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Article
Publication date: 4 January 2016

Henrico Plantinga and André Dorée

– The purpose of this paper is to provide insights into the reasoning behind the development of new procurement approaches by public sector clients.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide insights into the reasoning behind the development of new procurement approaches by public sector clients.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study approach focuses on a procurement development process by a public sector client. It investigates the reasoning behind various applications of the project alliancing concept in rail infrastructure projects over a period of 15 years. Alliancing applications are singled out and mapped against a number of criteria derived from literature on alliancing. The reasoning behind these applications and their differences are reconstructed from contextual documentation. Theories and concepts from the fields of strategic management and knowledge management literature are used to analyse the results.

Findings

The development process seems to be evolutionary rather than deliberately planned. The uncovered variations in alliancing applications can only to a very limited extent be explained by the reconstructed reasoning. This suggests that the applied designs are mostly based on implicit reasoning by individual project teams. From a strategic management perspective, the development pattern resembles the emergent type of strategy formation.

Originality/value

This study offers an initial insight into the reasoning processes behind the (re-)design of procurement approaches within a public sector client organization. A unique feature of this study is that these reasoning processes are explored from the strategy formation perspective that conceptually links the design of new procurement approaches to strategic management theory.

Details

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8378

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Article
Publication date: 9 September 2014

Marcus Jefferies, Graham John Brewer and Thayaparan Gajendran

There has been a significant increase in the use of relationship contracting in the global construction industry, with strategies such as Partnering, Alliancing and…

Abstract

Purpose

There has been a significant increase in the use of relationship contracting in the global construction industry, with strategies such as Partnering, Alliancing and Public-Private Partnerships all used. These approaches were introduced to the Australian construction industry in the 1990s in an attempt to overcome the adversarial nature of traditional contracting methods. The purpose of this paper is to investigate factors that influence the successful implementation of Project Alliancing by means of a case study approach focusing on the procurement of a large water treatment plant. The research findings identify critical success factors (CSFs) both from literature and the case study project.

Design/methodology/approach

The research traces the origins of Alliancing and identifies CSFs by reviewing literature and analysing a current case study project. The paper first identifies CSFs on a global scale by establishing a theoretical framework of CSFs and then compares this to the case study project. A case study of an Australian Alliance project is investigated whereby a semi-structured interview process, involving senior managers from the six partners from the Alliance, was used in conjunction with a review of project documentation. The findings of the case study project are compared to the literature and any new CSFs are identified.

Findings

Alliancing helps to establish and manage the relationships between all parties, remove barriers and encourage maximum contribution to achieve success. Alliancing provides a project delivery method that promotes open communication, equality and a systematic problem resolution process. Team culture focusing on an “open book/no blame” approach is vital to the success of an Alliance. Five CSFs were identified as specifically influencing the success of the case study project: the use of an integrated Alliance office; the staging of project and stretch targets; establishing project specific key performance indicators; facilitating on-going workshops; and the integration of a web-based management programme.

Originality/value

The research findings assist both public and private sectors by identifying factors that are critical for success in Alliancing. Five additional factors were identified as specifically influencing the success of the case study project. Since this research was conducted, Australia has seen a further increase in relationship contracting where the likes of Alliancing is often used as the default approach for certain Public Sector projects. Ongoing research into Alliancing is vital to ensure the development of sustainable procurement models, successful operational viability, fair risk distribution and value for money.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 21 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2002

D.H.T. Walker

Team leaders require enthusiasm and commitment from their team members to enable them to be agile, adaptable and responsive. This paper uses results from a longitudinal…

Abstract

Team leaders require enthusiasm and commitment from their team members to enable them to be agile, adaptable and responsive. This paper uses results from a longitudinal study of a successful building construction project delivered using a project alliancing approach. Results presented use a model pioneered by the US academic Peter Senge. This helps explain the system dynamics that generated the necessary enthusiasm and commitment to support collaboration and co‐operation within and between project teams. It became clear that enthusiasm and commitment can be achieved on construction projects provided that a collaborative and co‐operative workplace environment is carefully nurtured and crafted, which not only supports drivers for enthusiasm and commitment, but also addresses barriers that inhibit those values. Experience gained from studying the exemplar project illustrated in this paper provides the basis for a model of how to create and maintain the necessary workplace environment.

Details

Construction Innovation, vol. 2 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 1 May 2019

Pertti Lahdenperä

The paper aims to describe the evolution and use of project alliancing in Finland: how the model was discovered, and then, little by little, became an established practice.

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to describe the evolution and use of project alliancing in Finland: how the model was discovered, and then, little by little, became an established practice.

Design/Methodology/Approach

The paper is based on a long-term observation of the construction sector activities, involvement in their development and a review of related research and practice documents.

Findings

The paper illustrates how a major change may be laborious. It also reveals that the application of project alliancing seems to have been successful so far, but there are still threats on the horizon.

Research Limitations/Implications

The overview ignores many meaningful details and does not include a critical review of the positive experiences reported by the industry. There certainly is need for related research.

Practical Implications

The study offers a point of reference for evaluation of the smoothness of the progress of industry wide changes.

Originality/Value

This paper seems to be the first one providing a more comprehensive picture of the progress and use of alliancing in Finland, thus supplementing existing view- and project-specific examinations.

Details

10th Nordic Conference on Construction Economics and Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-051-1

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2002

Derek H.T. Walker, Keith Hampson and Renaye Peters

Significant differences between project partnering and project alliancing occur in the selection process, management structure of the organisations undertaking the project

Abstract

Significant differences between project partnering and project alliancing occur in the selection process, management structure of the organisations undertaking the project and nature of risk and reward incentives. This paper helps clarify the nature of project alliancing and how alliance member organisations were selected for this case study. A core issue that differentiates between the two approaches is that in partnering, partners may reap rewards at the expense of other partners. In alliancing each alliance member places their profit margin and reward structure “at risk”. Thus in alliancing, the entire alliance entity either benefits together or not all. This fundamentally changes the motivation and dynamics of the relationship between alliance members.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 7 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2017

Che Khairil Izam Che Ibrahim, Seosamh B. Costello, Suzanne Wilkinson and Derek Walker

The purpose of this paper is to explore innovation in alliance contracting in the New Zealand construction industry in terms of features (i.e. development process…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore innovation in alliance contracting in the New Zealand construction industry in terms of features (i.e. development process, risk/reward framework and leadership structure) that could influence successful project outcomes.

Design/methodology/approach

This study employed a qualitative research methodology. Three alliancing projects have been identified as the cases. By using interviews with the project’s owner and non-owner participants and related project documentation, the relevant features in the three examined cases were identified and compared.

Findings

The findings revealed differences in the reasoning why a particular alliance approach was implemented, how the alliance selection process was conducted and what kind of leadership structure was adopted. Interestingly, a number of unique and innovative practices to alliancing were also highlighted, notably the innovative agreements, innovative governance structure and innovative functional teams that influence the synergistically creative solutions to suit the clients’ needs.

Practical implications

The innovative practices identified in this study have brought the alliancing concept to a new level of practice in the industry. The findings provide a basis and a platform for discussion, both nationally and internationally, to gain greater understanding in managing different alliance contracting towards breakthrough outcomes.

Originality/value

This study extends the alliancing procurement literature, in particular, but also provides significant insights into innovative advancements to the collaborative procurement approaches.

Details

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 10 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8378

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2001

D.H.T. Walker, R.J. Peters, K.D. Hampson and M.J. Thompson

This paper outlines how the project agreement operating on the Australian National Museum project in Canberra, Australia facilitated a responsible and responsive workplace…

Abstract

This paper outlines how the project agreement operating on the Australian National Museum project in Canberra, Australia facilitated a responsible and responsive workplace environment for construction workers. A project alliancing approach was adopted and designed to encourage industrial relations innovation in the workplace. The trigger for this approach was the perceived success of the alliancing working arrangements between key project delivery teams and a desire to extend this arrangement to subcontractors, suppliers and the workforce. Changes in the Australian workplace relations environment and introduction of a national code of practice for the Australian construction industry provided impetus for reaching a new type of workplace agreement. The workplace culture and characteristics of relationships formed between workers and management on that site shaped the agreed terms and conditions of work. It also spurred the pursuit of innovative approaches to project delivery from a technology, management and workplace culture perspective.

Details

Construction Innovation, vol. 1 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

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Article
Publication date: 4 January 2016

Derek H.T. Walker and Beverley M. Lloyd-Walker

The purpose of this paper is to explore and explain the circumstances in which a highly collaborative integrated project delivery form such an alliance is the most…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore and explain the circumstances in which a highly collaborative integrated project delivery form such an alliance is the most appropriate choice of delivering infrastructure projects.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper draws upon two previously published studies on alliancing to enable gathering insights from a quantitative study with some qualitative data that indicates project alliance delivery performance is high and suggests why it may be adopted as a project delivery form. A second qualitative study recently completed and published on integrated collaborative forms of project delivery such as alliances is re-analysed to better understand how and why this form may be successful. Together these two studies allowed a focus on the motivation to form an alliance and specific conditions relating to the alliance party’s level of ability and willingness to deeply collaborate.

Findings

The motivation to deeply collaborate may be triggered by specific internal and external trigger mechanisms. These are identified in the paper together with discussion about the requirement of parties to have sufficient knowledge, skills, attributes and experience to collaborate at a deeply engaged level.

Research limitations/implications

The data used in the studies were from large scale infrastructure construction projects. The examples are mainly drawn from countries where collaboration is common and culturally acceptable; results may not apply to cultures, country or workplace, where high levels of competition are seen to be the optimal strategy for project delivery success. Also, the data were drawn from construction project management (PM). Other project-based areas such as professional services for example may present a different context and hence a different rationale.

Practical implications

The study provides deep insights about the nature of collaboration. It may have wider applicability.

Social implications

Project organising is a social activity with social implications for how they are delivered that affect internal as well as external stakeholders. Being mindful about the motivation to choose a particular delivery form is important.

Originality/value

This is a new area of research in PM and the world faces a massive demand for large scale complex projects. This paper may provide a rational to drive policy in project delivery choices.

Details

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8378

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Article
Publication date: 29 March 2013

Charles MacDonald, Derek H.T. Walker and Neveen Moussa

This paper aims to present and describe a value for money framework that can be used on alliance projects to improve the consideration of, and reporting of, value for money.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present and describe a value for money framework that can be used on alliance projects to improve the consideration of, and reporting of, value for money.

Design/methodology/approach

Development of the framework used a combination of interviews with domain experts, reflection on practice and a Delphi panel to develop and refine a value for money/best value outcome framework for alliance projects.

Findings

The results indicate that a robust framework for demonstrating value for money in an alliance project is feasible, and a framework was developed and tested through the Delphi panel.

Research limitations/implications

The paper briefly describes the research approach but focuses on the outcome rather than the process.

Practical implications

The research aim of this paper is to expand the conceptual view and to illustrate how a practical assessment of value for money in project alliancing can be achieved. It presents the framework and describes it in sufficient detail for readers to be able to adopt and adapt it.

Social implications

Value for money in infrastructure projects has profound implications for society; this extends and enhances techniques used to assure value for money.

Originality/value

The paper provides a value for money framework across the whole project design to delivery cycle.

Details

Facilities, vol. 31 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 15 June 2012

Paul Culmsee and Kailash Awati

The early stages of projects are often characterised by ambiguity arising from differences in stakeholder views regarding project rationale and objectives. The purpose of…

Abstract

Purpose

The early stages of projects are often characterised by ambiguity arising from differences in stakeholder views regarding project rationale and objectives. The purpose of this paper is to present a viewpoint on how to build a shared understanding of project goals and thus reach a shared commitment to achieving them. One of the ways to achieve shared understanding is through open dialogue, free from political and other constraints. The authors call an environment that fosters such dialogue a holding environment. The main aim is to illustrate, via a case study: how an alliance‐based approach to projects can foster a holding environment; and how argument visualisation tools such as IBIS (Issue‐Based Information System) can be used to clarify different points of view and options within such an environment.

Design/methodology/approach

Following a discussion of theoretical background and literature review, an alliancing case study is used to illustrate the development of a holding environment and demonstrate the utility of IBIS in the creation of such an environment.

Findings

It is seen that an alliance‐based approach to projects can provide the foundation for a holding environment. IBIS is seen to facilitate the building of shared understanding by making arguments explicit and capturing decision rationale.

Practical implications

The paper outlines a practical framework for improving the quality of dialogue and achieving stakeholder commitment on projects.

Originality/value

Achieving shared understanding and commitment to action is difficult, particularly in the early stages of projects. The paper outlines the conditions and techniques needed to facilitate this via a non‐trivial case study.

1 – 10 of 295