Evaluation of project interdependency visualizations through decision scenario experimentation

Publisher:
Pergamon
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
International Journal of Project Management, 2013, 31 (6), pp. 804 - 816
Issue Date:
2013-01
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The interdependence between projects in complex portfolios sharpens the challenge of project portfolio decision making. Methods that assist with the evaluation of data can address decision challenges such as information overload and time pressure. A decision simulation in a controlled experiment explored the use of visual representations of project interdependency data to support project portfolio decision making. Dependency matrices and network mapping were compared with non-graphical lists of dependency data. The findings show that the type of tool used may influence the quality of the resulting decision. Using visual tools, particularly network mapping displays, is correlated with the best results. The research provides a practical example of experimentation in project and portfolio management research and illustrates how such studies can complement organization-based research. Findings of interest to management include the importance of ensuring adequate time for decision processes and the potential benefits from using visual representations of project interdependence.
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