Rethinking Project Practice: Emerging Insights From a Series of Practitioner Books

Darren Dalcher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
168 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to identify the major trends and contributions published in the
Advances in Project Management book series and place them in the context of the findings and outputs
from the Rethinking Project Management Network. A key aim is to address the concerns of project
practitioners and explore the alternatives to the assumed linear rationality of project thinking. The
paper further offers a guided catalogue to some of the key ideas, concepts and approaches offered to
practitioners through the series.
Design/methodology/approach – This is a conceptual review paper that reflects on the main areas
covered in a book series aimed at improving modern project practice and explores the implications on
practice, knowledge and the relationship between research and practice. The topics are addressed
through the prism of the Rethinking Project Management Network findings.
Findings – The paper explores new advances in project management practice aligning them with key
trends and perspectives identified as part of the Rethinking Project Management initiative. It further
delineates new areas of expertise augmenting those mentioned in the disciplinary canons of knowledge.
Research limitations/implications – The paper offers a new understanding of how knowledge is
created in, for and by practice. Improving the relationship between theory and practice may demand a
new appreciation of the role of practitioners and the value of their reflection in context.
Practical implications – The primary implication is to explore the new directions and perspectives
covered by authors in the Advances in Project Management series, and identify main areas and topics that
feature in the emerging discourse about project management practice. In addition, new conceptualisations
of the role of practitioners in making sense of project realities are offered and considered.
Originality/value – New areas of interest and activity are identified and examined, offering
a catalogue of new writing and perspectives in project practice. Reflection on the relationship
between research and practice encourages fresh thinking about the crucial role of practitioner
knowledge and reflection.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)798-821
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Journal of Managing Projects in Business
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2016


  • practice
  • practitioner
  • reflective practitioner
  • theory-practice gap
  • stakehoders
  • theory
  • success
  • reflective practice
  • rethinking project management
  • project management theory
  • modern project management


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