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Journal Article

Exposing the Influencing Factors on Software Project Delay with Actor‑Network Theory  pp139-153

Zana Ahmedshareef, Robert Hughes, Miltos Petridis

© Nov 2014 Volume 12 Issue 2, ECRM 2014, Editor: Ann Brown, pp75 - 167

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Abstract: Managing large software projects through global development teams is a complex undertaking; it involves managing interdependent problems and dynamic situations that are constantly changing. The research and practice bodies of knowledge need to m atch that complexity if they are to provide practical solutions to the challenges facing such projects. This research investigates the interdependent influences exerted on project progress that emerge during project execution and cause schedule delay. Thi s paper aims to demonstrate the value of integrating different research methods and techniques from the technical and social domains in order to address such complexity, in particular the utility of actor‑network theory (ANT) to expose the influencing f actors on project schedule delay. The research approach (Mixed method) was applied to empirical data from a global software provider, integrating quantitative analysis (project metrics) with qualitative analysis (grounded theory) and culminating in the development of an explanation model (ANT). The findings demonstrate that considerable benefit can be gained from the fuller understanding of the management dynamics during project execution provided by this approach. ANT makes researchers look at th e networks of influence at play between human and nonhuman elements of the project, thus offering a richer picture of the project.


Keywords: Keywords: Research methods, Actor-network theory, Grounded theory, Project management, Information systems development, Software development


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