Emerge of the Engineering Model Until 19th century only military‘ engineers. Archimedes, Leonardo da Vinci, Simon Stevin James Watt (1736-1819) first ‘civil engineer(K.U.Leuven, http://eng.kuleuven.be/algemeen/geschiedenis)
Ideal type of an Engineer… Businesses Governments … and Education
The illusion of modeling …Ever seen a pure geometric figure in nature?
The illusion of modeling …… is that we tend to forget that the real world has vague and murky contours… (Ciborra, 2002)E. Husserl (Phenomenology) and Galileo Galilei• Galileo introduces geometry as a sort of generalization• Everyday reality is real, outcomes of abstractions and models are ideal• Lack of ‘spiritual’ dimension in technological advancement• Problems are solved by reduction
Ideal type of an Engineer…EngineerA priori hierarchical order: top down approachReduction/decomposition (analysis – synthesis – model)Openness, transcending boundariesLinear time – CartesiansDistant knowledge, representationKnowledge about structural characteristic entitiesSpecializationSearch for the adequate, project-oriented meansProjects and designsRespect of prior specifications: exact design requirementsEvaluation through expected level of performance and qualitySeparation of creation and useOutcomes respond to field norms
Foundations for the EngineerNatural Sciences (positivistic perspective)Control Theory (Coase, 1937, Eisenhardt, 1989) Alignment of interestsAgency Theory (Jensen & Meckling, 1976) Contracts (Incomplete Contract Theory) Moral Hazard / Adverse SelectionMistrust in human behavior (Ghoshal, 2005)Amoral theories ?
Research on IS failures Resistance against change 1983 Power, Politics and MIS implementation (Markus) 20 years later: - 2003, "Computers can land people on Mars, why cant they get them to work in a hospital?" - Implementation of an Electronic Patient Record System in a UK Hospital (Jones) - 2004, Informating the Clan: Controlling Physicians Costs and Outcomes (Kohli & Kettinger)
Alternative approaches to PM • PM does not guaranteed success nor eliminates failures • Management of meaning iso management of control ? • Critical perspective on projects: focus on values (technology is not neutral), ethics and morality equally important than efficiency & effectiveness ? • Trust vs Control ? (Devos, 2009) • “Political” PLC 2003, The chimpanzees’ tea party: a new metaphor for project manager (Drummond & Hodgson) 2006, New Possibilities for Project Management Theory A Critical Engagement (Cicmil & Hodgson)
PLC and the ‘Political’ PLC Inception PLC Wild enthusiasm Design & Dev. “P”PLC Search for the guilty
Complexity “(Computer-based) Information Systems defeat their own purpose because they create complexity.” (Weick 1985)
Bricoleur vs EngineerBricoleur EngineerEverything matters A priori hierarchical orderComplex, interconnected system Reduction/decompositionClosed universe Openness, transcending boundariesCyclical time Linear timeIntimate knowledge, familiarity Distant knowledge, representationKnowledge about relationships implying a low Knowledge about structural characteristic entitiesfunctional fixedness biasVersatility implying resilience SpecializationCollection through unplanned encounters Search for the adequate, project-oriented meansUnclear outcomes Projects and designsDialogue with elements in stock (resources) Respect of prior specificationsAssemblage, substitution, …’it’s working’ Evaluation through expected level of performance and qualityCreation and use cannot be dissociated Separation of creation and useOutcomes look unlike anything else Outcomes respond to field norms