"It's all up here": adaptation and improvisation within the modern project
Leybourne, Stephen A.
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Citation (published version)Stephen A. Leybourne. 2017. ""It's all up here": adaptation and improvisation within the modern project." International Journal of Project Organisation and Management, v. 9, issue 3, pp. 217 - 217.
This paper considers organisational improvisation, and in particular, adaptation as a specific component of improvisational work(Miner et al., 2001), and how it may assist in resolving or assisting with some of the challenges surrounding recent shifts in our understanding of project-based management. Examples focus on the use of adaptation to cope with ambiguity and uncertainty, caused by execution in problematic and turbulent organisational environments. The literature on improvisation suggests that adapting previously successful interventions reduces and manages the risk of improvising by engaging with the 'adaptation component of organisational improvisation. This practice assists in ensuring that the additional risk of completely novel activity is avoided. This paper explores adaptation within the project domain, and also unpicks the rhetoric from the reality of adaptation within projects, confirming its benefits, setting out the circumstances where experience informs the practice, and offering readily usable and applicable insights.