University of Tasmania
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Developing an entrepreneurial project management model for social enterprise organisations

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posted on 2023-05-28, 01:14 authored by James MbiruJames Mbiru
Project management has emerged as a theoretical construct in guiding managerial decision-making, whilst transforming from its traditional dominance in the fields of construction and engineering into sectors such as social enterprise organisations. The assumptions and priorities underpinning extant models of project management necessarily reflect the external environmental forces, competitive dynamics and organisational needs prevalent at the time of their development. There has been recognition that these assumptions and priorities (i.e. their inherent bias towards standards, policies and adherence to guidelines etc.) serve to undermine the role of project management in supporting proactiveness, innovation and creativity needed by organisations to compete in contemporary dynamic markets. To this end, corporate entrepreneurship (CE) literature has provided a strong theoretical basis for incorporating entrepreneurial actions, orientations and decisions into 'traditional' project management processes. As such, this thesis aims to advance understanding for the bases and processes of developing an Entrepreneurial Project Management (EPM) model through the lens of social enterprise organisations in a developing country context. Specifically, this thesis aims to address the following research question: In what ways can project management incorporate elements of CE to construct an EPM Model through the lens of social enterprise organisations in a developing country context? This study employed a multiple-embedded case study approach and relied upon qualitative data gathering and analysis techniques to construct an EPM Model. This qualitative study used a mixed method approach in the form of documentary analysis and semi-structured interviews with twenty-eight key informants. The selection of key informants was based on the managerial experience and their role in project management in social enterprise organisations. This research has found that an EPM Model comprises six important components: (a) entrepreneurial initiation, (b) entrepreneurial planning, (c) entrepreneurial execution, (d) entrepreneurial monitoring and controlling, (e) perform integrated change control, and (f) entrepreneurial closing processes, each of which complements the other to complete the project life-cycle. Overall, this study has identified that a theoretical model linking project management and corporate entrepreneurship theories provides a more influential examination of the developmental journey of project managers when making complex and critical decision choices in a developing economy context, whilst simultaneously incorporating the entrepreneurial notions of inter alia, risk-taking, innovativeness, proactivity, creativity and competitiveness. Managing contemporary projects potentially demands the possession of corporate entrepreneurial capabilities for identifying and understanding opportunities and discovering creative approaches in coordinating project activities. This study therefore, argues that the more dynamic and complex the project environment, the stronger the appetite towards adopting an EPM Model. Complex interrelationships between project management and CE have been established for social enterprise organisations, which can serve as a baseline for future strategic management research.


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