited the Argentine Nuclear Plan.


To read entire report, including great photos, click here for (English) or (Spanish)

About the Author 

Cecilia BoggiCECILIA BOGGI flag-argentina

International Correspondent

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Cecilia Boggi, PMP is founder and Executive Director of activePMO, giving consulting services and training in Project Management and Leadership skills in Argentina and Latin America.

After graduating with a degree in Computer Science Engineering from Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina, she has managed software development projects and PMO implementation projects for more than 20 years both in the government and private sector. Cecilia also has graduated from an Executive Program in Business Management at Universidad del CEMA. She holds the Project Management Professional (PMP®) credential since 2003, is certified as SDI Facilitator from Personal Strengths© and is alumni of the PMI Leadership Institute Master Class 2012.  Ms. Boggi is Past President of the PMI Buenos Aires Argentina Chapter, and is a founding member of the PMI Nuevo Cuyo Chapter and PMI Santa Cruz Bolivia Chapter. She has been designated by PMI in the role of Mentor of Region 13, Latin America South, for the years 2014-2016.  Cecilia has participated in the development of PMBOK® Guide 5th Edition, leading the Chapter 9, Human Resource Management, content team and she is professor of Project Management in some Universities and Institutes in Argentina, Chile, Peru and Bolivia.

She can be contacted at [email protected]  and www.activepmo.com.ar

To view other works by Cecilia Boggi, visit her author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/cecilia-boggi/.

If you cannot be a poet, be the song…. INTERNATIONAL PROJECT MANAGEMENT


By Anil Seth


The system of nature, of which man is a part, tends to be self-balancing, self-adjusting, self-cleansing. Not so with technology.

~E.F. Schumacher, Small is Beautiful, 1973

Many of us are executing both Domestic as well as International Projects. There are numerous practices followed at various stages of project which may differ in International Projects approach. From general prospective some of the areas are drafted and detailed.

At the start of any International Project the following governs:

For Distributed Execution in all EPC areas a Global Project Model is created. This model has a standard Electronic Systems where in all guidelines and checklists for the following are available:

  • Company Wide
  • Business Wide
  • Functional Wide(or departments)

Owner of this structured Project Global Project Model is Project execution Head.

Apart from PEM/RCM/QM/PPM a VMC (Value Management Coordinator) is also nominated for international projects (required during early phase of project).

Role of VMC is to structure various formats and legal code requirements of the SITE country.

The following are responsibilities of VMC as a minimum:

  1. Implementing A Value Plan: Creates common goal and shared values.
  2. Evaluates which Value Improving Practices will be applied (this an indirect Contract survey)
  3. Provides Mechanism & Processes for effective Team (cross functional) Integration & performance.
  4. Identify issues (both internal & external) that may impede team integration (Since Teams may have vertical/horizontal scope split, the SOW and execution philosophy setting is required early)
  5. Evaluate programs to recognize rewards (same programs may not be effective in all countries)
  6. Documenting the value management.

Another key Post managed early is PCM (Project Contract Manager). PCM is only authorized (and responsible) for issuing Contract (Potential) Change alerts.

This PCM profile has following responsibilities as a minimum:

  1. Manages & administers contract, including changes.
  2. Implements claim prevention management processes (EPC internal/external changes are notified early).
  3. Supports the forecasting of final contract cost.
  4. Manages effective contract close-out.

All these Portfolios follow standard Baseline Process:

  •  Define Baseline
  •  Aligning systems to baseline
  •  Refining to the baseline
  •  Executing to the baseline

The companies in international business management are relatively transparent on sharing of cost data with engineering wing. This is not by virtue of choice but only by the nature of business. The control on dollar management is a relationship of company’s cost determined during proposal and original value coming out after negotiating order, the “May be deviation” value is generally governed by engineering.


To read entire article (click here)


About the Author

pmwj25-aug2014-Seth-AUTHORAnil Sethflag-india

Gurgaon, India

Mr. Anil Seth is working as Project Manager in Fluor’s Indian office at Gurgaon. Fluor Daniel India Private Limited (Fluor India) provides a full range of engineering, design, procurement, and construction management services to Indian and overseas clients. Fluor India is an established quality provider of engineering, procurement, construction management (EPC) and project management services for Fluor’s energy and chemicals, power, mining, and industrial projects, and is a key support office for Fluor facilities located in North America, Africa, the Middle East, Europe, and Asia Pacific

Earlier to Fluor, was in Larsen & Toubro Ltd. at Faridabad, India and managing the Project Engineering Manager Portfolio for hydrocarbon projects. Before joining Larsen & Toubro Engineering and construction division he has worked for Indian Petrochemicals Corporation Limited. He holds B.E. degree with Honors in CHEMICAL Engineering from Panjab University Chandigarh India and has also done Diploma in Environmental Management. He is certified for Harvard Manage Mentor and specializes in Building High Performance cross functional Task Force as well as Converting Breakeven Projects to Profitable scenario. He can be reached at [email protected] or [email protected]

To see other works by Anil Seth, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/mr-anil-seth/

About the Company

Fluor Corporation (NYSE: FLR) is a global engineering and construction firm that designs and builds some of the world’s most complex projects. The company creates and delivers innovative solutions for its clients in engineering, procurement, fabrication, construction, maintenance and project management on a global basis. For more than a century, Fluor has served clients in the energy, chemicals, government, industrial, infrastructure, mining and power market sectors. Headquartered in Irving, Texas, Fluor ranks 110 on the FORTUNE 500 list. With more than 40,000 employees worldwide, the company’s revenue for 2013 was $27.4 billion. For more information, visit www.fluor.com



Oto Gurnita and Asning Suryo Nindyanto

Project Department, PHE ONWJ



Pertamina Hulu Energi (PHE) Offshore Northwest Java Lima Field is experiencing continuous sea bed subsidence at a rate of 0.15 meter/year resulting in serious operational risk at Lima Flowstation. The subsidence has reduced the air gap between platform decks to sea level up to 3 meters from the original design. The subsidence also has affected a number of wellhead platforms in Lima Area. The immediate solution to mitigate the risk at the wellhead platforms was to relocate equipment from cellar decks to main decks. The focus of this paper is the complex task of synchronized raising of three platforms, interconnecting bridges and flare bridge of Lima Flowstation Complex.

Various studies were undertaken to return Lima Complex back to safe operations. It was concluded that a two stage solution would require the shortest period of Lima production shut down with acceptable levels of project costs. Two stages were required as the consequence of the limited air gap. First stage was to raise the objective structures 1 meter to give enough head room to install the second stage 4-meter raising jacks.

Project Management strategy was the key to successful execution of platform deck raising. It began with contracting strategy, engineering design including interface between Versabar as the designer and provider of the synchronized deck raising system and PT Timas Supplindo as the EPCI Contractor for installation of the system, procurement and fabrication strategy, HSSE plan, quality plan and offshore execution strategy including commissioning and start up. All specifications were determined in the Project Execution Plan and Project Master Schedule.

The project summary was to raise three platforms, interconnecting bridges and flare bridge of Lima Complex at synchronized and controlled speed. It was achieved by controlling the pressure and hydraulic oil flow to each hydraulic jack. Elevation variance of each leg was monitored from the control room by means of string pot and certain levels were selected to stop raising operations for calibration.

Fifty-five days following shutdown the Lima Platform was back online; five days ahead of schedule. The first raising of approximately 1 meter was completed on September 4, 2013 and second raising of additional 3 meters on September 19, returning Lima Flowstation to safe operations and ensuring PHE ONWJ an additional 12-15 years of use.


Pertamina Hulu Energi (PHE) Offshore Northwest Java (ONWJ), a subsidiary of PERTAMINA (National O&G Company) has operated Lima Field since taking over ownership from BP West Java in July 2009. The first Production Sharing Contract (PSC) was originally operated by ARCO from 1971 – 2000.

PHE ONWJ Lima Field

PHE ONWJ Lima Field is situated in Java Sea approximately 45 nautical miles north from Tanjung Priok Port of Jakarta as shown in Figure 1. Lima Field commenced production from 1973. It has 19 wellhead platforms connected by subsea pipelines delivering the products to Lima Flowstation.


To read entire paper (click here)

About Authors 

pmwj25-aug2014-Gurnita-AUTHOR1 GURNITAOto Gurnita, PMP flag-indonesia


Oto Gurnita has been more than 20 years’ experiences in Oil & Gas Projects with specialization in Project Management, inclusive of Engineering, Procurement, Fabrication, Construction/Installation, and QHSSE. Various onshore and offshore projects have been completed (e.g. Fixed Platforms, Floating facility and Subsea Completion). He has worked for various O&G Companies, starting in 1992 with  ARCO Indonesia, BP Indonesia, EMP Kangean Ltd, Star Energy Ltd and currently working for Pertamina Hulu Energi (PHE) ONWJ since 2011.  He was assigned in PHE ONWJ as Project Manager for Lima Subsidence Remediation project completed in 2013 and then UL Field Development project completed in 2014. Currently he is Project Manager for Fire & Gas Upgrade of Bravo Complex project and Oscar Field Development project. He has completed a number of both Offshore and Onshore Projects.  He can be contacted at [email protected] 

pmwj25-aug2014-Gurnita-AUTHOR2 NINDYANTOAsning Suryo Nindyantoflag-indonesia


Asning Suryo Nindyanto graduated from the Institute of Technology Bandung, Indonesia with a degree in Mechanical Engineering in 2001. He started his career in PT. Pillar Pradhana Dwitama as Project Engineer for Single Point Mooring activities. He then joined BP West Java Ltd.and later PT. PERTAMINA Hulu Energi ONWJ in 2009.  He has an extensive experience in various projects: onshore, offshore, fixed platforms and floating facilities.  Asning was assigned as Senior Project Engineer for the Lima Subsidence Remediation Project that was completed in 2013. Currently he is a project Leader for a New Terminal project. [email protected]

Pre-Award Planning Phase: Involvement of Project Manager


Andy Cuthbert

Halliburton Project Management

Houston, TX, USA


The central premise for a project charter stipulates that the project sponsor and steering committee designate a project manager. Simultaneously, and often in advance of the construction of the project charter, a team has been working late into the night compiling the bid in response to the tender; herein, lies a fundamental flaw. Of the seven basic rules that decide the fate of a project, planning is the most critical aspect in defining clear and attainable goals; yet, from the outset, the sequence of events commonly employed does not facilitate this. Generally, the bid has been awarded and the contract signed off before the project manager has been identified. Only when he is in place, is he privy to the document, placing him at a distinct disadvantage, since he has to assemble his team at the same time he is reading, absorbing, and understanding the nuances of the contract document recently thrust into his hands.

Although he is not necessarily an expert in compiling a contract, the project manager has, by the very nature of his position, had close and intimate knowledge of the details contained in contracts he has worked with in the past. This knowledge places him in a unique position of being able to identify where the weak and strong points of the contract are, where money has been left on the table, and where the wording could be tightened up to better specify a particular clause. What he doesn’t know is why the contract was written the way it was. There may be factors that affected the way the contract was constructed; it could be that an omission was made or a particular phrasing was used in error.


Notwithstanding the Scope of Work outlined in the charter, it can be a complex task to define the goals if the contract is lengthy and contains a labyrinth of clauses. Ordering tasks and assigning an estimated time to build the schedule and prepare a timeline for the project are made more onerous by the lack of a clear understanding of the contract. Significant preparatory time is wasted before the execution plan is ready and resources, in terms of personnel and material, are assigned. Ultimately, this is a risk that may lead to a hastily assembled project team who arrive in-country ill-prepared and under-resourced, sometimes after the operational team leads have arrived and have begun their own preparations in isolation, in conflict with good project management principles and in ignorance of the overall contract requirements.


To read entire article (click here)

About the Author

andy cuthbertAndy Cuthbert flag-ukflag-usa


Houston, TX, USA

Having graduated from the University of London with a BSc. (Hons) Geology in 1981, Andy went on to complete an MPhil. in Geology before joining the Oil Industry in 1984. He has 30 years of oilfield experience, 10 years with Schlumberger and 20 years with Halliburton. Amongst the years spent with Halliburton Andy has been involved in projects of ever increasing complexity involving the introduction and coordination of new technology. Time spent as the Project Coordinator for the BG Group in Tunisia in 1995 was succeeded by Project Management in Norway in a production sharing project and on the Talisman Gyda project in 2004. A move to Malaysia in 2006 saw Andy leave project management to take up a regional management position for operations in Southeast Asia, China, the Indian sub-continent and Australasia. A year after moving to Houston in 2009 he resumed his role in Halliburton Project Management and has participated in or is currently involved in projects in the USA, Tanzania, Singapore, India and Iraq. Andy has written or co-authored drilling industry technical papers for the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) on both Directional Drilling and Multilateral Technology and given presentations to the SPE community all over the world. His main hobbies are rugby union; he is an International Rugby Board (IRB) Level II referee, and cycling, especially for charitable causes. He currently lives in Houston with his wife and two children. Andy can be contacted at [email protected].

Halliburton’s corporate website is http://www.halliburton.com/.

To see other works by Andy Cuthbert, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/andy-cuthbert/

Validating Strategies, Linking Projects and Results to Uses and Benefits

PM WORLD Book Review 

pmwj25-aug2014-Gan-IMAGE1 BOOKBook Title:  Validating Strategies, Linking Projects and Results to Uses and Benefits
Author:  Phil Driver
Publisher:  Gower (UK)
List Price:   £70.00
Format:  Hard cover; 273 pages
Publication Date:   2014
ISBN: 978-1-4724-2781-6
Reviewer:      Johnny Gan
Review Date:              July, 2014

Introduction to the Book

A strategy means a carefully devised plan of action to achieve a goal, or the art of developing or carrying out such a plan. Most companies have their business strategies, which provide the big picture that shows how all the individual activities are coordinated to achieve a desired end result. Whatever you do in your business, you have a strategy.

Strategy is so important because it is the source of long term profits; but most organizations continue to struggle with their strategies due to lack of knowledge on how to put together a formal strategic plan or how to hold effective strategy workshops.

Phil Driver, the author tries to bring you an effective strategy development and implementation system in this book.

Snowden and Boone segmented the world of strategic management into four broad categories:

  • Simple (know knows);
  • Complicated (unknown knows);
  • Complex (unknown unknowns);
  • Chaotic (unknowable); 

(A Leaders’ Framework for Decision-making, Harvard Business Review, Nov 2007)

If you want a strategy that can be validated and implemented, then it must be a simple one, since it is physically impossible to implement unknowns. So Phil applied OpenStrategies methodology in this book, which is going to help an organization to develop a simple yet powerful strategy system. Beyond that, the book also guides the organization to validate and implement strategies.

Phil Driver is founder and CEO of Open Strategies Ltd. His background in science and engineering management led to his involvement in large-scale industry-sector strategies.

Overview of Book’s Structure 

This book uses a system called Open Strategies to diagnose traditional strategy statements and convincingly demonstrate their effectiveness or ineffectiveness. It then shows how to create and validate effective strategies, especially in large-scale multi-stakeholder environments.

The whole book includes 3 parts:


To read entire Book Review (click here)

About the Reviewer

johnny ganJohnny Gan, PMPflag-china

Texas, USA 

Johnny Gan had many years of software R&D experience at HRsmart.com (http://www.hrsmart.com/), and was working as consultant at Yoh (http://www.yoh.com/) Company, which helped industry leading companies get superior value from their investments. Mr. Gan received his MS degree from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, USA, and is also certified by the Project Management Institute as a Project Management Professional (PMP®).  He has been an active member of PMI for several years. Johnny can be contacted at [email protected].

To view other works by Johnny Gan, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/johnny-gan/.

Editor’s note:  This book review was the result of cooperation between the publisher, PM World and the Dallas Chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI Dallas Chapter – www.pmidallas.org). Authors and publishers provide books to PM World; books are delivered to the PMI Dallas Chapter, where they are offered free to PMI members to review; book reviews are published in the PM World Journal and PM World Library.  PMI members can keep the books as well as receive PDUs for PMP recertification when their book reviews are published.  PMI Dallas Chapter members are generally mid-career professionals, the audience for most project management books.  If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact [email protected].

Change Communication: More than You-Rah-Rah


Marge Combe 

Wisconsin, USA

Change communication – a topic that makes confident leaders into puddles of uncertainty.  But not Aaron.  A financial services company was installing new trading software.  It would significantly change their work processes, standardize many currently autonomous decisions, and result in some layoffs.  Aaron, the CEO, had worked tirelessly with his staff to assure a credible communication plan was crafted, emphasizing why the change was needed: a vision for growing the company and the software easing that growth, along with much better regulatory compliance tracking.  Aaron had not shied away from the question of layoffs in the communication plan.

The plan carefully laid out the numbers, broad timing, how people would be treated, and the desire to absorb as many as possible into other positions into the company.  Finally, the communication plan covered an overall plan for the implementation of the new software, including training.  Aaron planned to talk about the software implementation at each of the company’s bi-monthly all-employee meetings.  He felt pretty good about the company’s communication plan.

Aaron did an above-average job in planning for change communications.  Many leaders’ communication plans around change are little more than cheerleading – “You’re going to love this!”, when they know everyone is going to hate it for a while.  But Aaron might have done even better by thinking about communication along four concurrent paths.


To read entire article (click here)

About the Author

marge-combeMarge Combeflag-usa 

Wisconsin, USA

Marge Combe is a coach/consultant with Vernal Management Consultants, LLC (VMC), a firm specializing in the professional development and effective business practices of leaders and leadership teams (www.vernalmgmt.com).  VMC currently coaches a number of leaders and business owners in the project management profession, in North America, Europe, the Middle East, the Pacific Rim, and South America.  Marge joined VMC in 2008 after more than 35 years in portfolio management, strategic planning and large-scale change management for Northwestern Mutual and Whirlpool Corporation.   She has leveraged that experience and a passion for coaching and mentoring into a consulting and leadership coaching role with special focus on her roots: change management, strategic planning, and project management.  Marge is a former PMI board director and Chair of the Strategic Planning and Program Alignment Committee.  She was instrumental in shaping and leading a Fortune 500 Project Management Benchmarking Forum.  She is certified in coaching through Lominger International and in emotional intelligence through the Institute for Health and Human Potential.  She received the 2007 Woman of Influence Award for mentoring, and the 2010 Leadership Excellence Award from Marquette University.  Marge can be contacted at [email protected].

Assessing Contractor Schedules in Oman against the GAO’s Scheduling Best Practice Guide


By Hassan Al Barrami



Delay in construction projects due to scheduling is considered one of the most common problems causing a mass of negative effects on the project and its participating parties.  The purpose of this paper is to assess contractor schedules in Oman against the GAO’s Scheduling Best Practices and to find out the 20% causes of 80% of scheduling problems according to Pareto Chart. In this paper 9 schedules from local contractor analyzed and compared to the 10 best practices listed in GAO Schedule Assessment Guide. Pareto Chart technique applied and found out that schedules have bad weakness in assigning resources to all activities. List of recommendations given according to GAO’s Scheduling Best Practices to come over this problem.

Keywords: scheduling, project management, project delays, assigning resources to activities, projects scheduling in Oman.


Infrastructural projects are considered crucial in developing countries where also a huge number of personal buildings are constructed every year. In Oman the cement demand is going to increase at annual rate of 6 per cent for the next four years as stated in Times of Oman magazine and this to cover mega infrastructure projects and tourism ventures. it is clear that construction projects are going to increase which means very good opportunities are coming to light for entrepreneurs . Since there will be many companies which are going to compete to win the contracts it is vital for those companies to be very competitive in the market. The clients always prefer the contractor who have a very good experience in constructions and have good reputation in finishing projects on time, within budget and as per the required quality.

Unfortunately most of building construction projects are not finishing on time, beside that the budget is exceeded most of the time. Many studies had been made to find out the reasons for delay and the reasons for exceeding the budget in construction projects. Delay of projects could be due to shortage of material on site or market, equipment failure or break down. Workers skills also are playing role in projects duration. There are another reasons for projects delay like financing reasons where the contractor facing difficulties to proceed the projects as he could not pay his expenses. Sometimes the client changing his scope which leads to increase in overall cost and time and sometimes the environment is the basis for the delay like bad whether condition.

Many projects are getting delay due to government actions such as waiting for permits and approvals. Poor planning and scheduling of the construction projects may also lead to bad results in project completion time and budget. In this paper building projects schedule will be studied and compared to the best practices listed in GAO Schedule Assessment Guide.  The reason why this topic had been selected is that schedule provides a road map for systematic project execution and it is power full tool to major progress, resolve potential problems in advance and it helps to eliminate causes of delay and extra expenses. Scheduling is playing considerable role to control projects effectively.

According to GAO Schedule Assessment Guide, “four characteristics should be considered for high-quality and reliable schedule”:


To read entire paper (click here)

About the Author

pmwj25-aug2014-Al-Barrami-AUTHORHassan Al-barrami flag-salalah

Salalah, Sultanate of Oman

Hassan Al-barrami is a senior maintenance planning engineer working in Salalah Methanol Company since December 2008.  He worked in operation department before shifting to maintenance (Planning and Project section) and  has been through all phases of Salalah Methanol Plant project (construction, pre commissioning and commissioning).  He has very good experience in SAP (PM and MM modules), Planning and scheduling plant turnaround and shutdowns using scheduling software (primavera and MS Project). He got his degree in industrial engineering from Sultan Qaboos University (SQU). He lives in Salalah and can be contacted at [email protected] or [email protected] .

In search of Eureka: How deadlines and governance arrangements affect the enactment of roles within major collaborative research programmes


Alistair Marsden

Southampton, UK


This dissertation presents an exploratory case study of how participants in a technology project from two organisations within a major collaborative research programme make sense of trust-control dynamics and cultural-governance relationships and how this affects the enactment of roles. Using grounded theory and Freytag’s plot pyramid to help make sense of the case study it argues that deadlines can undermine trust and that governance mechanisms are strongly influenced by epistemic and organisational cultural factors that further mitigate against building trust between the participants. Mistrust causes the enactment of transactional roles within a rigid control environment contradicting the less rigid control environment specified within the formal contract. These enacted roles, in turn, further contribute to mistrust and the participants find themselves trapped in a vicious circle. The implications for research and practice are discussed and further research questions are proposed.


This dissertation seeks to answer the question ‘how do deadlines and governance mechanisms affect the enactment of roles within major collaborative research programmes?’ This is an important inquiry because it builds on existing research that identifies the lack of knowledge of social complexity as a significant cause of major programme failure (Hodgson and Cicmil, 2003; Williams, 2005). It takes a fresh approach to this knowledge gap, using case study research within a major collaborative research programme whose sole declared intention is the development of knowledge. This is particularly interesting because the case study focuses on the collaborative development of knowledge within deadlines, thus facilitating an investigation of the trust-control dynamics and the cultural-governance that underpin social complexity.

The importance of the research question is further emphasised by two concurrent recent phenomena: the proliferation in the late twentieth century of both major programmes used to address the various complex challenges faced by society (Flyvbjerg et al., 2003) and ‘Big Science’ facilities that bear witness to the emergence of the organisation, rather than the individual, as the driver of science (Knorr-Cetina, 1999; Ziman, 1994). The annual costs of the CERN research establishments of circa $1 billion gives an indication of the scale of these types of facilities (CERN, 2011). Whilst the rise in major collaborative research programmes makes them a key focus for organizational theorists (Knorr-Cetina, 1999; Latour and Woolgar, 1986; Price, 1986), little consideration has been given to the influence of deadlines on the enactment of research roles.

To explore this question, the dissertation investigates the perspectives of participants from two organisations working together on a project to develop new technology within a major High Energy Physics (HEP) research programme. This is investigated through a grounded theory analysis of data collected from interviews, meeting observations, field observations and secondary data sources. The findings and discussion are presented using Freytag’s plot pyramid (Freytag and MacEwan, 1900). This provides insights into how participants understand and enact their roles in the context of both time-constrained research and the governance mechanisms used to align goals, mediate conflict and build trust.


To read entire paper (click here)

Editor’s note: This paper was prepared for the MSc. Major Programme Management course at Said Business School, University of Oxford, UK.  The course is led on the academic side by Professor Bent Flyvbjerg.  Dr. Eamonn Molloy was dissertation supervisor. The author graduated in 2014.

About the Author

pmwj25-aug2014-Marsden-AUTHOR IMAGEAlistair Marsdenflag-uk

Southampton, UK

Alistair Marsden is a chartered accountant and qualified programme manager with over twenty years of experience leading various large-scale organisational change programmes within medical devices, fast moving consumer goods and logistics organisations.  He graduated in Economics from the University of York and has an MSc in Major Programme Management from Said Business School, University of Oxford where he graduated with a distinction and received the Dean’s Award for Best Overall Student. His research has explored how behaviours are influenced by deadlines and cultural-governance dynamics, especially within the context of projects that seek to develop the knowledge needed to solve socially complex challenges.  Future research interests include accounting for benefits arising from research and the cultural identity of the accountancy profession especially in the context of research. He is currently the Assistant Director of Finance at the University of Southampton.  Alistair can be contacted at [email protected]

Secrets to Mastering the WBS in Real World Projects

PM WORLD Book Review 

pmwj25-aug2014-Freeland-IMAGE1 BOOKBook Title:  Secrets to Mastering the WBS in Real World Projects
Author:  Liliana Buchtik
Publisher:  Project Management Institute
List Price:   US$ 39.95
Format:  soft cover; 207 pages
Publication Date:   2013
ISBN: 978-1-62825-033-6
Reviewer:      Newton Freeland
Review Date:              March 2014

Introduction to the Book

Mastering the Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) in Real World Projects is an excellent presentation of theory as well as practical application. The author illustrates key concepts through good and bad examples.

The book includes key definitions, options for structuring the WBS, various software applications for WBS development and WBS integration with other tools such as project schedule and costs.

Key concepts developed by the author include:

  • WBS defines scope
  • Tasks versus Deliverables
  • The top 20 benefits of using a WBS

Overview of Book’s Structure

The book is organized to benefit both a new Project Manager who has not considered the value of using a WBS as well as the seasoned project manager who needs to be exposed to new ideas about the WBS development and applications.

Key topics include defining the WBS, clearing up confusions about the WBS, understanding and mastering its use, software tool discussion, integration with other processes, etc.

Highlights: What’s New in this Book

The concept of defining scope with the WBS was not new but the development was very profound. That supported what amounts to a major change since 1987 by redefining the WBS to address deliverables instead of tasks. The author reports that both deliverables and tasks are appropriate in the project schedule but only deliverables are addressed in the WBS.


To read entire Book Review (click here)

About the Reviewer

pmwj25-aug2014-Freeland-IMAGE2 REVIEWERButch Freelandflag-usa

North Texas, USA

Newton (Butch) Freeland’s background includes US Naval Flight Officer – E-2C operations and T&E, Airborne systems test, systems engineering, business development, international border security and Project management for the past 28 years. Systems have included UAV, E- 2C, SATCOM, Austrailian P-3 weapons upgrade, SeaVue radar, Ukraine border security, and DEA aircraft sensor and communications modifications.

Editor’s note:  This book review was the result of cooperation between the publisher, PM World and the Dallas Chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI Dallas Chapter – www.pmidallas.org). Authors and publishers provide books to PM World; books are delivered to the PMI Dallas Chapter, where they are offered free to PMI members to review; book reviews are published in the PM World Journal and PM World Library.  PMI members can keep the books as well as receive PDUs for PMP recertification when their book reviews are published.  PMI Dallas Chapter members are generally mid-career professionals, the audience for most project management books.  If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact [email protected].

Maximizing Project Success Through Human Performance

PM WORLD Book Review 

pmwj25-aug2014-Lee-IMAGE1 BOOKBook Title:  Maximizing Project Success Through Human Performance
Author:  Bernardo Tirado, PMP®
Publisher:  Management Concepts, Inc
List Price:   US$37.91         Available in kindle $26.40
Format:  soft cover; 172 pages
Publication Date:   September 2013
ISBN: 978-1-56726-420-3   ASIN: B00GK583ZS
Reviewer:      Elaine F Lee, PMP®
Review Date:              July, 2014

Introduction to the Book

Maximizing Project Success Through Human Performance is an interactive publication that reminds the reader of techniques they already know and also gives them fresh approaches to leading teams.  As project managers, we can utilize this book to enhance our skills in communication with team members and develop the culture of a project management team.  The author, Bernardo Tirado, PMP® is the CEO of a human performance consulting company (www.theprojectbox.us).  The knowledge in the book is based on teaching the Project Management Human Performance (PmHP) model and includes research from Kinestics which is the study of nonverbal communications.

The book is a step-by-step approach that allows personal introspection, discusses communication skills and how to develop a cohesive team.  One of the interesting topics is evaluating risk strategies based on information learned in SWOT analysis of a team and organization climate.  There is a detailed section on body language, vocal tones, and group dynamics.

Overview of Book’s Structure

The book has four parts:  Introduction to Business Psychology, Team: unconscious and conscious behaviors that can compromise project success, Organization: behaviors that can jeopardize your project and a case study.  Mr. Tirado develops his chapters by providing facts and research on the topics, utilizing examples to apply the tools and summarizing each with the conclusion.  There is an index at the end of the book to provide easy navigation.  The flow of the book made it easy to read.  However, plan for utilizing it as a workbook to review situations you are currently in or approaching to use the book to the best advantage.

Highlights: What’s New in this Book?

Maximizing Project Success Through Human Performance navigates the reader through points they may be familiar with such as the Myer-Briggs test, creating a brand with a self-introduction, and stages for group dynamics. Part II of the book is titled Team: Unconscious and Conscious Behaviors That Can Compromise Project Success has many insights.  In Chapter 5, Profiling People at Work, Mr. Tirado discusses a section called “Cues For Stress”.  These include tone or pitch changes, wrong tense, the use of word ‘no’ being drawn out, and other examples.  I found this depth of information useful in forming a better understanding of indicators for team member’s stress.


To read entire Book Review (click here)

About the Reviewer

pmwj25-aug2014-Lee-IMAGE2 REVIEWERElaine Lee, PMP®flag-usa

North Texas, USA 

Elaine Lee, PMP® is a professional in the telecommunications industry with a BBA in Management from Texas Woman’s University and graduate work from the University of Dallas.  Elaine is a past president for the Dallas Trinity Rotary club.  Elaine is active in Toastmasters International where she has achieved the education levels of Advanced Communicator Silver (ACS) and Advanced Leader Bronze (ALB).  Elaine is a member of PMI Dallas Chapter.


To view other works by Elaine Lee, visit her author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/elaine-lee-pmp/. 

Editor’s note:  This book review was the result of cooperation between the publisher, PM World and the Dallas Chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI Dallas Chapter – www.pmidallas.org). Authors and publishers provide books to PM World; books are delivered to the PMI Dallas Chapter, where they are offered free to PMI members to review; book reviews are published in the PM World Journal and PM World Library.  PMI members can keep the books as well as receive PDUs for PMP recertification when their book reviews are published.  PMI Dallas Chapter members are generally mid-career professionals, the audience for most project management books.  If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact [email protected].

A Brief History of Scheduling – Back to the Future


By Patrick Weaver, FAICD, FCIOB, PMP

Director, Mosaic Project Services Pty Ltd

Melbourne, Australia


The science of ‘scheduling’ as defined by Critical Path Analysis (CPA) celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 2007.  In 1956/57 Kelly and Walker started developing the algorithms that became the ‘Activity-on-Arrow’ or ADM scheduling methodology for DuPont. The program they developed was trialled on plant shutdowns in 1957 and their first paper on critical path scheduling was published in March 1959.  The PERT system was developed at around the same time but lagged CPM by 6 to 12 months (although the term ‘critical path’ was invented by the PERT team). Later the Precedence (PDM) methodology was developed by Dr. John Fondahl; his seminal paper was published in 1961 describing PDM as a ‘non-computer’ alternative to CPM.  Arguably, the evolution of modern project management is a direct consequence of the need to make effective use of the data generated by the schedulers in an attempt to manage and control the critical path.

The evolution of CPM scheduling closely tracked the development of computers.  The initial systems were complex mainframe behemoths, typically taking a new scheduler many months to learn to use.  These systems migrated to the ‘mini computers’ of the 1970s and 80s but remained expensive, encouraging the widespread use of manual scheduling techniques, with only the larger (or more sophisticated) organisations being able to afford a central scheduling office and the supporting computer systems.

The advent of the ‘micro computer’ (ie, personal computer, or PC) changed scheduling for ever. The evolution of PC based scheduling move project controls from an environment where a skilled cadre of schedulers operating expensive systems made sure the scheduling was ‘right’ (and the organisation ‘owned’ the data) to a situation where anyone could learn to drive a scheduling software package, schedules became ‘islands of data’ sitting on peoples’ desktops and the overall quality of scheduling plummeted.

Current trends back to ‘Enterprise’ systems supported by PMOs seem to be redressing the balance and offering the best of both worlds.  From the technology perspective, information is managed centrally, but is easily available on anyone’s desktop via web enabled and networked systems.  From the skills perspective PMOs are re-developing career paths for schedulers and supporting the development of scheduling standards within organisations.

This paper tracks the development of scheduling (with a particular focus on Micro Planner and Primavera) and looks at the way the evolving technology has changed the way projects are scheduled and managed.


To read entire article, including footnotes and references (click here)

Second Editions are previously published papers that have continued relevance in today’s project management world, or which were originally published in conference proceedings or in a language other than English.  Original publication acknowledged; authors retain copyright.  This paper was originally presented at the myPrimavera Conference, Canberra, Australia, April 2006.  It has been since updated and posted on the Mosaic website at www.mosaicprojects.com.au. It is republished here with permission of the author.

About the Author

patrick weaverPatrick Weaverflag-australia       

Melbourne, Australia

Patrick Weaver, PMP, PMI-SP, FAICD, FCIOB, is the Managing Director of Mosaic Project Services Pty Ltd, an Australian project management consultancy specialising in project control systems and a PMI Registered Education Provider.  Patrick is also the business manager of Stakeholder Management Pty Ltd. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Building, Australasia (FCIOB) and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (FAICD). He is a member of the PMI College of Scheduling, and the PMI Melbourne Chapter (Australia), as well a full member of AIPM, APM (UK) and the College of Performance Management.  Patrick has over 35 years experience in Project Management.  His career was initially focused on the planning and managing of construction, engineering and infrastructure projects in the UK and Australia. The last 25 years has seen his businesses and experience expand to include the successful delivery of project scheduling services and PMOs in a range of government, ICT and business environments; with a strong focus on project management training.  His consultancy work encompasses: developing and advising on project schedules, developing and presenting PM training courses, managing the development of internal project control systems for client organisations, and assisting with dispute resolution and claims management.  He is a qualified Arbitrator.  In the last few years, Patrick has sought to ‘give back’ to the industry he has participated in since leaving college through contributions to the development of the project management profession.  In addition to his committee roles he has presented papers at a wide range of project management conferences in the USA, Europe, Asia and Australia, has an on-going role with the PMOZ conference in Australia and is part of the Australian delegation to ISO TC258.  Patrick can be contacted at [email protected] or at www.mosaicprojects.com.au.

To see other works published in the PM World Journal by Patrick Weaver, visit his author showcase at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/patrick-weaver/

The Gigaprogram Challenge


By Bob Prieto

Princeton, NJ, USA

This issue of PM World Journal challenges writers and readers to consider the planning and management differences between megaprojects and more conventionally sized projects. In this paper I will focus on a subset of these megaprojects which I will refer to as gigaprojects, or more appropriately as “gigaprograms”, and encompassing projects with constructed values in excess of $10 billion. I have chosen this subset of projects since I believe that many of the particular challenges we see at this scale and level of complexity exist more broadly in megaprojects but are perhaps not as easily seen.

Readers of PM World Journal and its predecessor publication will recognize that this is a subject that I have written extensively on including several books on this subject area. This paper will focus on a few of the planning and management differences that experience suggests are most significant in influencing project outcomes at this scale.

Gigaprograms vs. Traditional Projects 

There is a tendency to think of the essential difference between megaprojects and more traditional sized projects as one of scale. If only it was that simple. A better analogy, and something that we see more clearly in the world of gigaprograms, is that this scaling up in size has the concomitant effect of “unfolding” unseen dimensions that were likely always there but whose effects were not readily noticeable.

These unseen dimensions:

  • create new regions of “white space”, that if not aggressively managed, serve as nesting and breeding grounds for new, more systemic type risks
  • expose a subtle “coupling” across the gigaprogram that at smaller scales was not as significant; this “coupling” is not only direct coupling but importantly indirect coupling realized through “coupled constraints” or “white space” couplings that previously were not significant
  • drive us to a level of complexity where the scaling of activities is dramatically outweighed by the scaling of the possible network combinations and effects that are created.
  • expose the fragility of many of our assumptions, as longer project development and execution periods that are inherent characteristics of commitment of growing levels of capital, demonstrate that they are far from static and instead experience “assumption migration”
  • highlight management dimensions that are less significant on smaller scale projects such as those associated with:

o   increased strategic importance (achievement of strategic business objectives or SBOs with their outcomes focus) vs. the output focus of delivering more traditional projects and the emergence of a changed governance regime

o   owner, not just project, readiness given the increased level of owner organizational involvement and oversight that gigaprograms attract

o   increased importance of multi-party contractual relationships both in the various execution teams and potentially even in the project ownership structure

  • expose the need to think about “capital efficiency” in a fuller way than is traditionally experienced on smaller projects where CAPEX or construction schedule usually suffice as project optimization points.

Essential Differences 

Let me turn now to some of the essential differences I see and why they are important and why as owners and deliverers of the large scale projects we have much to do… 


To read entire paper, with footnotes and references (click here)

About the Author

bob prietoBob Prietoflag-usa

Senior Vice President


Princeton, NJ, USA

Bob Prieto is a senior vice president of Fluor, one of the largest, publicly traded engineering and construction companies in the world. He focuses on the development and delivery of large, complex projects worldwide. Bob consults with owners of large engineering & construction capital construction programs across all market sectors in the development of programmatic delivery strategies encompassing planning, engineering, procurement, construction and financing. He is author of “Strategic Program Management”, “The Giga Factor: Program Management in the Engineering and Construction Industry” and “Application of Life Cycle Analysis in the Capital Assets Industry” published by the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA) and “Topics in Strategic Program Management” as well as over 500 other papers and presentations.

Bob is a member of the ASCE Industry Leaders Council, National Academy of Construction and a Fellow of the Construction Management Association of America. Bob served until 2006 as one of three U.S. presidential appointees to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Business Advisory Council (ABAC), working with U.S. and Asia-Pacific business leaders to shape the framework for trade and economic growth and had previously served as both as Chairman of the Engineering and Construction Governors of the World Economic Forum and co-chair of the infrastructure task force formed after September 11th by the New York City Chamber of Commerce.  Previously, he served as Chairman at Parsons Brinckerhoff (PB), one of the world’s leading engineering companies.  Bob Prieto can be contacted at [email protected].

Application of Project Management in Ministerial Security Development


Carol Axten

International Security Assistance Force – Afghanistan



After the September 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the U.S. Defense focus turned to fighting terrorism throughout the world.  The U.S. entered into a conflict with Afghanistan to remove the Taliban government which supported Osama Bin Laden and insurgent training camps.  In 2003, the U.S. expanded the “Global War on Terror” to include Iraq and the removal of Saddam Hussein and purge the country of Al Qaeda insurgents.  In both situations, government functions were devastated and needed to be rebuilt using democracy as a framework.  This paper will discuss applying a strategic to tactical, multi-dimensional approach to project management  to a Ministerial Security Development mission laying a foundational framework with developmental processes.  Although this paper focuses on the Ministry of Defense (MoD), the same approach applies to other Security Ministries such as Ministry of Interior and National Department of Security. This paper does not cover the “fight” element of contingency operations. The project management approach utilizes the business models adopted by the Pentagon to establish organization operations.

There are numerous challenges to establishing this foundation.  Whether a U.S. or NATO mission, short term objectives accomplished through constant turnover of military and civilian personnel causes fragmentation of effort.  Most assignments are one year requiring a complete turnover of personnel every summer; many are as short as 5-6 months.

The U.S’s ability to establish effective MoD organizations in these regions is essential to a decreasing Department of Defense (DoD) budget particularly with Sequestration.  Self-sufficiency of the MoD means less manpower by the Coalition Security Assistance Force (CSAF).  The lessons of Iraq and Afghanistan have shown that establishing Ministerial Security functional capability, such as Human Resource Management, Budgeting, Contracting, Logistics, and Institutional Training cannot be approached as a campaign plan.  Instead, it should be more closely aligned with project management and the ability to define objectives, determine tasks, create performance measures, and evaluate the nation’s ability to operate independently of Coalition support.  A project management approach provides the tools for business operations planning typical of the Pentagon and allows for identifying and managing risks in a very uncertain environment.


To read entire paper (click here)

Editor’s note:  Second Editions are previously published papers that have continued relevance in today’s project management world, or which were originally published in conference proceedings or in a language other than English.  Original publication acknowledged; authors retain copyright.  This paper was originally presented at the 1st Annual University of Maryland Project Management Symposium in College Park, Maryland, USA and included in the conference Proceedings in June 2014.  It is republished here with permission of the author and the Project Management Center for Excellence at the University of Maryland.

About the Author

pmwj25-aug2014-Axten-AUTHOR IMAGECarol Axtenflag-usa


Carol Axten was the Senior Advisor to the Afghan Assistant Ministry of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics in 2012-2014. She was deployed to Iraq as the Senior Advisor for Acquisition to the Iraqi Ministry of Defense in 2010-2011.    Ms Axten has 30 years with the Naval Air System Command and has served in several positions in both the engineering and program management fields for major weapon system development.  She spent 18 months as a Policy Analyst in the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Air Programs).  As part of the Capitol Hill Fellowship Program, Ms. Axten served as the Military Legislative Assistant to Congressman Patrick Kennedy, a then member of the House Armed Services Committee.  She provided guidance to the Congressman dealing with defense, intelligence, budget committee, government reform and oversight, and women’s issue and represented the Congressman in meetings with senior members of the Military Services, as well as, Corporate Executives and local Government officials.

Ms. Axten is a PhD Candidate in Civil Engineering with a major in Project Management from the University of Maryland. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering from Temple University, Philadelphia, PA and several Masters degrees: Master of Science degree in National Resource Strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces (ICAF); Master of Engineering from Pennsylvania State University, Malvern, PA; Master of Art in International Relations from Salve Regina University, Newport, RI; and a Master of Science in Business Administration from Temple University, Philadelphia, PA.  While at ICAF, she completed the courses Reconstruction and Nation Building, Middle East Studies, and International Comparative Defense Industries. Her area of focus in International Relations was on Russia and Eastern European Politics.

Ms. Axten is a graduate of the College of Naval Command and Staff of the Naval War College and has received a Master Certificate in Legislative Studies from Georgetown University and a Master Certificate in Contract Management from George Washington University.  She is a member of the DOD Acquisition Professional Community; graduate of the NAVAIR Senior Management Development Program, Executive Potential Program; and the Defense Leadership & Management Program.   Her recognition and awards include Joint Meritorious Unit Award for mission in Afghanistan (June 2013), Joint Civilian Service Commendation Award (May 2011), Global War on Terror Award (April 2011), NAWCAD Innovation Award for Program Management (2005), Daniel S. McCauley Professional Achievement (1994), and semi-finalist in the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Essay Contest (2009). She has published several papers on mathematical modeling of system operation.  Carol can be contacted at [email protected].

Trust in Virtual Teams

PM WORLD Book Review

pmwj25-aug2014-Suresh-IMAGE1 BOOKBook Title: Trust in Virtual Teams
Author: Thomas P. Wise
Publisher: Gower Publishing Limited
List Price: US$94.46
Format:  Hard cover; 167 pages
Publication Date: May 2013
ISBN: 9781409453611
Reviewer: Shailaja Suresh
Review Date:            July, 2014

Introduction to the Book

The book captivates the reader’s attention by its title and theme. It speaks about the most frequently faced puzzle by an IT project manager these days – managing virtual teams. Virtual teams are a trend now in IT and would soon become the mode of operation in most software companies.

The author points out that the essence of virtual teams is trust. He discusses the different elements of virtuality that the project manager should be aware of in order to strategically use them to bring up high performance project teams. The author being a quality expert, emphasizes the importance of quality assurance in companies that rely upon virtual teams.

Overview of Book’s Structure

The book has been divided in 3 parts:

1)    Understanding and building trust – This speaks about synergizing the 3 types of trust in a virtual environment to build the team’s resiliency:

a) Personality based trust

b) Cognitive based trust

c) Institutional based trust

2)    Virtual team working – Virtual teams do not go through the usual stages of team maturity like forming, norming and storming. Therefore, this section talks about the importance of elements of virtuality like geographic proximity, electronically mediated communication, and a perception of homogeneity within the team which when had a grip on, could help build high performance teams.

3)    Quality assurance, trust and the virtual team – This section focusses on describing the role of quality assurance and how the differences in quality practices could affect trust and team’s performance in a virtual world.

Though some of the chapter contents are verbose, the organization of the book into three such different sections, help the reader assimilate the points discussed very well.


To read entire Book Review (click here)

About the Reviewer

pmwj23-jun2014-Suresh-IMAGE2 REVIEWERShailaja Sureshflag-usa-india

Chennai, India

Dallas, Texas

Shailaja Suresh did her B.E and B.Tech (dual engineering degree) from College of Engineering, Guindy, Chennai, India. She is a  C-PGDBA graduate from Symbiosis, Pune, India. She is a PMI certified Project Management Professional and a Scrum Master who has a vast experience and exposure in Agile related software methodologies.  She believes in continuous learning and shows great enthusiasm to learn new technologies. She loves reading, writing, solving puzzles, collecting archaeological artifacts. Anything out of the ordinary interests her and kindles her curiosity. She enjoys interacting with people on space and management related topics.  Email: [email protected]  

Editor’s note:  This book review was the result of cooperation between the publisher, PM World and the Dallas Chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI Dallas Chapter – www.pmidallas.org). Authors and publishers provide books to PM World; books are delivered to the PMI Dallas Chapter, where they are offered free to PMI members to review; book reviews are published in the PM World Journal and PM World Library.  PMI members can keep the books as well as receive PDUs for PMP recertification when their book reviews are published.  PMI Dallas Chapter members are generally mid-career professionals, the audience for most project management books.  If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact [email protected].

Prototyping a project management application for collaborative research environment in the academia world


By C.M.M.,Chin and B.W.Chung

Department of Mechanical, Materials & Manufacturing Engineering,

University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus




In recent years, project works are significantly growing in numerous sectors and industries. However, a project requires execution to achieve an organisation’s strategic plan to displays unique service, product or result (PMI, 2000). Project management is a body of knowledge concerning with principles, techniques and tools to conduct planning, control, monitoring and review of projects (PMI, 2000). As such it offers organisations to be efficient, effective and competitive in a sophisticated and unpredictable environment (Ika, 2009). Nevertheless, methodology of project management is persistently questioned and criticised in project work (Smyth and Morris, 2007; Smyth, 2009; Meyer et.al., 2002) especially in the academia-industry alliances where project management are rarely well implemented (Nielsen et.al., 2013). The reason project management in managing academia-industry alliances fail is due to inconsistency between parties. Firstly, industry blatantly believes they can run research projects like lean based production companies (Nielsen et.al., 2013). Besides that, most project managers fail to identify the different types of uncertainty that requires a different management approach (Meyer et.al., 2002) and due to inflexibility in their approaches which contradicts with the purpose of project management. According to Kwak and Aanbari (2008), project management is the accepted way of getting work done in a flexible, outsourced and projectized environment.

Although there are published texts on project management and available courses, not many researchers undergo project management training (Payne et.al., 2011). For instance, Go8 Future Research Leaders Program in Australia advocates training to researchers from eight national universities for project management. However, academic researchers tend to outweigh technical skills more than management skills which subsequently resulted in poor project management.The potential benefits alliances between academic and industry are colossal for both parties. Both parties gain technology and expertise exchange, enhanced reputation and skill development. Industry specifically benefits from enrichment of corporate value and culture, technology testing and development, new perspectives and approaches, recruitment and retention. On the other hand, university aims for potential research funding for application and testing of theory (Nielsen et.al., 2013).

Project in research development are unique and challenging in contrast to other type of projects. The first challenge in research development is the duration of project terms. The average project term may extend to six years because the topic of research is novel and requires trial and error approaches. Thus, project manager is exposed to less number of projects. Besides that, projects vary greatly relevant to the topic of research. Past experiences maybe irrelevant on occasions. Projects in research were subjected to higher risk because the chance of success was lower. As a result, project managers fail more than succeed in such projects (Uchihira, 2012). The study therefore aimed to provide a potent method to increase productivity and efficiency in academic-industry research development projects. Besides that, it also aims to minimise issues of both parties by supporting the project manager in monitoring, running and improving the success rate of the project’s managerial aspect. Specific templates and tools were also designed and standardised to suit various projects in the research development.

Finally, the primary objective is to develop a project management methodology application to manage academic-industry collaborative research planning work. There were various aspects to consider in designing the system which were; (1) problems and challenges faced by the academic-industry research team, (2) the methodology of project management application (PMA) in the market and (3) the suitable design and structure of the system that would fit to the research environment. Firstly, data was collected from literatures to determine the situational relationship between academic and industry. How did they cope and interact to make a project success? What are their challenges and ways to improve productivity of their research development? Predicaments were taken into account and measurements are outlined.


To read entire paper (click here)

About the Authors

pmwj25-aug2014-Chin-AUTHOR1 CHINDr Christina Chinflag-malaysia

University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus


Dr Christina Chin is an Assistant Professor with the University of Nottingham, Malaysia Campus in the Department of Mechanical, Materials & Manufacturing Engineering. She holds an MSc in Computer Based Info Syst., D.B.A. and PhD in Project Management. Her main interest remains with project management with more emphasis on designing a methodology for use to managing complex, yet dynamic collaborative research between university academicians and industry partners which she is working on, publishing it to aid institutional in research environment. In addition, she is also looking at technological innovation in knowledge intensive industries. Apart from this area of interest, she is also conducting research in the area of renewable energy policies management & implementation, with the adoption of project management concepts & techniques, pollution management for a river basin conservation programme for Malaysia and lean concepts in the manufacturing industries. Being in academia and industry for more than ten years, Dr Chin had published and presented in many local and international conferences and contributed to the body of knowledge; supervised a number of undergraduates and postgraduates (MSc and PhDs). She is also very active as a reviewer for the Engineering Management Research Journal, International Journal of Innovative Technology and Research Science, Journal of Mechanics &Industry Research, Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis and the Open journal of Social Science Research. Dr Chin is contactable at [email protected]

pmwj25-aug2014-Chin-AUTHOR2-CHUNGBoon Wue Chungflag-malaysia

University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus


Boon Wue Chung is a graduate in BEng (Hons) in Mechanical, Materials & Manufacturing Engineering from the University of Nottingham. He had completed a pilot version of the system as his final year project and will further enhance the prototype to be applied in the Entrepreneurship Society at the university. He is contactable at [email protected]

Series on Categorizing Projects and Programs: Project Categories


By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia


This is the first of a series of four working/discussion papers on categorizing projects and programs. The context of these papers is overall categorizations as they have appeared in the literature. These currently vary widely, and this series is concerned with exploring possibilities for bringing them closer together. The aim is to stimulate discussion and to encourage feedback, which might hopefully lead to the development of more widely acceptable and accepted categorizations.

This first paper focuses on project categorizations, most of which are found to be a mixture of industrial/ social sectors (Application Sectors) in which projects are undertaken (e.g. aerospace, defence), and types of projects (Project Types) which are undertaken in many, if not most, of these Application Sectors (e.g. IT, R&D). The components of a recent project categorization are re-allocated into these two categories, and presented as a matrix which illustrates the intersections between Project Types and the various Application Sectors in which they are undertaken. The paper goes on to discuss the five key Project Types which have emerged so far.


Many different generalized categorizations of projects in particular have appeared over the past twenty-five years, yet we still do not have a widely accepted categorization. I have had an interest in this since 1989 when I became Chair of PMI’s Standards Committee, during which time we discussed possibilities of developing domain-specific materials in relation to the PMBOK (but did not pursue these at the time). Other early discussions on project categorizations that I came across included Allen 1991, Youker 1992 and Turner 1993.

However, other interests overtook this particular one, and I did not return to this topic until 2009, when I made an initial attempt to categorize programs (Stretton 2009b). I have been further stimulated to return to the subject due to articles by Pells 2011 and Archibald & Prado 2014, whose contributions will be discussed in more detail later.

It should be pointed out that the categorizations of projects in these papers are all concerned with stand-alone projects (rather than component projects of programs). In the context of broad categorizations they are on much the same footing as programs. Hence the frequent use of the descriptor programs/projects later.

Crawford et al 2006 point out that many various systems for categorizing projects have been proposed in the project management literature. Importantly, they make the point that the attributes that are to be categorized in any such system depend on the purposes of those who are making the categorization.


A categorization of projects developed by Archibald & Prado 2014 is shown in Figure 1-1 below (their Table 1, excluding examples they give of each project category and sub-category). Archibald & Prado say that the sub-categories within each major category have similar project life cycle phases and project management processes, which evidently reflects the purpose underlying this categorization.


To read entire article (click here)

Editor’s note: This series of articles on the categorization of projects and programs is by Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon), Life Fellow of AIPM (Australia), a pioneer in the field of professional project management and one of the most widely recognized voices in the practice of program and project management.   Long retired, Alan is still accepting some of the most challenging research and writing assignments; he is a frequent contributor to the PM World Journal.  See his author profile below

About the Author

alan-stretton-bioAlan Stretton, PhD       flag-australia

Faculty Corps, University of Management

and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)

Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)

Alan Stretton is one of the pioneers of modern project management.  He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA.  In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.   Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects.  He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France).  Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992.  He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996.  He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management.  He has published over 140 professional articles and papers.  Alan can be contacted at [email protected].

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.