University of Oulu

Ali, F. and Haapasalo, H. (2023), "Development levels of stakeholder relationships in collaborative projects: challenges and preconditions", International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, Vol. 16 No. 8, pp. 58-76.

Development levels of stakeholder relationships in collaborative projects : challenges and preconditions

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Author: Ali, Farooq1; Haapasalo, Harri1
Organizations: 1Department of Industrial Engineering and Management, Faculty of Technology, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Emerald, 2023
Publish Date: 2023-05-10


Purpose: This article aims to address the confusion related to the meanings of interorganisational cooperation, control, coordination and collaboration in collaborative projects by developing a conceptual framework. From this, the authors aim to describe the links among these concepts in terms of development levels of stakeholder relationships. In addition, the authors aim to identify challenges and preconditions in relation to developing relationships at different levels.

Design/methodology/approach: The authors have adopted the directed approach of qualitative content analysis method to validate and extend the conceptual framework of this study. The context of this study is a large hospital construction project located in northern Finland.

Findings: The findings of this study suggest that collaboration is a multilevel process of active engagement of multiple stakeholders. These stakeholders must have a high degree of shared understanding in terms of cooperation, control and coordination to achieve the mutually desired outcomes. This study also identifies the challenges that project stakeholders could face in developing collaborative relationships and propose preconditions for the same.

Practical implications: This study provides a better understanding for project managers to manage interorganisational collaborative construction projects successfully. The outcome of this research would be beneficial to project management team to deliver dispute-free construction projects.

Originality/value: Existing practical research on the development of relationships at different levels in collaborative construction projects is limited. This study offers a framework for the same which is validated in a real-life project.

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Series: International journal of managing projects in business
ISSN: 1753-8378
ISSN-E: 1753-8386
ISSN-L: 1753-8378
Volume: 16
Issue: 8
Pages: 58 - 76
DOI: 10.1108/IJMPB-03-2022-0066
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 512 Business and management
Copyright information: © Farooq Ali and Harri Haapasalo. Published by Emerald Publishing Limited. This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial and non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors. The full terms of this licence may be seen at