Applying Actor-Network Theory as a sensemaking framework for complex organisational change programs

Publication Type:
Journal Article
International Journal of Project Management, 2013, 31 (8), pp. 1118 - 1128
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The implementation of a Project Management Information System (PMIS) in three public sector agencies is examined using Actor-Network Theory, an infrequently applied approach to project management research. Use of the PMIS focused on practitioner capability, without acting as a mechanism of project control. This is different to how a PMIS is generally portrayed in the literature, suggesting a need to rethink the ways a PMIS can support project management.The research revealed that the PMIS software application, by itself, would have had limited impact, and similarly the practitioner-researchers who developed and implemented the PMIS would, by themselves, have been less effective. Instead, the contribution, effectiveness and capability came from the stable network of association between the practitioner-researchers and the PMIS; an actor-network, which allowed other networks to stabilise and develop, as new users learned how to conceptualise their work through project management concepts, and developed their project management capability. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd and APM IPMA.
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