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Article
Sources of Uncertainty in Project Management: a “Real Life” Account
The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society (2008)
  • Dominika Latusek, Kozminski University
  • Dariusz Jemielniak, Kozminski University
Abstract
Although the studies of IT project management abound, they rarely present in one study the perspective of both the customers and the providers. The very relation between customers and provides has been rather rarely explored (Latusek and Jemielniak, 2007). It may be partially due to the fact that usually neither clients, nor providers, are willing to let outsiders into the details of the project. Through this paper we want to take advantage of our unique research setting in which we were allowed to interview representatives of both parties. Through presenting their stories we wish to cast light on the actual practices of organizing in the project work. At the starting point, we assume the equality of both parties: namely we see both parties, the suppliers and the client, as active and equal actors in their relationships. We see their relationships as interactional processes, created and re-created over time by all parties involved (Berger and Luckmann, 1966/83). In interpreting their stories we would like to draw upon the concept of translation (Callon, 1986; Latour, 1987; Law and Hassard, 1999) that, as we believe, may provide an insightful viewpoint on how relationships between suppliers and customers in IT project work develop. It should be also taken into consideration that the high-tech environment is quite often regarded as very stressful and uncertain (Kunda, 1992; Jemielniak, 2005). On the other hand, uncertainty has also been recognized in management and organization literature as an important factor shaping relationships between providers and customers. It is being consciously played out, especially by consultants in the field of IT (e.g. Sturdy, 1997). Apt management of uncertainty maximization and mitigation helps consultants exert control over the bonds with their customers. We would like to graft the theoretical perspective developed in existing studies onto our empirical research, to see the sources of uncertainty in actual project supplier - client encounters.
Keywords
  • uncertainty in IT,
  • software project management,
  • problems in programming
Publication Date
2008
Citation Information
Latusek, Dominika and Jemielniak, Dariusz (2008) Sources of uncertainty in project management – a “real life” account, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, vol. 4(5), pp. 143-150