Embedding Projects in Multiple Contexts: A Structuration Perspective
International Journal of Project Management, Vol. 26, No. 1, pp. 30-37, 2008
8 Pages Posted: 2 Apr 2010 Last revised: 18 Apr 2011
Date Written: March 31, 2010
Projects are embedded in multiple systemic contexts, e.g. organizations, interorganizational networks and organizational fields, which jointly facilitate and constrain project organizing. As projects partly evolve in idiosyncratic ways as temporary systems, embedding needs to be understood as a continuous process linking projects to their environments. Using structuration theory, this paper argues that projects get embedded in multiple systemic contexts through the constitution of the very structural properties – tasks, times, and teams – that guide project activities. This implies that project constitution and embedding are inseparable systemic processes. This perspective on project constitution and embedding further elaborates a practice-theoretical understanding of temporary organizing.
Keywords: Project organizing, Embedding, Temporary systems, Structuration theory
JEL Classification: M51, M54, M55, L82, J24, J44, J62, L14, D23, Z13, Z19, M11
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