nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2009‒07‒03
five papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Parnu College - Tartu University

  1. Variation in Experience and Team Familiarity: Evidence from Indian Software Services By Robert S. Huckman; Bradley R. Staats
  2. Starting an R&D Project under Uncertainty By Sabien Dobbelaere; Roland Iwan Luttens; Bettina Peters
  3. Designing plans for organizational development, lessons from three large-scale SME-initiatives By Lommelen, Tinne; Hertog, Friso den; Beck, Lien; Sluismans, Raf
  4. Basic Infrastructure for a Nuclear Power Project By International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA
  5. Estimating the Impact of Metro North By Edgar Morgenroth

  1. By: Robert S. Huckman (Harvard Business School, Technology and Operations Management Unit); Bradley R. Staats (Harvard Business School)
    Abstract: In settings ranging from product development to service delivery, fluid teams of individuals with different sets of experience are tasked with projects that are critical to their organization's success. Although building teams from individuals with different prior experience is increasingly necessary, prior work examining the relationship between experience and performance fails to find a consistent effect of variation in experience on performance. The problem is that variation in experience improves a team's information processing capacity and knowledge base, but also creates coordination challenges. We hypothesize that team familiarity - team members' prior experience working with one another - is one mechanism that helps teams leverage the potential benefits of variation in team member experience by alleviating coordination problems that such variation may create. We use several years of detailed project- and individual-level data from an Indian software services firm, Wipro Technologies, to examine the effects of team familiarity and variation in experience on multiple measures of performance for software development projects. In most cases, we do not find evidence of a significant main effect for variation in experience on performance. However, when we examine the interaction of team familiarity and variation in experience, we see a complementary effect on measures of delivery performance (i.e., a project being delivered on time and on budget). In team familiarity, our paper identifies one mechanism for capturing the performance benefits of variation in experience and provides insight into how the broader management of experience accumulation affects team performance.
    Keywords: Experience, Knowledge, Software, Team Familiarity, Variation
    Date: 2009–05
  2. By: Sabien Dobbelaere (VU University Amsterdam); Roland Iwan Luttens (SHERPPA, Ghent University, and CORE, Université Catholique de Louvain); Bettina Peters (Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW))
    Abstract: We study a two-stage R&D project with an abandonment option. Two types of uncertainty influence the decision to start R&D. Demand uncertainty is modelled as a lottery between a proportional increase and decrease in demand. Technical uncertainty is modelled as a lottery between a decrease and increase in the cost to continue R&D. We relate differences in uncertainty to differences in risk premia. We deduct testable hypotheses on the basis of which we empirically analyze the impact of uncertainty on the decision to start an R&D project. Using data for about 4000 German firms in manufacturing and services (CIS IV), our model predictions are strongly confirmed.
    Keywords: Investment under uncertainty; R&D; demand uncertainty; technical uncertainty; entry threat
    JEL: D21 D81 L12 O31
    Date: 2009–05–15
  3. By: Lommelen, Tinne (UNU-MERIT, University Hasselt); Hertog, Friso den (UNU-MERIT); Beck, Lien (University Hasselt); Sluismans, Raf (UNU-MERIT)
    Abstract: This paper reflects upon the way that we balanced design and development in three specific case projects in order to contribute to creating and accumulating knowledge that is both relevant to practitioners and academics. More specifically, it is shown how learning within one project was used to improve the design of the next project. The three projects were set up in the context of government-sponsored social science programs and aimed at improving innovation in SMEs. As the paper shows, looking at these three projects shows the contribution from seeing design and development as two sides of the same coin.
    Keywords: design-oriented research, organizational development, large-scale projects
    JEL: D23 D83 M10 O22 O33
    Date: 2009
  4. By: International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA
    Abstract: This publication was produced as a direction to increase the capability of Member States to plan and implement nuclear power programmes and to establish and enhance national nuclear infrastructure. This publication should be used in conjunction with the IAEA Safety Standards Series and other appropriate safety related and safeguards publications. [IAEA-TECDOC-1513]
    Keywords: nuclear power, infrastructure, safety, project, physical facilities, water supply, power, transport, earthquake monotoring station, foreign investment
    Date: 2009
  5. By: Edgar Morgenroth (ESRI)
    Abstract: The single largest project under the Irish National Development Plan (NDP) 2007-2013, is the construction of a Metro system. Despite the fact that this is the largest project under the NDP and the government?s transport strategy, Transport 21, no cost benefit analysis on the project has been published. This paper aims at addressing this lack of published analysis by considering the likely economic impact one of the Metro projects, Metro-North. In doing so the paper implements two novel methods namely the use of estimates from hedonic house price models and the results from macroeconomic studies instead of the conventional cost-benefit analysis. The two methods come up with contradictory results in that the hedonic pricing methodology would suggest that the Metro-North project should not proceed while the macroeconomic approach suggests the investment should go ahead. These results are dependent on the underlying assumptions, excluded benefits and parameters used, but given the analysis in the paper alternatives can be implemented readily.
    Date: 2009–06

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