History of Project Management in Twelve Periods Book Report

Pages: 24 (9431 words)  ·  Style: MLA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 14  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Doctorate  ·  Topic: Business - Management

¶ … history of project management in twelve periods of Western history. This involved the exploration of six topic areas that would provide insight into the history and evolution of project management. These included the following areas: cultural environment; scientific environment; general management; construction technology and the Master Builder Tradition

The research into these areas led to the process of placing contemporary project management in its historical perspective and comparing this perspective to the modern state of this science. This process also led to a number of recommendations that were a central outcome of the study. Among these was the recommendation that further research should be undertaken into the architectural principles of each historical period, with particular emphasis on the impact of the economic environment on each period. In essence this process led to the conclusion that the history of project management is more than just about the history of projects or the history of managing projects. It is about understanding the behavior of project leaders in history and the choices they made when applying areas of expertise to project activities.

2. Briefly describe the differences between the qualitative and quantitative approachesDownload full Download Microsoft Word File
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TOPIC: Book Report on History of Project Management in Twelve Periods Assignment

Quantitative methodologies tend to emphasize measurement and statistics and are usually associated with precise mathematical and statistical extrapolations from research data. Quantitative methodologies have been defined as promoting research that is aimed at "…determining the relationship between one thing (an independent variable) and another (a dependent or outcome variable) in a population" (Hopkins). Quantitative research centers on quantifying relationships between variables and expressing relationships between these variables in terms of statistical measurement, such as correlations, relative frequencies, or differences between means. (Hopkins) in my research project I also note that quantitative methods were seen as advancement in building and scientific expertise, especially in the Muslim world. (Durant 162 -- 86)

On the other hand a common definition of qualitative research is " & #8230;any kind of research that produces findings not arrived at by means of statistical procedures or other means of quantification" (Strauss and Corbin, 1990, p. 17).

In the first instance it is important to understand that the quantitative research methods were inherited, as it were, by the social sciences from the scientific research paradigm. Science and scientific methodologies have for years tended to dominate the academic and research community at universities and research institutions and has been, until fairly recently, the accepted mode of research because of its claim to objectivity and verifiability. However, as Glazer ( 2000) states, "There is a growing tendency & #8230;to favor more qualitative research methods. (Glazer, 2000, p. 3).

There has also been increasing recognition of the importance and place of quantitative approaches and methodologies. This approach is used extensively in the human sciences. Qualitative methodologies were developed in order to cater for certain areas and kinds of research, particularly in the humanities, where quantitative methods were not appropriate and could not deal with more complex and variable data input. In other words, qualitative methodologies are more flexible and open to the inclusion of multiple and dynamic variables and factors from the research data. Vincent Pouliot (2007) has argued that the objectivist or "experience-distant" form of knowledge should be supported by subjective (experience-near) knowledge. (POULIOT, 2007, p. 359)

Many researchers have found that in many instances using the quantitative method in investigating subject areas or demographics where there were a large number of interlinked and interdependent variables was inadequate for dealing with the wide range of nuances and complexities of subjective views and analysis. Therefore, the qualitative research methods were developed to deal with research in all fields, particularly in the social sciences and with regard to cultural and subjective data . (Myers)

3. Explain how research produces scientific knowledge

Research is in essence the process that facilitates scientific knowledge. However, in order to answer this question one firstly has to establish what is meant by scientific knowledge. The word science comes from the Latin "scientia" which means knowledge. A definition which helps one to establish the precise meaning of scientific knowledge is; "Science refers to a system of acquiring knowledge. This system uses observation and experimentation to describe and explain natural phenomena. The term science also refers to the organized body of knowledge people have gained using that system." ( Science Definition)

In other words, research is the process by which the information is gathered in order to be subjected to the scientific process of analysis -- which in turn leads to testing and verification. The aim of scientific knowledge is therefore to build a system of reliable knowledge and insight about the universe, which can be logically and rationally explained.

The term scientific knowledge is attributed to some facts and principles that are acquired through the long process of inquiry and investigation and research. The investigation & #8230; goes through various aspects to come to a conclusion and the aspects include all the laws, theories, concepts and models. The definition can be expressed in other way also and you can say that it is a kind of knowledge that is acquired by the systematic study and is organized in accordance with some general principles." (What Is Scientific Knowledge?)

The spirit of research and scientific knowledge has been adhered to in my study. This is evidenced by the emphasis on research to "… increase the precision and value of both historical and contemporary scientific understandings of project management." (PROJECT Management in the MEDIEVAL PERIOD, p.12)

4. Differentiate between research methodology as opposed to research methods and techniques.

A research methodology is a general process that encompasses a certain set of ideals and values that are directed towards certain results. Research methods and techniques are therefore the practical foundations for the application of a certain methodology that is directed towards defined scientific ends. In other words, research methods and techniques are the practical aspects that are intended to meet the needs and requirements of that particular methodology. A good example would be the different research methods and techniques that suit a qualitative rather than a quantitative methodology, such as case studies as opposed to statistics.

The Research Topic, Project Title and Research Problem:

1. List four typical examples of research topics appropriate to your field of study

1. 1. Architectural issues relating to the Medieval Period.

1.2. The development of selected architectural innovations during the Early Renaissance

1.3. The influence of social and economic factors on early European Project Management

1.4. A Comparison of factors affecting the development of organized building and project development: Medieval and Late Renaissance.

2. Illustrate some basic purpose of doing research by means of an example

Research is a logical and systematic search for new and useful information on a particular topic. It is an investigation intending to find solutions to scientific and social problems through objective and systematic analysis. It is also a "... systematic inquiry to describe, explain, predict and control the observed phenomenon." (Rajasekar S. et al. 2006) as such, research includes inductive and deductive methods to achieve this end. Inductive research methods "... analyze the observed phenomenon and identify the general principles, structures, or processes underlying the phenomenon observed." (What is Research?) on the other hand deductive methods "…verify the hypothesized principles through observations. (What is Research?)

Therefore, the basic purposes of research are different in terms of these two methods: one is intended to develop explanations, while the other is intended to examine and test the validity of the explanation

This leads to different types of research, such as basic and applied research. Basic research is intended to test various theories and hypotheses. An example of this type of research is the exploration of the theory that development in any field is evolutionary in nature -- which implies a series of related hypotheses that can be tested against the available data sources.

3. Explain the importance of identifying the purpose of an investigation before starting the research

The identification of the purpose of a study is an essential aspect or component in the research process. The identification of purpose and intention is ideally established prior to the research process itself. The reason for this is that the identification of purpose helps to direct and control the research. For example, if project management within a certain era of human building and architectural history is explored with the central purpose of establishing central factors that were to lead to further developments in the history of management, then this purpose acts as a guideline as it were in the research and determines the selection of sources and methodology that will be used. One would not, for example, research on areas outside this general intention and purpose. In other words, if one does not have a firm and definite intention, then the research will tend to be inconclusive and undirected, which would not be helpful in leading towards clear and scientific outcomes.

4. Explain the function of a hypothesis in doing research

The function of as hypothesis is to act as a projected… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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