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Projectification in Iceland measured – a comparison of two methods

Helgi Thor Ingason (School of Science and Engineering, Reykjavik University, Reykjavik, Iceland)
Thordur V. Fridgeirsson (School of Science and Engineering, Reykjavik University, Reykjavik, Iceland)
Haukur Ingi Jonasson (School of Science and Engineering, Reykjavik University, Reykjavik, Iceland)

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business

ISSN: 1753-8378

Article publication date: 1 August 2019

Issue publication date: 8 October 2019

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to improve the methodology of assessing the importance of projects in a national economy. The subject of study is projectification in the Icelandic economy and to measure this, the share of project work in relation to the total work done in an organisation was used as an indicator. This is a time-consuming approach and it was decided to do an additional benchmark study, to verify the alleged importance of projects, and to investigate the usefulness of a benchmark study and establish whether the two approaches could complement each other.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected from 146 organisations in Iceland, regarding the share of project work relative to total work, as explained by Schoper et al. (2018). In addition, by participation in a large quarterly omnibus survey among people with high management positions in their respective companies in Iceland, more general data were collected. The methods and outcomes of both surveys were compared, and general conclusions are drawn.

Findings

The authors conclude that the two research approaches complement each other and could be applied in a systematic way to give a longitudinal view of the evolution of projectification in a society, where projectification is measured, traced over time and benchmarked. The first part is more complicated and expensive in execution, and could be done at longer intervals, whereas the second part takes less effort and can be used to monitor the evolution more regularly.

Originality/value

Two very different research approaches were applied to assess projectification. On the one hand, a detailed quantitative survey of the economic impact of projects. On the other hand, a general survey of a very large sample of managers. This combined approach to assess the level of projectification is new, and the authors hope that this will be of value in the context of developing efficient, reliable and practical methods to assess projectification of societies.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This research was supported by the Icelandic Project Management Association (VSF). The Association had no direct role in the research but contributed to the direct cost associated with data gathering by the contracted professional surveying company. The authors are extremely thankful to VSF for its contribution.

This paper forms part of a special section on “Projectification and the impact on societies”.

Citation

Ingason, H.T., Fridgeirsson, T.V. and Jonasson, H.I. (2019), "Projectification in Iceland measured – a comparison of two methods", International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, Vol. 12 No. 3, pp. 602-616. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJMPB-09-2018-0203

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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