James D. Abbey and V. Daniel R. Guide, Jr.
This article investigates closed-loop supply chain (CLSC) as a process flow. It then presents the evolution of CLSCs as a fundamental piece of the broader business and the natural environment (B&NE) related framework of reduce, reuse, and recycle. It addresses how reverse supply chains differ from forward chains, what activities drive a reverse supply chain, and how a CLSC coordinates the forward and reverse supply chains. Product acquisition management (PrAM) focuses on obtaining the used products from the user. The three core facets of PrAM systems are presented. The reduce, reuse, and recycle (3R) hierarchy can be used to gain a more holistic view of CLSCs. Finding an appropriate contract or other means to align the incentives can prove crucial for acquiring the returned products. The future of CLSC will require a more holistic view of CLSCs across multiple business disciplines.
Koen van Bommel and André Spicer
This chapter examines the role of Critical Management Studies (CMS) in the exploration of paradoxes in organizations. CMS focuses on the study of paradoxes in organizational life and aims to address these paradoxes in order to reveal and question structures of oppression and contribute to a progressive force for emancipatory change. The paradoxical aspects of CMS are discussed and various paradoxes addressed by its scholars are explained. These paradoxes are examined from diverse theoretical traditions such as feminism, queer theory, colonialism, and the work of Marx, Weber, and Foucault. Notwithstanding this theoretical pluralism, CMS’ aim is to uncover the often unseen dynamics that shape almost all core organizational processes. The value of considering paradoxes from a CMS perspective is also discussed. Finally, suggestions about how to locate and examine hidden paradoxes are offered and a research agenda around CMS and paradox is presented.
Thomas E. Johnsen, Richard C. Lamming, and Christine M. Harland
This article discusses inter-organizational relationships (IORs) in the wider context of chains and networks of organizations. It distinguishes between IORs, chains, and networks and subsets of those, perceived through different disciplinary lenses. Different lenses lead researchers to operate at different units of analysis within relationships, chains, and networks. For example, a sociological focus gives rise to researchers observing social connections. An economic focus leads to observations of economic exchanges between organizations conceptualized as economic entities. A strategic management focus leads the researcher to observe strategic configurations and positions. These different units of analysis represent different types of relationship, chain, and network and require different methodologies, methods, and techniques to research them. In particular, this article uses an operations and supply lens to observe supply relationships, chains, and networks.
Martin Hoegl, Miriam Muethel, and Hans Georg Gemuenden
Geographically dispersed, or virtual, project teams are increasingly used to engage specialized knowledge at different locations. This is particularly true for complex and dynamic projects and process development. In such contexts, companies seek to leverage superior knowledge residing at different locations (e.g. technical knowledge, local market knowledge) through direct collaboration, partly relying on computer-mediated communication. Likewise, companies are staffing projects with individuals at different sites to capture favorable labor costs. This article starts with a more detailed discussion of the four characteristics of the work and task context of dispersed project teams, specifically highlighting the leadership challenges stemming from these characteristics. It then discusses how shared leadership in dispersed project teams drives their teamwork quality, arguing that shared leadership helps overcome the challenges of geographic dispersion, national diversity, electronic dependence, and task uncertainty.
Graham M. Winch and Eunice Maytorena
This article aims to reconnect project risk management with its roots in psychology and economics and thereby generate a cognitive approach to project risk management. While there has been widespread application of the tools and techniques of project risk management, and good practice has been captured in a large number of different standards and texts, few signs of improvement are apparent in project performance. The article suggest that the inappropriate use of project risk management techniques may be part of the problem rather than part of the solution here, and that we need to rethink project risk management from first principles. Starting from a presumption that project risk management is the essence of project management more generally, the article offers a review of some of the key contributions from psychology and economics that have shaped our thinking before presenting a cognitive model of project risk managing.
Sergio Pellegrinelli, David Partington, and Joana G. Geraldi
The rise of the professional discipline of project management has been accompanied by a growth in the number of project management academics who seek to publish their work in highly rated management journals, especially those that require research to be positioned within an established theoretical field. A growing number of scholars have used project management as the context within which to conduct such theory-based inquiry from other perspectives. Important theory-based contributions to management practice have been achieved. This article argues that programs and program management provide further opportunities for researchers to apply and extend theory, thereby informing management practice in a number of ways and adding to an important body of knowledge. Program management has developed, and continues to evolve, as a managerial approach for coordinating primarily project-based activities and marshalling resources, and for the realization of complex, emergent endeavors.
Markus Hällgren and Anders Söderholm
This article mainly focuses on projects-as-practice based in the social sciences, and it suggests that the situated practice side of a social phenomenon is also important as a basis of study for understanding what is done. While the study is empirical, it focuses on the actions and actors involved in building or organizing environments, rather than simply looking at aggregated social processes or structures. With this approach, projects are seen as the sum of the actions of the people involved, which emphasizes both how people involved in projects act and how their typical workdays are structured. This may shed light on areas such as the importance of project management practice for strategic organizational change or the improvisation that is necessary for project execution.
Damian Hodgson and Daniel Muzio
There has been in recent years a marked upsurge in interest in professionalism in project management. The professionalization of project management is apparently demanded by employers, clients, and sponsors alike, seeking guarantees of competence in the delivery of projects. Equally, there appears to be significant demand on the part of project management (PM) practitioners seeking more secure and transferable credentials to act as guarantees of competence and to build a more reliable, informed, and effective knowledge base in what is often an “accidental” or secondary profession. Nonetheless, skepticism persists regarding the depth and breadth of project management's institutionalized knowledge base, and the potential for the field to attain the levels of internal organization, legitimacy, and influence achieved by other, more established professions. Key to this debate are the activities of the various professional associations which represent project management.
Bernard Cova and Robert Salle
This article develops the marketing dimension of project management. It does not deal with instances of so-called “internal” project-marketing, conceived and carried out within a company, but focuses solely on “external” project-marketing, comprised of contractors working on their customers' behalf. This includes projects in areas such as defense, construction, engineering, telecommunications, aerospace, shipbuilding, etc., mainly involving large-scale or infrastructure projects. The purpose of this article is not to summarize the entire “external” project-marketing approach but to concentrate on those constructivist aspects that speak to current project management issues.
This article presents a story and analysis of project management as a scientific field, its theoretical foundations, and some avenues for the future. It is a story about fragmentation, progress, and pluralism, i.e. the acknowledgement of a diversity of views and perspectives. The article, first, presents a summary of the present state of theorizing within the area, arguing that a number of different schools of thought and perspectives can be identified that give a better account of the developments made in the past ten to fifteen years compared to the common distinction into either rationalistic or organization theory traditions. Second, it discusses the importance of types and typologies in project management and suggests that there is a need to frame the specific phenomenon under study to seek commonalities and explore the differences among projects.