The role of project director and its needed competencies - A study on large infrastructure projects in Sweden

Examensarbete för masterexamen

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Type: Examensarbete för masterexamen
Master Thesis
Title: The role of project director and its needed competencies - A study on large infrastructure projects in Sweden
Abstract: The Swedish construction industry faces a current construction boom with several large infrastructure projects being executed, especially in the urban areas around the larger cities. There is an on-going trend where the projects become larger and larger, which also complies with international trends where the projects are even larger. Earlier research describes site managers as problem-solvers that muddle through their working-tasks reactively, and consider administration as an extra workload that impedes their possibility to lead the production. The role of the project director can be described as a role that mainly focuses on work with strategic management, coordination and much administration, and due to large financial risks, the project director needs a proactively way of working. Through a qualitative research, the authors have conducted an abductive literature review of construction project characteristics, organizational structures, project management, and the role of the site manager. Furthermore, an interview study was conducted with seven project directors representing the contractor, and two project director representatives from the Swedish Transport Administration. The study aimed to investigate and discuss the possibility to appoint a project director without the traditional career path, and thereby not having the traditional production-related working life experience. The study indicated that there are differences in how project directors perceive themselves and their working tasks compared to the traditional site manager. By natural causes, there are great similarities since the two professions are different sides of the same coin. However, a project director should, and must emphasize strategic and organization management in greater extent than a traditional site manager. The study showed that there is a possibility to appoint a project director without the traditional background, although it is considered to be a necessity to have a general understanding and knowledge about the processes in the construction industry. An appointment of a "non-traditional" project director will however lead to some adjustments of the organization structure, and would require a project organization with high degree of knowledge and experience in other key roles, as well as decentralized decision-making.
Keywords: Samhällsbyggnadsteknik;Civil Engineering
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: Chalmers tekniska högskola / Institutionen för bygg- och miljöteknik
Chalmers University of Technology / Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Series/Report no.: Examensarbete - Institutionen för bygg- och miljöteknik, Chalmers tekniska högskola : BOMX02-17-58
Collection:Examensarbeten för masterexamen // Master Theses

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