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Original Research: Project Management within the Information Systems Discipline

Conceptualising a multidimensional model of information communication and technology project complexity

Nazeer Joseph

SA Journal of Information Management; Vol 19, No 1 (2017), 14 pages. doi: 10.4102/sajim.v19i1.825

Submitted: 14 December 2016
Published:  02 November 2017


Background: Information communication and technology (ICT) projects are different from other projects, such as construction, and require a new perspective to determine their true nature. The lacklustre state of ICT projects has plagued researchers and practitioners for decades as they are yet to understand why ICT projects do not perform. Literature places significant emphasis on success criteria and success factors for determining project success, but this is a unilateral view as the level of complexity involved is underestimated. ICT projects, however, are multifaceted as there are a number of dimensions that influence the management and outcome of a project.

Objectives: This article aimed to illuminate how the dimensions are interdependent and interconnected through the construction of a conceptual model of ICT project complexity.

Methods: Content analysis was used to identify and understand the various dimensions and facilitated construction of the model.

Results: The article identified five dimensions that affect ICT projects, viz. project success, project lifecycle, project complexity, project types and project methods. Each dimension was analysed to understand the key constructs and elements that need to be considered. The dimensions were mapped in a multidimensional model.

Conclusion: The multidimensional model of ICT project complexity can be used by ICT project managers to more effectively manage projects as they are provided with a greater understanding of ICT project influences.

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Author affiliations

Nazeer Joseph, Department of Applied Information Systems, University of Johannesburg, South Africa


ICT project management; project complexity; project success


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ISSN: 2078-1865 (print) | ISSN: 1560-683X (online)

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