Why project performance varies: a capability-based explanation

Bannerman, Paul L. and Yetton, Philip W. 2011, Why project performance varies: a capability-based explanation, in PACIS 2011 : Quality Research in Pacific : Proceedings of the 15th Pacific Asia Conference on Information Systems, Association for Information Systems, Atlanta, Ga., pp. 1-15.

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Title Why project performance varies: a capability-based explanation
Author(s) Bannerman, Paul L.
Yetton, Philip W.ORCID iD for Yetton, Philip W. orcid.org/0000-0001-8290-529X
Conference name Pacific Asia Conference on Information Systems (15th : 2011 : Brisbane, Queensland)
Conference location Brisbane, Queensland
Conference dates 2011/07/07 - 2011/07/11
Title of proceedings PACIS 2011 : Quality Research in Pacific : Proceedings of the 15th Pacific Asia Conference on Information Systems
Publication date 2011
Conference series Pacific Asia Conference on Information Systems
Start page 1
End page 15
Total pages 15
Publisher Association for Information Systems
Place of publication Atlanta, Ga.
Keyword(s) project
performance
capabilities
competencies
liability of newness
incumbency
Summary Project performance is a continuing issue in research and practice. As an operational and strategic enabler in organisations, Information Systems is challenged by business value creation being undermined by inconsistent and often poor project outcomes. This theory development paper revisits the issue by proposing a different lens. In contrast to the dominant approaches of identifying critical success/failure/risk factors and developing better processes, it highlights the importance of having the right capabilities to deliver projects and how capabilities can be diminished or undermined by common conditions that can arise in projects, leading to underperformance. Drawing on theory from the management literature, a capabilities-based model of project performance is proposed. The model includes drivers for both project performance and underperformance such that the outcome of any one project is the contested result of these opposing effects on the capabilities available to the project, thus accounting for variations in outcomes. The theory is illustrated using a classic case from the literature and a more contemporary Australian case. The paper concludes that the proposed model improves our understanding of project performance as well as our ability to explain empirical data on performance outcomes and anomalous cases in practice of successive projects failing or succeeding.
ISBN 9781864356441
Language eng
Field of Research 150302 Business Information Systems
Socio Economic Objective 900201 Administration and Business Support Services
HERDC Research category E1.1 Full written paper - refereed
ERA Research output type E Conference publication
Copyright notice ©[2011, The Conference]
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30083716

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