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  • 1.
    Andersson, Carin E.
    et al.
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
    Ljung, Lennart
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
    A Master Program in Project Management: Experiences from combining hard and soft skills2011In: Nordic Academy of Management conference 2011, 2011Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Project management skills are needed in a growing number of areas, all with specific requirements regarding technical and social competencies. Still, the majority of project management training is focusing on technical tools and techniques, emphasized in standards suggested by global professional project management associations. Uncertainties and unique social settings require a managerial approach different from the linear, rational and analytical view of the world provided by international standards such as the PMBOK Guide. A new approach to project management education is needed that deals with the complexity of today’s project environments. This paper describes a one year master program in project management at theKarlstadUniversityinSweden. The program is general and focuses on issues regardless of business area or project type, and mix both technical and social skills. The program was initiated in 2002 and more than 200 students have until today been part of the program. In addition to the mandatory courses in the program, several students have, on voluntary basis, passed the IPMA D-level certification. The paper also presents the results from two different types of evaluations showing that the majority of the students have great use of their education in their current employment.

  • 2.
    Andersson, Carin
    et al.
    Karlstad University.
    Lindskog, Stefan
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT.
    Kartläggning och analys av projektledarkompetens i forskningsprojekt vid Karlstads universitet2007Independent thesis Basic level (professional degree), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Research at universities is today often conducted as projects. This is especially true in the engineering, natural science, medicine, and social science disciplines. Research projects are typically carried out by different categories of employers, such as professors, associate professors, assistant professors, and PhD students. These projects are typically managed by the person that applied for the project money, or the person that is the most experienced researcher at the department, which is often a professor or associate professor. From such leading persons, miracles are expected. Except acting as project managers, they are also engaged in many other parallel activities, e.g., supervision of PhD students, undergraduate and graduate education, conference organization and administration, project application writing, and representing the department internally as well as externally.

    In this report, a survey of project management competence within research projects at Karlstad University is presented. Empirical data have been gathered through two questionnaires and six complementary interviews. Professors and associate professors as well as PhD students have participated in the study. The survey shows that the active project managers have learned to lead projects based on experience and very few project managers have a formal leadership education. This implies that long stablished project management methods and tools are seldom used.

    Based on the outcome from the survey and our own observations, four concrete activities to improve project management skills are proposed in the report. The first activity is to provide a suitable and well-balanced course in project management methods that is offered to both active and future project managers. The second activity is to establish experience networks among active project mangers at Karlstad University. The third activity is to create a mentor program for new project managers. The fourth activity is to establish a group of experienced project managers that can assist in and give support to ongoing and planned projects.

  • 3.
    Andersson, Carin.E
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
    The Project Manager at Work2012In: Makt, Myter och Motstridigheter: Utmaningar i dagens arbetsliv, Karlstads universitet, 2012, p. 1-15Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In the literature there is a common belief that project management is a general theory that is mainly

    about techniques and/or tools used for planning, budgeting, and control. This view has lately been

    questioned due to the fact that it does not give a complete picture of what a project manager actually

    does in their daily work. By including other skills, such as, skills for communication, team building,

    and leadership, a more complete picture of the project management role may be provided. Project

    management research needs more empirical data from project managers about what their role as project

    manager actually means. The purpose of this study is to investigate what it means to work as a project

    manager in small and medium sized organizations. Empirical data is planned to be gathered (in the

    county of Värmland, Sweden) from May through October 2012, using semi-structured interviews and

    participant observations of project managers working in a multi-project management environment.

    Three overlapping analyzes techniques will be used to analyze the gathered data: thematic analysis,

    grounded theory, and narrative analysis. By using these techniques, hopefully this article will expand the

    knowledge and the understanding what a project manager actually does in their daily work.

     

  • 4.
    Andersson, Carin.E
    et al.
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
    Ljung, Lennart
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Karlstad Business School.
    A Master Program in Project Management: Experiences from combining hard and soft skills2011In: Nordic Academy of Management (NFF) 2011 Conference, 2011Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Project management skills are needed in a growing number of areas, all with specific requirements regarding technical and social competencies. Still, the majority of project management training is focusing on technical tools and techniques, emphasized in standards suggested by global professional project management associations. Uncertainties and unique social settings require a managerial approach different from the linear, rational and analytical view of the world provided by international standards such as the PMBOK Guide. A new approach to project management education is needed that deals with the complexity of today’s project environments. This paper describes a one year master program in project management at the KarlstadUniversity in Sweden. The program is general and focuses on issues regardless of business area or project type, and mix both technical and social skills. The program was initiated in 2002 and more than 200 students have until today been part of the program. In addition to the mandatory courses in the program, several students have, on voluntary basis, passed the IPMA D-level certification. The paper also presents the results from two different types of evaluations showing that the majority of the students have great use of their education in their current employment.

    Keywords: project management education; project management knowledge; soft skills; hard skills; pedagogic

  • 5.
    E Andersson, Carin
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
    Användning av metoder i verksamhetsanalys: en studie av sju konsultföretag i IS / IT branschen1999Report (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    Utvecklingen av metoder för systemutveckling har skett från slutet av sextiotalet. På sjuttio- och åttiotalet användes heltäckande metoder för systemutveckling. Med heltäckande menas att metoderna är detaljerade och specificerade ned i minsta detalj. Nuförtiden har dessa metoder ersatts av mindre och flexiblare metoder, som är mer teknikanpassade och konkreta. Denna uppsats syftar till att undersöka och kartlägga hur konsultföretag i IS/IT-branschen använder sina metoder i kundens verksamhetsanalys. Jag vill komma fram till vilken syn konsultföretagen har på dessa metoder, vilka styrkor och svagheter som konsultföretagen finner hos sina metoder, vilka arbetsformer som finns och hur de dokumenterar sina metoder. Studien bygger på litteratur inom ämnet samt intervjuer av sju konsultföretag i Karlstad. I studien framgår det att verksamhetsutvecklarna måste ha rätt bakgrund och erfarenhet av verksamhetsanalys. Många företag använder metoder som verktygslådor, där de väljer delar efter behov. Dessa företag ser det som en styrka med sina metoder att de kan använda dessa på alla kunder med olika anpassningar. Delar av metoderna är också implicita dvs. underförstådda, hos verksamhetsutvecklare på de flesta företagen. Detta i samband med en bristande dokumentation av erfarenheter i samband med användningen av metoderna ser jag som väldigt sårbart hos flera företag. Nyckelord. Metoder, verksamhetsanalys.

  • 6.
    E Andersson, Carin
    et al.
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
    Lindskog, Stefan
    Kartläggning och analys av projektledarkompetens i forskningsprojekt vid Karlstads universitet2007Report (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    Idag bedrivs en stor del av forskningen vid högskolor och universitet i projektform. Detta gäller inte minst inom teknik, naturvetenskap och medicin, men numer också inom samhällsvetenskap.Det är vanligt att olika personalkategorier så som exempelvis professorer,docenter, och doktorander ingår i projekten. Projektledaren är oftast den som har ansökt om projektmedlen, eller den person som är mest vetenskapligt meriterad vid avdelningen, vilket ofta är en professor eller docent med lång erfarenhet. Av de här personerna förväntar sig organisationen ofta underverk. De ska medverka i alla möjliga typer av aktiviteter, som exempelvis handledning av doktorander,undervisning, medverkande vid och organiserande av konferenser,ansökan om medel för nya projekt och vara avdelningens ansikte utåt. Dessutom ska de också agera projektledare för en eller flera parallella projekt.I den här uppsatsen redovisar vi först en kartläggning av projektledarkompetens hos projektledare i forskningsprojekt vid Karlstads universitet. Kartläggningen har gjorts med stöd av två enkätundersökningar och sex stycken kompletterande intervjuer. Såväl professorer och docenter som doktorander har medverkat i studien. Kartläggningen visar klart och tydligt att de flesta projektledarna leder projekten baserat på tidigare erfarenheter och merparten saknar ledarskapsutbildning. Detta innebär att beprövade projektledningsmetoder och tekniker sällan används.Baserat på resultat från enkätundersökningarna, intervjuerna och deltagande observationer presenterar vi dessutom fyra konkreta förbättringsåtgärder för forskningsprojekt vid Karlstads universitet. Åtgärderna tror vi kan effektivisera forskningsprojekten och därmed medföra en besparing för Karlstads universitet. Den första åtgärden är att utveckla en kurs i projektledningsmetodik, som sedan erbjuds till alla projektledare vid Karlstads universitet.Den andra åtgärden är att bygga upp en eller flera erfarenhetsnätverk bland aktiva projektledare. Den tredje åtgärden är att skapa ett mentorsprogram för stöd åt nya projektledare. Den fjärde och sista åtgärden är att etablera en grupp med erfarna projektledare som kan ge stöd åt andra projektledare.

  • 7.
    Lindskog, Carin
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
    Experiences of Tensions Between Exploitation and Exploration in Agile Software Development Projects2019In: NFF 2019 The 25th Nordic Academy of Management Conference: Nordic energies, 2019Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Context: Agile software development (ASD) projects were assessed through the classical triple constraints of cost, quality, and schedule, as well as on communication, collaboration, and responsiveness.

    Objective: Our objective is to examines ASD practitioners' experiences of tensions or conflicting demands between adapting into processes, being structured and having continuity (also called exploitation), on the one hand, and being creative, flexible and autonomous on the other (also called exploration).

    Method: We collected data in twelve semi-structured interviews. Thematic analysis was used to identify recurrent themes and sub-themes in the data.

    Results: Three themes and four sub-themes were identified. The findings show ASD practitioners' experiences of tensions labeled in the three main themes: Structure and flexibility, Competence and learning, and Roles and Responsibilities. By identifying how tensions of exploitation and exploration are understood, we contribute to the debate of how organizational ambidexterity is pursued in practice.

  • 8.
    Lindskog, Carin. E
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
    Ambidexterity in Agile Software Development Projects – A conceptual paper2019Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Paradoxes or dilemmas have a long time been discussed in the leadership literature and one of these paradoxes, organizational ambidexterity, is developing as a new research paradigm. Organizational ambidexterity signifies an organizations ability to manage both exploitation and exploration and has been associated with higher levels of organizational performance. How leaders can orchestrate the allocation of resources to both achieve exploitation (continuity) and exploration (change), and at the same time manage conflicts that arise, are the core of leadership challenges. Projects are important aspects of human resource management(HRM) activities. For instance, scholars have point out that projects are a key factor in HRM daily processes and that project development is considered critical to competitive benefit. Today, projects are established within and between organizational functions and often span organizational boundaries. While traditional or plan-driven software development projects were assessed through the classical triple constraints of cost, quality, and schedule, agile software development (ASD) projects are also assessed on e.g., communication, collaboration, and responsiveness. ASD projects possess unique combinations of stability and turbulence. Several agile methods exist, but for all existing methods, the underlying assumption is that they are good at "everything", i.e., both exploitation and exploration. So far, very few research initiatives have analyzed how the ASD frameworks are supporting both exploitation and exploration. The fundamental underpinnings of the ASD research field must therefore be better conceptualized and theorized. The objective of the study is to understand how ambidexterity in the context of ASD projects can be defined. As a help for understanding, this study develop one conceptual framework based on interdisciplinary sources of literature. Furthermore, a second framework provide a clarification of the dynamic capability of ambidexterity from the research field of ASD and the impacts on the different organizational levels. The work will help both researchers and practitioners to understand how to prepare organizations in a better way in order to handle the variety of future business requirements.

  • 9. Lindskog, Carin.E
    Exploitation and Exploration in Business Process Management – An exploratory paper2018Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This exploratory paper introduces the terms exploitation and exploration within the business process management (BPM) context. Despite the fact that BPM grows in popularity, more and more organizations report on BPM failure. The most recent development in the BPM field has led to a variety of new requirements. Almost all processes in BPM are different and may thus be almost impossible to standardize. Researchers in the BPM research field have recently differentiated between exploitation and exploration as two distinct goals of BPM. Today, BPM is applied to different purposes and the trend is going from the exploitation capabilities of BPM to exploration capabilities. This paper addresses the following research question: Can an understanding of exploitation and exploration be a help for BPM organizations to become more successful? For long-term success, it is essential for BPM organizations to identify the competencies and skills of their employees according to changed requirements. The paper ends with an overview of the author’s ongoing thesis project.

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