University of Oulu

Lappi, T., Aaltonen, K. and Kujala, J. (2019), "The birth of an ICT project alliance", International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, Vol. 12 No. 2, pp. 325-355.

The birth of an ICT project alliance

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Author: Lappi, Teemu1; Aaltonen, Kirsi1; Kujala, Jaakko2
Organizations: 1Department of Industrial Engineering and Management, Oulun Yliopisto Teknillinen Tiedekunta, Oulu, Finland
2University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.4 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Emerald, 2019
Publish Date: 2019-08-14


Purpose: ICT projects, especially in the public sector, can have a substantial impact on society but are challenging due to organizational and technological complexities and uncertainties. Collaborative and cooperative project delivery models, namely, the project alliance method, can mitigate such challenges, but, thus far, have not been utilized in information and communication technology (ICT) projects. The purpose of this paper is to explore and understand the cross-field transfer process through which the project alliance model was applied to the ICT field from the construction sector.

Design/methodology/approach: An inductive case study of the ICT project alliance early stages was performed. Data were collected from the first known ICT alliance project, conducted in the context of the Finnish public sector digitalization.

Findings: The findings show how the activities of institutional entrepreneurs impact the cross-field transfer process during the ICT project alliance’s early stages. Furthermore, the results illustrate the characteristics of an ICT project alliance and compare those with more traditional project alliances.

Originality/value: The topic and results of the study are original and contribute to institutional research by identifying and studying the micro-level processes associated with the cross-field transfer process. The study also builds an initial understanding of a new method of organizing ICT projects and contributes to the project alliance literature. The managerial implications of the findings allow project practitioners to understand the emerging characteristics of an ICT project alliance, and enable managers in the ICT field to adjust and prepare their own organizations and processes for the application of the project alliance model.

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Series: International journal of managing projects in business
ISSN: 1753-8378
ISSN-E: 1753-8386
ISSN-L: 1753-8378
Volume: 12
Issue: 2
Pages: 325 - 355
DOI: 10.1108/IJMPB-02-2018-0036
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 222 Other engineering and technologies
Copyright information: © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited. This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Lappi, T., Aaltonen, K. and Kujala, J. (2019), "The birth of an ICT project alliance", International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, Vol. 12 No. 2, pp. 325-355, which has been published in final form at