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Managing complex development projects: a case study of the use if the system anatomy
KTH, School of Electrical Engineering (EES).
2005 (English)In: Proceedings of Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), Portland, USA, 2005., 2005Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This paper investigates the use of a construct called the system anatomy for planning and controlling projects developing complex systems. The anatomy shows, in a compact form, the most crucial dependencies in the system from the perspective of how it ‘comes-to-life’, hence the concept of an ‘anatomy’. The key point in using the anatomy for project planning is to develop and verify the system in the same order as it ‘comes-to-life’. The project plan in made up in three steps. The first step is to define the anatomy itself. This is followed by the group-ing of functions into verifiable integration steps called increments. Finally, regular time and resource plans are made for each increment. Thus, the planning can be characterized as an integration driven procedure. This ap-proach has been used extensively at Ericsson, a leading manufacturer of telecommunication systems world wide. It has proven to be very successful, especially in terms of promoting communication and developing a shared under-standing about the project.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2005.
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-5391OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-5391DiVA: diva2:9746
Note
QC 20100519Available from: 2006-02-24 Created: 2006-02-24 Last updated: 2010-07-14Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Managing Complex Industrial Projects: A comparison between holistic models
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Managing Complex Industrial Projects: A comparison between holistic models
2005 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

Even though the management of large projects has been studied for many years, the track record is still poor, especially for those projects developing complex systems. This thesis studies projects such as these and attempts to find clues as to why some succeed while others do not. Among the challenges, is the specific yet basic need to create a shared understanding in a group of hundreds engineering specialists with their own ideas (biases) of how things actually work. Further, complex development projects are likely to change, especially those projects involved with new technologies that should be state of the art when they hit the market after several years of development time. Thus, there is a need for a tool that can be used to adapt to changes.

An important part of this thesis is the evaluation of different diagram systems that have been used in different development projects. These diagrams function as a device to create a shared understanding of the project and enable those involved to maneuver the project through changes. The evaluation focuses on what the diagrams can express and how easy it is to understand their content. In terms of expressiveness, one of the three evaluated models: the Anatomy Model, answers the largest number of questions relevant to the total project manager. In terms of ease of use, the evaluation shows that the Anatomy did not only answer more questions relevant to the total project manager, but was also easier to maneuver through compared to the alternative models. The thesis concludes that when working with complex development projects, a model like the anatomy provides the project manager with a simple tool that can be used to maneuver through changes and create a communal understanding. Such a simplified model addresses more questions that are relevant to the project manager and is easier to update than the traditional tools that are suggested in most literature.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH, 2005. 29 p.
Series
Trita-ICS, ISSN 1104-3504 ; 0602
Keyword
Project Management, Complex Project, Anatomy, Dependency Diagrams
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-3860 (URN)
Public defence
2006-03-07, F3, F, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC 20100519Available from: 2006-02-24 Created: 2006-02-24 Last updated: 2010-05-19Bibliographically approved

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