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Breaking out of the straitjacket of project research: In search of contribution
Umeå School of Business, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden.
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0980-7877
2011 (English)In: International Journal of Managing Projects in Business/Emerald, ISSN 1753-8378, E-ISSN 1753-8386, Vol. 4, no 3, 378-388 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how a different and partly new strategy is needed in order to make research on projects relevant and interesting to a wider scientific community, including organisation and management theory. Design/methodology/approach – The aim is accomplished through a mystery-focused process that identifies what is not explained and continuously confronts empirical data with theoretical explanations in an interactive manner. Findings – Based on a phenomenology-stimulated meta-analysis of the field of project research, the paper outlines an alternative view of the field of project research and four streams of research, each of which is represented by its own scope, focus, audience and “taken-for-granted” assumptions. The streams are: in search of best practice, in search of legitimacy, in search of inspiration and in search of contribution. Research limitations/implications – The paper suggests that, in order to make an true impact on management and social science theories in general, projects must be redefined as objects of study rather than the raison d'être. The inherent paradox, and the conclusion of the paper is that, in order to become more relevant for a broader research community, projects must be reduced to an empirical illustration, a case among others. Originality/value – The paper provides a meta-analysis of the project management research field and offers new insights into challenges that need to be addressed in order to make project management research relevant for a wider management research community.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 4, no 3, 378-388 p.
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-28873DOI: 10.1108/17538371111144139Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84865355527OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-28873DiVA: diva2:973764
Available from: 2016-09-22 Created: 2016-09-22 Last updated: 2016-09-22Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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