Large engineering projects. Favouring resilience in increasingly complex environments grafting an adaptive approach to waterfall technique

On issue: 
DOI code: 

Traditional project management methodologies are too plan-driven to help organizations tackle increasing levels of complexity that characterize Large Engineering Projects (LEPs). By their nature LEPs invoke coordinated application of capital, sophisticated technology, intense planning and political influence: the combination of these peculiar features makes the management of these projects particularly complex to the point whereby traditional project management methodologies are put in difficulty and discussion since in the face of unforeseen circumstances and difficulties they results as excessively rigid and therefore binding consequently undermining the final success of the project.

This paper aims to understand if “adaptive” methodologies should be partially applied in the management of LEPs to overcome the typical constraints found in the rigorous application of classical/traditional methodologies considered as inadequate and too restrictive to cope with the typical complexities of LEPs. In this sense we argue that the partial and targeted application of adaptive methodologies to LEPS should favour resilience, that is the ability to identify an effective and short-term response to any negative external events of destabilizing nature and consequently contribute to the success of the project (in this case LEP) as a whole.