nep-ppm New Economics Papers
on Project, Program and Portfolio Management
Issue of 2016‒03‒23
nine papers chosen by
Arvi Kuura
Tartu Ülikool

  1. Big is Fragile: An Attempt at Theorizing Scale By Atif Ansar; Bent Flyvbjerg; Alexander Budzier; Daniel Lunn
  2. Risk Management—the Revealing Hand By Robert S. Kaplan; Anette Mikes
  3. Team Diversity und Teamleistung im Kontext von geteilter sozialer Identität: Ein Erklärungsansatz über Kurvilinearitäten By Kirch, Johannes; Tomenendal, Matthias
  4. Entangled stakeholder roles and perceptions in health information systems: a longitudinal study of the UK NHS N3 network By Nancy Pouloudi; Wendy Currie; Edgar A. Whitley
  5. Supporting new strategic models of science-industry R&D collaboration: A review of global experiences By Kroll, Henning
  6. Task ordering in incentives under externalities By Murali Agastya; Kanti Parimal Bag; Nona Pepito
  7. Economic Analysis of Climate-Proofing Investment Projects By Asian Development Bank (ADB); Asian Development Bank (ADB); Asian Development Bank (ADB); Asian Development Bank (ADB)
  8. Social Innovation Europe: Country Summary: Poland. Social Innovation in Poland By Klimczuk, Andrzej
  9. Election, Implementation, and Social Capital in SchoolBased Management: Evidence from a Randomized Field Experiment on the COGES Project in Burkina Faso By Sawada, Yasuyuki; Aida, Takeshi; Griffen, Andrew S; Kozuka, Eiji; Noguchi, Haruko; Todo, Yasuyuki

  1. By: Atif Ansar; Bent Flyvbjerg; Alexander Budzier; Daniel Lunn
    Abstract: In this paper we characterise the propensity of big capital investments to systematically deliver poor outcomes as "fragility," a notion suggested by Nassim Taleb. A thing or system that is easily harmed by randomness is fragile. We argue that, contrary to their appearance, big capital investments break easily - i.e. deliver negative net present value - due to various sources of uncertainty that impact them during their long gestation, implementation, and operation periods. We do not refute the existence of economies of scale and scope. Instead we argue that big capital investments have a disproportionate (non-linear) exposure to uncertainties that deliver poor or negative returns above and beyond their economies of scale and scope. We further argue that to succeed, leaders of capital projects need to carefully consider where scaling pays off and where it does not. To automatically assume that "bigger is better," which is common in megaproject management, is a recipe for failure.
    Date: 2016–03
  2. By: Robert S. Kaplan (Harvard Business School, Accounting and Management Unit); Anette Mikes (HEC Lausanne)
    Abstract: Many believe that the recent emphasis on enterprise risk management function is misguided, especially after the failure of sophisticated quantitative risk models during the global financial crisis. The concern is that top-down risk management will inhibit innovation and entrepreneurial activities. We disagree and argue that risk management should function as a Revealing Hand to identify, assess, and mitigate risks in a cost-efficient manner. Done well, the Revealing Hand of risk management adds value to firms by allowing them to take on riskier projects and strategies. But risk management must overcome severe individual and organizational biases that prevent managers and employees from thinking deeply and analytically about their risk exposure. In this paper, we draw lessons from seven case studies about the multiple and contingent ways that a corporate risk function can foster highly interactive and intrusive dialogues to surface and prioritize risks, help to allocate resources to mitigate them, and bring clarity to the value trade-offs and moral dilemmas that lurk in those decisions.
    Date: 2016–03
  3. By: Kirch, Johannes; Tomenendal, Matthias
    Abstract: Die Forschung zur Auswirkung von funktionaler Team Diversity auf Teamleistung hat bisher gemischte Ergebnisse gebracht. Im Kontext der sozialen Identität eines Teams werden im vorliegenden Beitrag zunächst Hypothesen über die Beziehungen zwischen funktionaler Vielfalt, Teamvertrauen, Elaboration und jeweils der Teamleistung als abhängiger Variable aufgestellt. Die Hypothesen werden dann in einer empirischen Feldstudie von 65 Teams aus 49 verschiedenen Organisationen, hauptsächlich aus der D-A-CH-Region, getestet. Im Ergebnis kann das Verhältnis zwischen der funktionalen Vielfalt in Teams und der Teamleistung anhand einer u-förmigen Kurve; zwischen Teamvertrauen sowie dem Kommunikationsstil Elaboration und der Teamleistung dagegen anhand einer umgekehrt u-förmigen kurvilinearen Beziehung beschrieben werden. Das Untersuchungsdesign schafft detaillierte Einblicke in Wirkungszusammenhänge der untersuchten Variablen, generiert Ansätze für weitere theoretische Analysen und bildet die Basis für die Ableitung von Handlungsmaximen für Praktiker in Organisationen.
    Abstract: Research on the relationship between functional diversity and team performance has produced mixed findings. The present study is designed to investigate possible curvilinear relationships between functional team diversity, trust, elaboration and team performance, respectively. The research is based on an empirical study of 65 project and management teams from 49 mostly German organizations. The results show evidence, that there is a u-shaped curvilinear relation between team functional diversity and team performance. Trust and elaboration have an inverted u-shaped curvilinear impact on team performance. The results of the study offer starting points for future research and recommendations for practitioners.
    Date: 2015
  4. By: Nancy Pouloudi; Wendy Currie; Edgar A. Whitley
    Abstract: The combination of pervasive and complex technology and an increasingly challenging healthcare environment is the setting for this research study. As a longitudinal case study, the research tracks the development and implementation of a large private information systems network in the UK National Health Service (NHS). Using stakeholder theory, we unpack the story of a complex network of stakeholder roles and perceptions and how these change over time. Our findings show that favorable and unfavorable positions held by multiple stakeholder groups become entangled, where even the same focal group may adopt competing positions which undermine the adoption of the health network. As this situation develops, the policy and implementation of the broader health IT program becomes confused and destabilized. This study makes three contributions. It expands the literature on stakeholder theory within the IS domain; it extends the managerial focus of stakeholder approaches to include policy-making in the diverse multi-stakeholder setting of healthcare; it demonstrates how stakeholder analysis can be employed in IS research by adopting a broader, dynamic approach to identifying and including different stakeholder groups focusing on their varied roles and views during the course of a large scale health IT program.
    Keywords: entangled information systems; interpretive stakeholder analysis; healthcare; NHS; N3 infrastructure
    JEL: J50
    Date: 2016
  5. By: Kroll, Henning
    Abstract: In recent years, an increasing political interest has developed in long-term strategic partnerships for science-industry collaboration in pre-competitive research and devel-opment, driven by a perception of a distinct "blind spot" in many innovation systems. In different contexts, such initiatives have been politically supported based on different factual opportunities and according to the options available in specific political frame-works. Nonetheless, the lessons to be learned from them are not by definition idiosyn-cratic. Against this background, this paper synthesises experiences from different countries and derives generalisable conclusion with regard to the both the nature of the phenomenon and opportunities for future policy actions to promote its development. In short, it finds that viable initiatives tend to be stakeholder driven and policy pro-grammes have to reflect this in selecting competitively, raise clear expectations and endow individual initiatives with strategic capacity.
    Date: 2016
  6. By: Murali Agastya (University of Sydney, School of economics - University of Sydney); Kanti Parimal Bag (Department of Economics - NUS - National University of Singapore); Nona Pepito (THEMA - Théorie économique, modélisation et applications - Université de Cergy Pontoise - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Department of Economics - Essec Business School)
    Abstract: In a two-task team project with observable task outcomes, optimal incentives prioritize tasks differently depending on task externalities. When the tasks are independent, Principal follows a decreasing order by placing more essential task first. A task is more essential if its failure compromises the overall project's chance of success from a task-specific cutoff level by a greater percentage. This definition has no systematic relations to the variance of task outcomes. In particular, a more risky task can be less essential or more essential. Under externalities, essentiality and impact jointly determine the optimal ordering. A task with much higher impact can be performed early even if it is less essential. Optimal task ordering thus raises subtle new issues and forms an integral part in team incentives. Our analysis provides some contrast with recent team incentives results.
    Keywords: externalities in teams,sequencing, essential tasks, joint projects, team incentives
    Date: 2016–01–25
  7. By: Asian Development Bank (ADB); Asian Development Bank (ADB) (Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department, ADB); Asian Development Bank (ADB) (Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department, ADB); Asian Development Bank (ADB)
    Abstract: Climate change represents an increasing threat to the continued development of the people, preservation of ecosystems, and economic growth of Asia and the Pacific. Mainstreaming climate risk management in all aspects of development is thus key to an effective transition to climate-resilient development pathways. ADB’s climate risk management framework aims to reduce risks resulting from climate change to investment projects in Asia and the Pacific. A key step in this framework is the technical and economic valuation of climate-proofing measures. This report describes the conduct of the cost-benefit analysis of climate proofing investment projects. An important message is that the presence of uncertainty about climate change does not invalidate the conduct of the economic analysis of investment projects, nor does it require a new type of economic analysis. However, the presence of uncertainty does require a different type of decision-making process in which technical and economic expertise combine to present decision makers with the best possible information on the economic efficiency of alternative designs of investment projects.
    Keywords: adb projects, asia, pacific, climate change, climate-proofing, risk analysis, climate risks, economic analysis, project design, project implementation, climate risk resilience, infrastructure development, adaptation costs, cost–benefit analysis, risk management, adaptation, economic analysis
    Date: 2015–09
  8. By: Klimczuk, Andrzej
    Abstract: The history of social innovation in country, challenges being addressed by social innovation. the key actors, who is promoting social innovation. A few of the key projects that illustrate social innovation.
    Keywords: Social Innovation,Poland
    Date: 2015
  9. By: Sawada, Yasuyuki; Aida, Takeshi; Griffen, Andrew S; Kozuka, Eiji; Noguchi, Haruko; Todo, Yasuyuki
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate the role of School Management Committees (COGES) in Burkina Faso. These committees include elected members of each community, and are tasked with setting and implementing annual school plans. The study adopted a hybrid evaluation method incorporating a randomized controlled trial and a large-scale artefactual field experiment a la Levitt and List (2007) on public goods with monetary rewards, to closely examine unexplored issues impacting on the sustainability of community-driven projects, and to identify at least partially the mechanisms of this sustainability. We found that the COGES project significantly increased social capital in the form of voluntary contributions to public goods, especially by linking those that people can be connected to vertically. On average, the direct increase in voluntary contributions to public goods from the implementation of the COGES project was between 8.0 and 10.2%. For groups composed of school principals, teachers, and parents, the average contribution increased by between 12.7 and 24.1% through the democratic election of school management committee members, and by between 11.0 and 17.2% through the implementation of the COGES project. These results suggest that community management projects can improve local cost recovery by increasing local contributions of public goods, potentially leading to better fiscal sustainability in community-driven projects. Moreover, the results based on our hybrid experiments are largely in line with real-world decisions observed in the schools under our investigation. As a byproduct, our findings are supportive of models of other-regarding preferences.
    Keywords: school-based management , randomized controlled trials , artefactual field experiments , public goods game , social capital , sustainability of development project
    Date: 2016–03–10

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