2017 APM Research Fund studies announced

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APM is pleased to announce the following research studies have been selected to receive the backing and support of APM’s Research Fund which is now in its second year.

The APM Research Fund supports project management research through funding, external validation, dissemination and promotional assistance with the potential for feedback and mentorship.

This year APM received 12 applications all of which went through intense scrutiny by APM’s Research Advisory Group (RAG) to decide on the final five studies which are now ready to commence.

Daniel Nicholls, APM research manager commented: “We are delighted to launch these five studies as part of the APM Research Fund and hope they will generate interesting insight and discussion over the next year or so.  We are keen for individuals and organisations to get involved in each of the studies where possible so will be trying to focus on each in turn but please participate to ensure these studies are informed as possible.  The Research Fund forms an important part of the APM Research programme and we look forward to launching the next call for funding in autumn 2017.”

The studies that will now commence are:
  • Project Leadership Professor Michael Bourne, Professor of Business Performance at Cranfield University and Sarah Coleman, Director at Business Evolution Ltd.

The research aims to identify key project leadership competencies whilst addressing one of the areas currently under investigation by the APM Corporate Members Leadership Group (CMLG) into non-technical competencies.  Collaborating with participating organisations the research team will identify ‘good project leadership competencies’: what these are in terms of behaviours, preferences and traits; what helps to support these (and indeed, what doesn’t); and to craft strategies to improve the situation.

This research aims to advance understandings of individual, team and organisation-wide leadership capabilities for successfully delivering transformation projects, and ways in which they can be fostered.  The research intends to provide advanced understandings of: approaches to leading transformation; challenges/opportunities for leadership and ways to effectively respond to them; and ways to examine and strengthen individual, team and organisational leadership capabilities. This study is linked to the Infrastructure and Project Authority’s Project X research initiative – theme E on capability, leadership and knowledge management.

The study builds on the work used to establish the new Systems Thinking SIG as they seek to identify the range of activities classified as systems thinking and how these are seen to add value to projects. The study aims to produce a guide on how to apply systems thinking in projects and to understand whether systems thinking is a critical success factor in complex projects.

The study seeks to identify how decision-makers actually make decisions in the complex situations they encounter during a project’s life.  The purpose is to empower project decision-makers to critically assess their own intentions, thinking and perceptions of the decision.

This research will adopt a narrative approach to explore the governance interface in the project organising where Owners & Operators and Projects & Programmes overlap. It will do this by exploring the macro-level narratives of governance as formalised at industry and organisational levels so at investment or portfolio levels and from the micro-level narratives of governance as mobilised by managers in Owners & Operators organisations in day-to-day project perspective.

The outputs from the 2016 Research Fund studies will soon be published so why not participate in one of the studies? Simply click through to the webpage on each study for more information around how you can get involved.

The next call for funding for the APM Research Fund is likely to be in October 2017 with applicants given until mid-January 2018 to make their submissions. For information around the APM Research Fund in the interim please contact research@apm.org.uk.


Posted on 19th Jul 2017
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