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A Harrisburg University of Science and Technology project management professor’s research on the relationship between project management competencies and project complexity upon project success appears in a new journal.

Dr. John Clark’s article, “Managing the Edge of Chaos,” appears in Volume 1 of Beyond the Project Horizon: Journal of the Center for Project Management Innovation.  The article is available at:

Clark’s literature review indicates that project complexity is a primary source of project failure.   He explained that a gap exists concerning how project management competencies and project complexity predict project success, so the research focused on to what extent do project management competencies predict project success and to what extent does project complexity predict project success.

“The theory of complexity explains that the relationship between project management competencies and project success is influenced by project complexity,” says Clark.   For the study, he examined project management professional certified project managers, who operated in the United States of America, and who completed a project within the last six months from the time of this research.

Research results showed that project management competencies positively predict project success. Additionally, the study showed that results were inconclusive concerning whether project complexity predicts project success. Furthermore, the predictive model involving project management competencies and project complexity upon project success is a good model. The predictive model offers insight into managing project complexity.

“Using project management competencies, project managers can establish an environment built on collaboration and knowledge-sharing. Using collaboration and knowledge-sharing, project managers can seize creativity and ingenuity, available in complex systems through interdependence, to influence project success,” says Clark.


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