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  • Project and communication management - Prof. Antonio Prencipe - a.a. 2016/2017

    Antonio Prencipe. Phd in Accounting, Management and Finance, Lecturer teaching Project and Communication Management, Faculty of Communication Sciences, University of Teramo. Member of Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA) – young section; Head of Accounting, Management & Control area of the spin-off of the University of Teramo CISREM (Centro Internazionale Studi e Ricerche Economico-Manageriali) S.r.l.; Member of the board of directors of of the spin-off of the University of Teramo CISREM (Centro Internazionale Studi e Ricerche Economico-Manageriali) S.r.l.; Winner of PhD - XXIX cycle – in Accounting, Business and Finance (first in the merit ranking), University of “G. d’Annunzio” Chieti-Pescara/University of Teramo, (Italy).
     

    INFO ABOUT THE COURSE


    OBJECTIVES OF THE COURSE

    Projects and project management are terms increasingly common in advanced organizational contexts. In fact, a project management approach becomes necessary in organizational contexts and marketplaces characterized by a high degree of complexity and rapid change. The course aims to transmit  to the student specialized knowledge about planning, organization, start-up, management, monitoring and project evaluation, together  with the understanding of the most used and qualified methods in the field of project management. In addition, the student will acquire knowledge and skills about specific aspects of communication management in projects, having the opportunity to understand the complexity of the project communication processes - internal and external – jointly with the advanced approaches in order to achieve effective, efficient and flexible communication. At the end of the course, the student will have acquired skills and capabilities for the analysis and resolution of the most usual management issues in projects, jointly with the management of their information-communicative aspects. In particular, the student will have the ability to evaluate project decisions, to determine the performance of the project during its implementation and apply suitable tools and methods for project communication.

    • Knowledge and understanding: The course aims to transmit to the student knowledge about planning, organization, start-up, management, monitoring and evaluation of projects, together with the understanding of the most used methods in the field of project management . In addition, the student will acquire knowledge and skills about specific aspects of communication management in projects, having the opportunity to understand the complexity of the project communication processes - internal and external - and of the means to achieve effective efficient and flexible communication.
    • Applying knowledge and understanding: At the end of the course, the student will have acquired knowledge and methodologies for the analysis and resolution of project management issues and their information-communicative aspects. In particular, he will have the ability to evaluate project decisions to be taken, to determine the performance of the project during its implementation and apply suitable tools and methods for the project communication, both internal and external, in order to manage the complexity of information processes characterizing projects.
    • Making judgements: The student, through the course, will have acquired the typical methodological approach of project management, with a focus on communication processes. Therefore, he will be able to deal with the management of projects in a systematic and flexible way, formulating and taking decisions even in relation to their nature, the risks associated with them and the human aspects influencing their evolution. In addition, he will be able to manage and effectively organize the project team, synchronizing the information process, as well as the project and external stakeholders, with the typical autonomy of a project manager in the leadership of projects.
    • Communication: The student will have the ability to communicate competitively and with good language skills, in accordance with the peculiarities of project management, even in contexts that require a medium to high specialization. In particular, the student at the end of the course will have acquired soft skills suitable for the effective management of the mechanisms and processes that characterize communication in projects, even complex ones, such as the preparation and exchange of models and documents with the project team and project stakeholders, the organization and management of meetings and project reviews. In addition, the student will properly prepare reports about the project management activities and critically illustrate the project results.
    • Learning skills: The student, at the end of the course, will have acquired the ability to understand and study the evolutionary dynamics that qualify the project management and the associated communication processes, both internal and external. The student will acquire specific skills for managing independently critical aspects concerning the project management. In addition, it will be able to learn the specifics of each context in which the project is being implemented, from an organizational, managerial and communication view.


    PREREQUISITE AND PREPARATORY
    • Prerequisite: No prerequisites are provided. Prior to attending classes, the student must have acquired a basic knowledge of business economics, with particular reference to the management, organization and corporate communication aspects.
    • Preparatory: None


    Unit 1 – Project and Project Management: introductive elements, organization strategy and project selection (Chapters 1-2)

    Unit 2 –Structure, Culture, Communication and Project Definition in Project Organization(Chapters 3-4)

    Unit 3 – Time and Costs in Project Management (Chapter 5)

    Unit 4–Planning Project Management and Risk Management(Chapters6-7)

    Unit 5–Project scheduling, Project duration and Project communication plan (Chapters8-9)

    Unit 6 – Project Manager, Project Team and Project Communication: managerial approaches (Chapters10-11-12)

    Unit 7–Project progress and Project Performance Assessment (Chapters 13)

    Unit 8–Project closure: typologies, post-implementation evaluation and retrospectives (Chapter 14)

    Unit 9 - International Projects and Project Oversight (Chapters 15-16)

    Unit 10 - Agile Project Management and career paths: managerial approaches and implications (Chapters 17-18)

    Unit 11 - Communication Project Management: business game e case history

    Unit 12 – Hard and Soft Models in Project Management: Methodological Analysis and practical exercises


    WEEKLY LESSONS


    • Tuesday hour 13.30 - 15.30 - classroom 9
    • Wednesday hour 13.30 - 15.30 - classroom 9
    • Thursday hour 13.30 - 15.30 - classroom 9

    COURSE BOOKS 


    • Erik W. Larson, Clifford F. Gray (2011),Project Management: The Managerial Process, 5/e. The McGraw-Hill/Irwin series. ISBN: 978-0-07-340334-2.



    RESEARCH MATERIAL

    Students will have to perform teamwork in order to put into practice the concepts learned during the course, along with the vision and the critical analysis of audiovisual documentaries and other films on the topic concerning each Teaching Unit. In addition, students will have the opportunity to deepen the critical study of papers and other important national and international scientific journals readings. In this regard, the research material of every Unit will be available on the platform in the dedicated section.

    INTERMEDIATE TESTS AND EVALUATION 


    During the course are planned Self-Assessment Tests and Interim Tests with regard to each learning Unit in order to assess the knowledge gained by the student over the learning progress. The exercises, teamwork and other educational activities contribute to the training of the final overall assessment of the student. At the end of the course is planned a final and oral assessment.

  • Unit 1

    There are powerful environmental forces contributing to the rapid expansion of project management approaches to business problems and opportunities. A project is defined as non routine, one-time effort limited by time, resources, and performance specifications designed to meet customer needs. One of the distinguishing characteristics of project management is that it has both a beginning and an end and typically consists of four phases: defining, planning, executing, and closing. In this regard, Unit 1 explores, in the first part, the definition of project, the importance of project management and the use of an integrated approach in its analysis and implementation. In the second part, Unit 1 explores the strategic management process of project management, the scenario planning, the project portfolio management system, as well as the management of the portfolio system.

    Keywords: Project; Project management; Integrated approach; Project Portfolio Management.


  • Unit 2

    Two major characteristics of the parent organization affect the implementation and completion of projects. The first is the formal structure of the organization and how it chooses to organize and manage projects, the second is the concept of organizational culture. Furthermore, it is to note that the project scope definition, priorities, and breakdown structure are the keys to nearly every aspect of managing the project. In this regard Unit 2 explores, in the first part, the project management structures, the role of organizational culture in project, as well as the implications of organizational culture for organizing projects. In the second part, Unit 2, explores the project scope, the project priorities, the Work Breakdown Structure, the responsibility matrices, as well as the project communication plan..

    Keywords: Project Communication Plan; Responsibility Matrices; Work Breakdown Structure; Organizational Culture; Project Scope 


  • Unit 3

    Quality time and cost estimates are the bedrock of project control. Past experience is the best starting point for these estimates. The quality of estimates is influenced by other factors such as people, technology, and downtimes. The key for getting estimates that represent realistic average times and costs is to have an organization culture that allows errors in estimates without incriminations. In this regard, Unit 3 explores the factors influencing the quality of estimates, the estimating guidelines for times, costs, and resources, the top-down versus bottom-up estimating, the methods for estimating project times and costs, as well as types of costs in projects.

    Keywords: Quality of Estimates; Project Resources; Project Costs; Project Times; Top-Down Estimating; Bottom-Up Estimating.

  • Unit 4

    Many project managers feel the project network is their most valuable exercise and planning document. Project networks sequence and time-phase the project work, resources, and budgets. Furthermore, it is to note that the essence of project management is risk management. Project selection systems try to reduce the likelihood that projects will not contribute to the mission of the firm. In this regard, Unit 4 explores, in the first part, the development of the project network, the construction of a project network, the Activity-on-Node (AON) fundamentals, as well as the network computation process. In the second part, Unit 4, explores the risk management process, the contingency planning, the contingency funding and time buffers, as well as the change control management.


    Keywords:  Change Control Management; Contingency Planning; Risk Management Process; Activity-On-Node; Project Network.

  • Unit 5

    Usage and availability of resources are major problem areas for project managers. Attention to these areas in developing a project schedule can point out resource bottlenecks before the project begins. Project managers should understand the ramifications of failing to schedule resources. Furthermore, it is to note that the need for reducing the project duration occurs for many reasons such as imposed duration dates, time-to-market considerations, incentive contracts, key resource needs, high overhead costs, or simply unforeseen delays. In this regard, Unit 5 explores, in the first part, the resource scheduling problem, the types of resource constraints, the resource allocation methods, as well as the multi project resource schedules. In the second part, Unit 5 explores the rationale for reducing project duration, the options for accelerating project completion, as well as the project cost–duration graph.

    Keywords: Project Completion; Project Cost–Duration Graph; Project Duration; Resource Allocation; Resource Scheduling. 

  • Unit 6

    To be successful, project managers must build a cooperative network among a diverse set of allies. They begin by identifying who the key stakeholders on a project are, followed by a diagnosis of the nature of the relationships, and the basis for exercising influence. Furthermore, it is to highlight that Project managers often work in unsuitable conditions to develop a cohesive team committed to working together and completing the project to the best of their abilities. In this regard, Unit 6 explores, in the first part, the concepts of managing versus leading a project, the management of project stakeholders, the social network building, the qualities of an effective project manager, as well as the team development model in project. In the second part, Unit 6 explores the outsourcing of project work, the role and approaches of negotiating, as well as the management of customer relations.

    Keywords: Project Team; Project Manager; Social Network; Project Leadership; Project Stakeholders.

  • Unit 7

    The best information system does not result in good control. Control requires on behalf of the project manager to use information to steer the project through rough waters. Control and Gantt charts are useful vehicles for monitoring time performance. The schedule system allows the manager to have a positive influence on cost and schedule in a timely manner. In this regard, Unit 7 explores the structure of a project monitoring information system, the project control process, the monitoring time performance, the development of an earned value cost/schedule system, as well as the forecast of the final project cost.

    Keywords: Schedule System; Earned Value Cost; Time Performance; Project Control Process; Project Monitoring Information System.

  • Unit 8

    The goals of project closure are to complete the project and to improve performance of future projects. Implementing closure and review has three major closure deliverables: wrap-up, evaluation, and retrospectives. Wrap-up closure activities include delivering the final project deliverable, closing accounts, finding new opportunities for project staff, closing facilities, and creating the final report. Project evaluation verifies and documents project performance. The retrospectives methodology promises lessons learned are identified and used. In this regard, Unit 8 explores the types of project closure, the wrap-up closure activities, the post-implementation evaluation, as well as an overview of the project closeout checklist.

    Keywords:  Project Closure; Wrap-Up Closure Activities; Post-Implementation Evaluation.


  • Unit 9

    The number of international projects continues to increase, and nothing on the horizon suggests things will change in the new millennium. More and more project managers will be needed to implement international projects. Furthermore, it is to remark the relevance of oversight practices, which are directed to improving the way the organization manages all projects. Oversight or governance in multi project organizations supports the trend of integration over the last three decades. In this regard, Unit 9 explores, in the first part, the environmental factors influencing project management, the project site selection, the cross-cultural issues in projects, the selection and training for international projects. In the second part, Unit 9 explores the project oversight and the organization of project management in the long run.

    Keywords: Environmental Factors; Project Site; International Projects; Project Oversight.

  • Unit 10

    Agile project management has emerged as a response to the challenges of managing projects with loosely defined scopes and high levels of uncertainty. Agile relies on an iterative development process in which the scope of the project evolves over time. Development teams create feature; driven working products at the end of each development cycle. Active customer involvement is used to guide this process. Agile PM is still evolving. While much of the attention in this chapter has been devoted to software development, Agile PM is being successfully applied to a wide range of unpredictable projects. In this regard, Unit 10 explores the traditional methods versus agile ones in project management, career paths, temporary assignments, as well as professional training and certification in project management.

    Keywords: Agile Project Management;  Career Paths;  Temporary Assignments;  Iterative Incremental Development; CAPM;  PMP.                                                                                                                                                                                        

  • Unit 11

    The aim of the Unit 11 is to understand with an interactive way the aspects concerning the organization, planning and controlling of project management processes within companies. These activities will be realized through the active involvement of the student in the different operations composing project management and its effectiveness communication within and outside the organization. In particular, within the Unit it will be organized business game, discussion of case histories, along with in-depth understanding of thematic documentaries in project area, in order to discharge into practice theories learned in previous Units and enrich them with some basic fundamental project management skills.

    Keywords: Learning by doing; Business game; Case histories;  Project communication management.


  • Unit 12

    The aim of Unit 12 is to introduce the analysis of hard and soft variables within the life cycle of the Project Management. In particular, the Unit focuses, in the first part, on the analysis and evaluation of the Crawford-Pollack model, in order to understand the aspects and defining concepts, together with the critical dimensions that make it up. Finally, some concluding remarks of the model are discussed in order to better understand its usefulness and validity. In the second part, Unit 12 focuses on the Turner-Cochrane model. In detail, it explores the concepts relating to the analysis and classification of project typologies identified by the model, namely: engineering projects, projects of development of new products, of systems and research projects development projects. In the third part, Unit 12 focuses on the Yeo model. In detail, it explores the concepts and the fundamentals of the model, jointly with a systematically investigation of the novelty-familiar variables and uncertainty-ambiguity.


    Keywords: Hard variables; Soft variables; Crawford-Pollack model; Turner-Cochrane model; Yeo model.