University of Oulu

Saukko, L., Aaltonen, K., Haapasalo, H. (2019) Inter-organisational project network integration: a systematic literature review. International Journal of Project Organisation and Management, 11 (4), 287-310. doi:

Inter-organisational project network integration : a systematic literature review

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Author: Saukko, Laura1; Aaltonen, Kirsi1; Haapasalo, Harri1
Organizations: 1Industrial Engineering and Management, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4610, FIN-90014 University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.6 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Inderscience, 2019
Publish Date: 2020-12-19


The purpose of this paper is to achieve an understanding of integration in inter-organisational project networks. This paper encapsulates scattered research streams concentrating on integration and adds to the perspectives of integration studies towards inter-organisational project network landscapes. The adopted research method is a systematic literature review through a qualitative content analysis, which provides a conceptual framework on integration in project networks. The framework includes eight concepts of integration in project networks. The developed framework improves understanding of how academic literature examines and comprehends integration in inter-organisational project networks. Furthermore, this paper shows that the research area is emerging and has until now focused mainly on construction and infrastructure sectors in the project management literature. The findings highlight consistent streams of discussion, gaps in knowledge, and propose a need for further research. There are a limited number of efforts towards creating a comprehensive understanding of how integration is presented and takes place in practice in complex project networks. This paper points out collaborative practices as the centre of academic attention. In addition, it reveals a scarce attention on exhaustive themes such as integration governance. This study creates a framework and common language for further use for academics and practitioners.

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Series: International journal of project organisation and management
ISSN: 1740-2891
ISSN-E: 1740-2905
ISSN-L: 1740-2891
Volume: 11
Issue: 4
Pages: 287 - 310
DOI: 10.1504/IJPOM.2019.104180
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 222 Other engineering and technologies
Copyright information: © 2019 Inderscience Publishers. The final authenticated version is available online at