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Images as action instruments in complex projects
Linköping University, Department of Science and Technology, Visual Information Technology and Applications (VITA). Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
Department of Industrial Information and Control Systems The Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm.
2007 (English)Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Images have always played an important role in project management. Project activities are communicated through diagrams such as Gantt, WBS, PERT, and CPM.  In recent years, new types of images have emerged in large, globally distributed and complex projects exposed to changing and demanding environments. The purpose of this paper is to make an inquiry into how project management activities are supported by these alternative types of images, and suggest reasons why the more traditional types of images appear to be inadequate during turbulent and complex circumstances. As a guiding framework we employ the Activity Domain Theory and the construct of Activity Modalities. Activity modalities are suggested as basic dimensions of human activity coordination; dimensions that can ultimately be traced to the phylogenetic evolution of mankind. In conclusion we find that the alternative images focus on managing critical dependencies and the integration of system parts. Moreover, these images emphasise common understanding and comprehensibility over formalism and rigour. Finally, the alternative images appear to be well aligned with the activity modalities, thus indicating that future research into the management of complex projects needs to take this finding into account.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 26, no 5
National Category
Engineering and Technology
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-54022DOI: 10.1016/j.ijproman.2008.05.009Local ID: 73938OAI: diva2:297018
IRNOP VIII Conference, Brighton, UK, September 19-21, 2007
Available from: 2009-10-10 Created: 2009-10-10 Last updated: 2014-11-07

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Taxén, Lars
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