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Improving Project Management performance in the UAE through Effective Interdependency Management

| October 28, 2015


Chapter 1: Introduction
1.1 Background information
A key aspect of project management is that of managing the resources availed for the project to ensure effective completion of the project. The one challenge that various project managers are faced with is that of interdependencies and the impact that this has on the completion of a given project. This is especially in considering cases where complex project ecologies are observed. This realization is the main basis of this study. The impact of these interdependencies which can either be pooled, reciprocal or sequential is studied in the paper with particular emphasis being on how pooled interdependencies impacts turn key projects in the healthcare sector (Harrison & Lock 2004, 49). This study will be used in developing solutions to mitigate the challenges that have been observed and thereby create more effective project management models and procedures for firms in the United Arab Emirates. Consequently, this paper is geared towards improvement of project management to deliver the most effective, value, and benefit with project outcomes and results in the UAE through implementation of the best practices in interdependency management.
Project interdependency is a relationship between two or more projects in such a manner due to sharing of resources, budget, deliverables, objectives, outcomes, or vision (Martinelli, Waddell, & Rahschulte, 2014). Project interdependencies are very important in project management because they allow for quantification of program benefits since they link several projects to the program objectives in organizations (Letavec, Rollins, & Altwies, 2007).
1.2 Statement of the research problem
The growth of business firms is largely driven by the projects that they undertake, hence organizations require project management skills to achievegood resource management capacities and competitiveness, which result to growth (Brady & Davies 2004). Project management knowledge extends to the management of specific operational and strategic goals that the company wishes to achieve. More and more firms choose project management as a responsive and reliable framework for their products development (Schindler &Eppler 2003). Effective project management involves good understanding and management of project interdependencies in PPM contexts (Dietrich &Lehtonen 2005). However, research has repeatedly shown that many project managers lack the competency to manage more than one project at a time or maximize project outcomes where many projects, managed together or separately, are linked(Patanakul& Milosevic 2009).In their study on application of system dynamics approaches In the UAE, interdependency management has been identified as one of the key challenges for project managers. In a mainstay study by Ameemi (2011) befittingly entitled A Study of Project Manager’s Competence Standards in the UAE, the scholar reports that a significant proportion of project managers in the UAE fail in planning and organization of integrated projects. In essence, in the UAE, project interdependencies in PPM contexts are a key challenge for project management. This is a problem that warrants research aimed at providing recommendations on how to optimize project management through good interdependency management. Notably, the problem of project interdependency being a challenge to project management is more complex in the UAE than in other nations due to the cultural diversity that exists in the nation which has a larger working population of expatriates than the native population in the workforce (Ameemi, 2011). This study is geared towards providing recommendations to this challenge in the UAE after exhaustively discussing the problem in the light of previous research on the topic.

1.3 Research objectives and questions
The overarching goal of this study is to critically investigate the concept of project interdependencies and how it is a challenge in project management and hence provides recommendations on how to improve project management in the UAE. The specific objectives in this study are:
1. To investigate the concept of project interdependencies and explore how it affects project management.
2. To analyze the problem of poor project interdependency management as a challenge of project management in the UAE, the challenges facing portfolio and programme management to effectively manage interdependencies between projects
3. To compare project interdependency management in the UAE to the ideal or standard approaches to management in PPM contexts and provide recommendations on how PPM can develop positive relationships between PM that would enable the effective management of shared resources.
To fulfill the above objectives, this study will answer the following research questions.
a. How do project interdependencies affect project management in the PPM context?
b. How competent are project managers in the UAE in regard to project interdependency management? What are the factors that make project interdependencies a challenge in project management in the nation?
c. What are the best project interdependency management practices? What improvements should be made to project interdependency management in the UAE in order to improve project management?
This study will contribute significantly to the project management literature and provide insight into the improvement of project management practices in the UAE. Project management is a vital element of organizational management that contributes directly to organizational performance. This study is henceforth very important because it highlights and provides insight on issues that can affect the success of many organizations in the UAE.

Chapter 2: Review of Literatures
2.1 Project management: Definitions
In every discussion of project management, a definition of the term suffices. Likewise, in this paper, it is very important to develop an operational definition of the term before exploring the topic in depth. Project management is a heavily studied topic and has been defined differently by different scholars and academicians. A good way of understanding project management and comprehending how it is implemented in business and what it entails, it is important to view the term as a sort of portmanteau formed by the words ‘project’ and ‘management’. Defining both words separately can offer a good insight to understand project management. The word ‘project’ is best defined as “a unique process, consisting of a set of coordinated and controlled activities with start and finish dates, undertaken to achieve an objectives conforming to specific requirements, including constraints of time, cost and resources” (Lester 2014, 1). In essence, a project is an undertaking aimed at the achievement of measurable goals using pre-determined resources and time.
Management, on the other hand, is defined as the process of getting things done. One of the most popular definitions of management was put forward by the legendary Frederick W. Taylor, who defined the term as “the art of knowing what you want to do and then seeing that it is done in the best and cheapest way”(Taylor cited in Havinal, 2009, p. 3). This definition is the anchor of management decisions that simplify the concept as just the process of influencing others to do the things that one wants done. Koontz and O’Donnell (1974, p. 3) define management as “the direction and maintenance of an internal environment in an enterprise where individuals working in groups can perform efficiently and effectively towards the attainment of group goals”. This is perhaps the best definition of management because it creates a better picture of management as an internal organizational process through which people are led towards achievement of organizational interests.
From the above definitions of project and management, we can conjure up a definition of project management definition as the maintenance of direction and oversight to ensure the achievement of the set objectives in an organizational project. Lester (2014, p. 7) provides a comprehensive definition of project management by describing it as “the planning, monitoring, and control of all aspects of a project and the motivation of all those involved in it in order to achieve the project objectives within agreed criteria of time, cost, and performance”(Lester, 2014). This definition includes the important ingredients that should be included in a proper definition of project definition. Project management, like all other forms of management, requires application of all the functions of the management process which include planning, organizing, staffing, motivating, directing, and controlling (Talloo, 2007). The understanding of project management allows us to delve into project interdependencies and comprehend their impact on the PPM, and overall project management process.

2.2 The concept of project interdependency
Project interdependency is a term in project management studies used to denote the relationship between different projects in a PPM context. Simply put, project interdependency occurs where a project is dependent on another project or other several projects in the same organization (Moersidik, Arifin, Soesilo, Hartono, & Latief, 2015). There are numerous ways through which project interdependency can occur. The first is the situation in which several projects share resources. For example, two projects conducted by one team of employees are dependent on each other because they share human resources. In addition, interdependency can occur in situations in which a project uses the end result or findings of another project. For example, an innovation project to create a new product will need to use results of research projects conducted by the research department in a firm. Another way through which project interdependency may occur in which one project cannot be started until another one is started or until one deliverable or output from the other project is released. For example, the painting project of cars in a motor vehicle manufacturing plant cannot be started until the assembling projects are over. These examples suggest that project interdependency is a common occurrence in organizations because specialization and division of labor creates different departments and teams that are highly interrelated and integrated. In such multi-department and consequently PPM organizational settings, it is quite important to implement good management approaches to optimize project success (Moersidik et al. 2015).
Project interdependencies are classified into three classes through different classification systems. Griffin and Moorhead (2010) classify interdependencies as pooled interdependencies, reciprocal or sequential. In this approach, pooled interdependencies, resources from different projects are shared or used successively in different projects. In the reciprocal class of interdependencies, the interactions between the involved projects involve exchanges between the projects. Sequential project interdependencies, the third type of interdependencies according to Griifin and Moorhead (2010), involve the dependency of projects on the outcomes of other projects.Morris (2008), a project management researcher who is also the director of the Major Projects Association and an Associate Fellow of Templeton College in the Oxford Center gorManagement Studies, endorses the classification of interdependencies into pooled, reciprocal, and sequential classes. This is the most popular approach to classify project interdependencies. In their article on the construction of balanced project portfolios based on identification of the interactions between projects, Eilat, Golany and Shtub (2006) also identifies three types of project interdependencies just like Griffin and Moorhead (2010) but used different terminologies the classification. According to Eilat et al. (2006) the three classes of project interactions are resource interactions, benefit interactions, and technical dependence. In this classification, resource interactions involve the sharing of resources by different projects just like the pooled interdependencies inGriffin and Moorhead’s (2010) classification. Similarly, the benefit interaction and technical dependence interdependencies in Eilat et al.’s (2006) classification match the reciprocal and sequential interdependencies in the classification proposed by Griffin and Moorhead (2010). This demonstrates consensus in the classification of project interdependencies.
The concept of project interdependency is a crucial part of project portfolio management. According to Moersidik (2015, p. 66), a project portfolio is “a collection of various components including programs, projects, and operations managed as a group to achieve strategic objectives”. In essence, all interrelated organizational projects are organized into a portfolio that outlines their relationships in order to facilitate their management. However, it is notable that a project portfolio does not only house interdependent projects, but a set of projects in organization organized in a quantifiable manner to facilitate their prioritization, ranking, and measuring. This implies that a project portfolio is not a tool primarily designed for outlining project interdependencies, but rather a tool that is very essential for the management of such interdependencies (Moersidik et al. 2015).
The interdependencies between projects are driven by many factors. Resource utilization, organizational goals, vision, mission, project outcomes, the market, stakeholders, strategic partners, and other factors in the organizational environment can affect the interdependencies between projects and influence their worth, value, and priority (Moersidik et al. 2015). It is recommended that project interdependencies should be accurately evaluated as one of the key factors considered in the development of project portfolios. This step is of crucial importance in project management (Laslo, 2010). Notably, project interdependencies are outlined and managed through the organizational project portfolio, making it the most important instrument in the management of interdependencies in the complex and dynamic organizational environments that interdependencies occur in.
2.3 How project interdependency poses challenges to project management
One of the key factors that makes project interdependency a challenge to project management is the impact of the interdependencies on the power structure in organizations. Project interdependencies may be misconceived as simple relations between organizational projects, but they are complex interactions that involve deeper factors in organizations while they affect the core organizational strategy and competitiveness. One issue that contributes to the complexity of project interdependencies is that they are linked to power in organizations. Where there is little interdependency, there is little or no need for assertion of power in any situation (Walker, 2015). According to Walker (2015), in conditions of high project interdependency, there is usually high motivation between employees to work collaboratively if the right incentives are provided, hence there is also no great need for the assertion or power or authority. On the other hand, in situations of moderate project interdependence in which power and authority is more frequently asserted. However, Walker (2015) further notes that even in low interdependence contexts where power is not expected to be asserted, some people may use illegitimate power with the aim of getting pay-offs in the future. For example, even in cases where projects do not interact, individuals in formal positions of power in an organization may hoard resources in order to use them in future projects from which they will gain more benefits.
The relationship between power and project interdependence is that it changes the power structure in organizations(Walker, 2015). Notably, project interdependency means that one project will depend on another project, which is perhaps managed by a different project manager. Dependency is the basis of power in organizations (Walker, 2015). An example suffices to elucidate this terse observation. When project manager A possesses scarce resources required by project managers B and C in such a way such that he/she alone can control the utility of those resources, then he or she gains monopoly power that can be exercised on the project managers B and C, within the same organization. From this example analogizing the power relationships that may develop in organizations due to the disruption of the power structure by interdependencies, it is evident that such interactions can create divisions within organizations and henceforth affect the ability of employees to work together towards organizational goals. Project interdependencies can henceforth be said to have adverse impacts on relationships between employees and organizational departments by staving off power to some factions, hence creating adverse impacts in project management. From logic, when there is no collaboration between different departments or employee teams within an organization, performance is bound to be negatively affected. It is recommended that a good audit be done to diagnose the impacts of interdependence on the power structure in organizations in order to ensure proper project management in organizations (Walker, 2015).
Another factor that makes project interdependencies a key challenge in project management is communication. In Managing Project Interfaces- Key Points for Project Success, which is the second chapter of the second edition of the Project Management Handbook , Morris (2008), a professor and researcher in management , explains that proper project management requires perfect liaison in order to achieve higher rates of integration in multi-project contexts with challenging project interdependencies. The author further explains that to attain liaison, the parties involved in project management need to maintain effective communication within the organization. In addition, Morris (2008) notes that effective communication in contexts of project interdependence facilitates good working relationships, which is a prerequisite of both project and organizational success. Maintaining effective communication is usually a challenge in most organizations, and this challenge grows bigger with the presence of project interdependencies, which tend to be more divisive than cohesive if the proper management measures are not put in place (Platje, Siedel, & Wadman, 1994). Effective between-project communication in multi-project contexts is highly recommended as a measure to mitigate this challenge (Killen, Krumbeck, Kjaer, & Durant-Law, 2009).
Project interdependencies also pose challenges to project management because they involve complex decision-making processes. Verbano, Nosella, Venturini, and Turra (2009) note that in project portfolio management, project interdependencies complicate project management because there are multiple decision-makers, many strategic decisions and considerations to be made, dynamic opportunities, multiple qualitative objectives that may be conflicting and uncertainty of the risk in the projects.In essence, when projects are interdependent, decision-making is affected due to the presence of many opportunities, conflicting objectives, and many decision makers all involved actively in the process (Verbano et al. 2009). This is a challenge to project development because decision-making is stalled during conflict-resolution processes and efforts to harmonize differing ideas and opinions from different parties in the process. The process of identifying project interdependencies is itself time consuming and requires a pool of human resources in a multi-project context. Notably, portfolio managers usually have numerous projects with confounding information that may not be accurate, and hence sorting through many projects to identify interactions between them may be quite challenging (Taveska & Toropova, 2013).
Besides the general challenges faced by project managers due to project interdependencies, certain challenges are more closely related to specific classes of interdependencies. For example, in pooled interdependencies, it is likely that sharing resources will create a social dilemma about which projects are allowed to utilize the resources first or how the resources will be allocated for different projects (Bergeron, 2007, p. 1092). Notably, although projects are usually prioritized, some projects sharing the same resources may be all important or may be crucial to different departments within an organization. Due to inevitable sharing of resources in different projects, interdependency creates cases of artificial pushing of some projects into crisis in order to acquire top priority and resources for other projects (Engwall&Jebrant, 2003). Notably, this kind of situation would be a case of a company harming itself through unhealthy competition for resources between resources. The sharing of human resources also creates challenges for project management. This is because when employees are involved in too many projects, they lack opportunities for recovery between assignments and professional development, and hence there is a deterioration of morale and performance due to improper work-life balances (Zika-Viktorsson, Sundstrom, and Engwall, 2006). Anotherproject management challenge related to the sharing of resources is the sharing of knowledge. According to Tiwana (1999, p. 76), it is not impossible to make employees in an organization to use and share knowledge. In situations where projects are interdependent because they share knowledge as a resource, project managers may face key challenges in influencing the people to maintain focus on organizational goals and share knowledge to ensure success on all fronts.
Project interdependencies, whether pooled, reciprocal, or sequential, may create challenges in project development due to the need for close coordination of resource, knowledge, information, and results sharing. For reciprocal or benefit interdependencies, a challenge that project portfolio managers may face is that some managers fail to identify and exploit the synergies in projects due to exclusive focus on their projects or the unavailability of quality information (Elonen&Arto, 2003). Some project managers are usually not concerned with any other projects in a portfolio except their own, making it quite difficult to manage sequential or outcome interdependencies because they rely on the results of the other projects (Teller et al. 2012, p. 600). This discussion shows that there are many factors that make project interdependency a challenge for project management .
2.4 Theoretical conceptualizations of best project interdependency management

Though the topic of project interdependency management is inadequately studied, theorists have outlined several project portfolio management tools that can be used to manage projects in multi-project environments. The tools and methods for good project interdependency management are broadly categorized into hard and soft tools (Taveska & Toropova, 2013). The hard tools for project interdependency management include visual tools, network mapping, and optimization models. On the other hand, the soft tools for interdependency management are usually informal and include meetings, gut-feelings and intuition, diversity, and good organizational leadership (Taveska & Toropova, 2013). The best theoretical approach to project interdependency management, according to existent literature, is the system dynamics approach. This theoretical conceptualization and the interdependency management tools are discussed exhaustively below, resulting to the generation of a theoretical framework for project interdependency management.
2.5 System Dynamics Approach
According to Morris (2008, p. 407) “the most pervasive intellectual tradition to project management, whether in organization, planning, control, or other aspects, is without doubt the systems approach”. The systems perspective is an interdisciplinary theoretical approach aimed at elucidating the principles that can be applied to understand behavior in systems. The systems perspective was developed in the 1920s and 30s with an objective of analyzing how living organisms interact and control their environments. The Gestalt psychologists also suggested that the human mind organizes sensory data by processing it through systems. In this approach, a system describes a group of related elements or things. Morris (2008, p. 408 defines a system as “an assemblage of people, things, information, or other attributes, grouped together according to a particular system objective”. For example, an organization is a whole system that involves grouping of production, marketing, management, and sales departments together with other organizational functions. The different departments in an organizationare the subsystems or parts that make up the organization. Systems are properly organized and the subsets in each one of them works collaboratively with the others to make the whole. The systemic view proposes that the whole is more than the sum of its parts (Morris, 2008). This indicates that every subset in a system should not work towards its own success but should collaborate with the other systems towards the overarching goal of success for the whole system.
The systemic perspective developed by accretions in the 1950s and the decades afterwards as it was continually applied to analyze behavior in psychology, economics, sociology, human anthropology, and other disciplines in which scholars study organization and hierarchical classification (Morris, 2008). In project management, the systems approach has been very useful in analyzing the best approaches to management in multi-department or multi-project environments. In the systems approach, projects are viewed as organizations that should be successfully regulated, directed through clearly defined objectives, and managed best through “progressive development of information and multilevel project control”(Morris, 2008, p. 409).However, the systems approach still encourages the view of projects as subsets of a larger system, the organization, or more accurately, the project portfolio.In the multi-project context, the systems perspective recommends application of an “across-the-board approach” to integrate different projects and manage the interfaces (interdependencies) well(Morris, 2008). Since the whole is more than the sum of its parts, interdependent projects in an organization should be managed in such a manner that the overarching goal is not project success but organizational performance.
The system dynamics approach, which is a modification of the systems theory, has been increasingly applied in project management and is suggested to be more suitable for analyzing multi-project environments. The system dynamics approach was developed in the 1960s as a modelling technique for analysis of behavior in organizations (systems). The system dynamics approach, like the systems theory, is anchored on the principle that “the structure of a system gives rise to its behavior” (Sterman, 2000, p. 35). The system dynamics approach explains that the individual components (, subsystems, parts or subsets)in a system do not have the most complex behaviors, but the interactions between them create the complex behavior in a system. Sterman (2000) notes that in the system dynamics school of thought, feedback structures are used to describe the loops through which behavior in complex systems can be understood. Through the system dynamics theory, individuals can analyze the long-term effects of the actions taken in as system and explain how they impact the organization, the environment, the society, and the participants involved (Sterman, 2000).
It is argued that The system dynamics school of thought offers a more superior theoretical approach to project management because it allows for analysis of changing environments . Krumbeck and Killen (2010, p. 3) elucidate thatcompared to other commonly used network mapping approaches used in the business management field, “system dynamics offers the opportunity to analyze complex and dynamic problems, which allows organizations to learn and understand their internal systems through a more effective model”.Forrester (1992, p. 19) explains that system dynamics is quite useful in contexts of “nonlinearity and complexity of business structures that traditional methods of network mapping techniques cannot achieve”. In project management and project portfolio management, system dynamics modelling is important in understanding the interdependencies between different projects. This theoretical approach is very useful in project portfolio decision-making.
2.6 Use of visual tools
Visual tools are one of the hard tools that are used in analyzing project interdependency and creating recommendations on how to solve them. There are two types of visual tools have identified for use in project interdependency management. These two tools are network mapping and dependency matrices (Taveska & Toropova, 2013). Network mapping and analysis is anchored on mathematical modelingand originates from the graph theory. Brandes&Erlebach (2005, p. 7) define ‘network’ as an informal concept that describes an object composed of different elements and the interactions or connections between them. In the mathematical graphical methods, graph nodes, also known as vertices, outline the elements of a system. This approach is used to map the relations between the elements in a system such as an organization. In project management, network mapping is done through software-based tools that are used to record analyze, and display the relationships between nodes visually (Killen, Krumbeck, Kjaer, & Durant-Law, 2009). In network mapping, computerized models are used for network analysis because they provide the capability to analyze large datasets and represent it visual display in a form that relationships can be easily understood (Taveska & Toropova, 2013).
Network mapping is useful in identifying project interdependencies because it is capable of analyzing multiple projects within a project portfolio at the same time. Network mapping is often used with design structure matrices (DSM) to manage interdependencies within project portfolios (Krumbeck & Killen, 2010). This approach help determines all the key relationships in a complex project or team interactions. The network analysis approach applied in project management studies is known as social network analysis (SNA), which enables for visual presentation of the flows and interactions between different subsystems or components of an organization (Anklam, Cross, & Gulas, 2005).
The other type of visual tools used in project interdependency management is dependency matrices. This approach provides a matrix-based atechniquethat is applied to “visualize and manage project interdependencies by plotting them in rows and columns”(Taveska & Toropova, 2013, p. 18). This approach is most important in helping project and project portfolio managers to improve their understanding of theproject interactions within the portfolio (Killen & Kjaer, 2012). This approach is however criticized for its inability to be used in analyzing project interactions among many projects because it is most appropriate in analyzing pairs of projects (Dickinson, Thornton, & Graves, 2006).
2.7 Optimization models
Optimization programming models are mathematical methods used to map the interactions between different entities. Such approaches include goal programming, linear and non-linear programming, quadratic and dynamic programming (Taveska & Toropova, 2013). Optimization models are based on mathematical functions and they are used to analyze multiple constraints and objectives, resource allocations, and schedules in project interactions. Like visual tools, optimization models for interdependency management require input of large datasets and hence software tools are used to analyze them (Taveska & Toropova, 2013). These approaches are used in complex situations such as multi-project environments to map the interrelations between different projects (Blecic, Cecchini, & Pusceddu, 2008).
Taveska and Toropova (2013) used the different theoretical approaches to management of project interdependencies to develop a theoretical framework for understanding and explaining the best practices in project interdependency management. This theoretical framework, as modeled by Taveska and Toropova (2013, p. 69) is illustrated below .

Figure 1: Theoretical framework for project interdependency management (Taveska & Toropova, 2013, p. 69)
Though there is significantly a large amount of literature on project interdependencies and their management, this field is still much understudied. Rungi and Hilmola(2011) regard this topic as an emerging field because it has not been adequately studied. Rungi (2010) confirms this by stating that though project interdependency management is used by more than 91% of all firms and though it dates back to the 1960s, more research is required. In addition, Moersidik et al. (2015) note that most studies done on project interdependency management have been conducted as part of other studies. This indicates that there is a literature gap that should be covered by studies such as the present study on project interdependency in the United Arab Emirates.

Chapter 3: Methodology
3.1. Introduction
The development of a research study entails developing a detailed approach of how the research will be carried out. This chapter of the dissertation aims to offer a detailed strategic plan of how this research study will be carried out. The chapter outlined in details how primary and secondary data and information are collected in aid of achievement of the objectives of the study. This is the chapter that outlines the steps and approaches to be utilized in achieving the set goals of the study. The chapter is basically consists of data collections, research design, sampling, reliability and validity of the information and data to be used (Brandes&Erlebach, 2005 ).
The study method is structured on the theoretical knowledge and empirical literature regarding project management and efficiency. The study will also be combined with different study approaches as well as management empirical literature . The main objective of this study is to critically discuss and evaluate the concept of project interdependencies and how it is a challenge in project management and hence provide recommendations on how to improve project management in the UAE.
3.2. Research Design
There are two research approaches mostly utilized in the development of research studies. The subject study will be conducted under a qualitative design, within an epistemological perspective. There are two different approaches in performing research, which are qualitative and quantitative approach. Both research approaches have both limitations and merits depending on the nature of the research study to be carried out. Qualitative approach is mostly regarded as an explanation type of research methodology. Unlike quantitative approach methodology, this design does not use figures to draw conclusions. The qualitative approach uses explanations of existing theories and empirical evidence to develop the study. Qualitative approach is considered as a critical approach as it gives insights into the suggested problems of the study. It utilises small samples to draw conclusions. Major methods while using the qualitative approach include individual, groups and participation. Purposive type of sampling is mainly employed in this method.
However, quantitative approach is mainly used to quantify behaviours, attitudes and other defined variables. The approach uses numerical approaches to analyse and give inferences of the study. The quantitative approach utilises large population data and information. Both qualitative and quantitative approaches are used across the research field depending on the nature of the study. Some research studies are well suited with adequate data and information and the use of quantitative approach is well applicable. On the other hand, some research studies are developed to enhance related to theories and literature. Qualitative approach is the most utilised approach in this context.
Across the world development activities are developed through projects and programs. The effectiveness of any development of the project largely depends on the quality of management of the program. Project interdependencies in multi-project contexts are a key challenge for the success of any organization. This is a problem that warrants research aimed at providing recommendations on how to optimize project management through good interdependency management. Notably, the problem of project interdependency being a challenge to project management is more complex in the UAE than in other nations due to the cultural diversity that exists in the nation, which has a larger working population of expatriates than the native population in the workforce. This study is geared towards providing recommendations to this challenge in the UAE after exhaustively discussed the problem in the light of previous research on the topic.
A deductive approach will be utilized in the study. It is to critically describe when observations are used to either verify existing literature or theory with an intention of clarifying or making amendments or re-create it. On the other hand an inductive approach is when theory is extracted from observations. A deductive strategy is likely to have certain fundamentals of induction, likewise, an inductive approach will carry certain basics of deduction. The use of questionnaires as an approach in gathering of information is critical. The questionnaires are developed in deductive approaches and later enhanced to inductive measures. During the act and process of analysing gathered information, an inductive approach, is however applied. The purpose of this is to gain new insights and theories while examining the gathered data; data which is different from existing theories.
Therefore, for the sake of subject study, the author prefers to use the qualitative technique. This is justified bearing in mind the intricacies involved in developing project management approaches. One of the key factors that makes project interdependency a challenge to project management is the impact of the interdependencies on the power structure in organizations. Project interdependencies may be misconceived as simple relations between organizational projects, but they are complex interactions that involve deeper factors in organizations while they affect the core organizational strategy and competitiveness (Leedy&Ormrod, 2005).
One issue that contributes to the complexity of project interdependencies is that they are linked to power in organizations. Where there is little interdependency, there is little or no need for assertion of power in any situation (Walker, 2015). According to Walker (2015), in conditions of high project interdependency, there is usually high motivation among employees to work collaboratively if the right incentives are provided, hence there is also no great need for the assertion or power or authority. On the other hand, in situations of moderate project interdependence in which power and authority is more frequently asserted. However, Walker (2015) further notes that even in low interdependence contexts where power is not expected to be asserted, some people may use illegitimate power with the aim of getting payoffs in the future. In addition to these, qualitative method will enable to gain insights through interviews on the strategies, from the perspective of companies (Cooper, Schindler & Sun, 2006 ).
3.3. Data Collections
The processes and sources of gathering information are made possible through various methods. Data and information can be gathered from both primary and secondary sources of information. The author of the study will utilises interview to gather primary data through interviews with an appropriate project managers across industries. The author considers the data collection through interviews with major stakeholders, as a reliable information source. Respondents can be selected from a sample target market and can be interviewed to obtain pertinent empirical information, which will assist towards the research’s objective (Brick & Green, 2007).
The sources and process of gathering information are possible under several methods. Data can be gathered either from primary or secondary sources. Respondents can be selected from a sample target and can be interviewed to obtain pertinent empirical information, which will assist towards the research’s objective. The study utilises purposive sampling approach to get the right information. Managers of complex projects are considered by the study as the main source of information. The author will use interviews from managers to gather primary data (Glaser & Strauss, 2009).
Respondents are selected from target case studies and be interviewed to obtain pertinent empirical information which will assist towards the research’s objective. Although primary information from interviews through filling questionnaires will be the major source of information, secondary sources of information will be used to evaluate the gathered information. Relevant theories and concepts on the topic will be scrutinised to ensure a comprehensive study. The search for secondary information will be based on existing literature through analysis in the library. Internet source is also a rich source of secondary information and data (Kumar &Phrommathed, 2005).
3.4. Sampling
In order to carry out a research study more comprehensively and in an economical manner, a representative sample is a critical essential. The sample selected has a direct impact on the nature of the results. There are two major sampling approaches, non-probability and probability approach. In the probability sampling, every member the targeted population has an equal chance of being selected as a sample. In non-probability concepts, there is biased selection of sample to be utilized in the study. This study is developed based on non-probability approach (Taveska&Toropova, 2013.) The aim is to get the required information from the most experienced managers. The study utilised purposive sampling to enhance the level of performance of the required information. Sampling error is one of the major mistakes during a research study. It is defined as the extent by which the selected sample can be different from the actual population. The variance between the sample and the entire population is regarded as non-probability sampling (Saunders, Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill, 2011).
Although there are many projects across the UAE, the study will evaluate reports from major companies through their managers in order to meet the objective of the study . The selected companies will be critically analysed to come up with the right, managerial conclusions that affects interdependencies on the development among projects (Eilat, Golany&Shtub, 2006 ).
3.5. Validity and Reliability
The validity of a reassert study is critical. It refers to the correlation of a study with the real situation in the study. In order to ensure validity of the nature of information, the study should be developed on the right stand and approaches (Rocha, 2004). Internal validity is essential as it ensures goodness of the proposed theory by giving the right recommendation sin the development of the study. In order to achieve a high validity of the thesis the author tried to make an appropriate selection of respondents, gather and present most of the data from the interviews with respondents. Also, the background of the respondents and their view on the phenomenon studied. Finally, an interpretation with the appropriate theoretical framework that concerned the study. Reliability of the used information in the study is critical (Cooper, Schindler & Sun, 2006). It refers to the chances that even if an independent investigation is to be carried out the same results of the study will be obtained. In order to ensure the study was based on the right approaches and measures. The study is critically developed based on the right sample. The sample is critical in coming up with a reliable and valid research study.

3.6. Critiques and Ethical Considerations
Although the qualitative approach is the most recommendable, qualitative research approach chosen by the author can be criticized because of being minimal in subjective and difficulties of repetition and the problem of making the findings easy to make generalise findings in the research study (Babbie, 2015).
In order to observe all ethical considerations in the study any information that is collected for the research from the project managers is kept confidentially and would only be applied in accordance with the research aims.

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