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Topic Title: PhD Project Management
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Created On: 11 January 2014 08:06 PM
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 11 January 2014 08:06 PM
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I'm about to begin applying to several universities for a PhD placement that I'm planning to base around an aspect of project management (my current employment role). To achieve the best chance of acceptance I would need to suggest a unique area of research relating to project management that can be improved upon or expanded. A real-life industry problem that could be researched and a realistic solution presented would likely be the best opportunity of acceptance.

Are any of you folks involved in project management within industry and aware of any specific problems that could be improved and would be substantial enough to form the basis of a thesis?


Scott Seedell - BSc(Hons) IEng MIET
 13 January 2014 08:35 PM
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I assume you will want to start your PhD in October 2014 and finish it in September 2017.

Have you ever read "The Pyschology of Computer Programming" (1971) Gerald M. Weinberg or more modern works in a similar vein. Good for a laugh.

I think the Project Management of complex Software Development projects still remains a difficult and unsolved problem. Like many people I have thought about some of the necessary conditions and ad-hoc constraints for a software development project to reach satisfactory project completion.

I suppose the PhD must involve either collecting evidence form lots of projects and assessing what works and what does not work on a statisical basis somehow, without letting your pre-conceived ideas get in the way or cloud your judgement unduely; or coming up with a new methodology or a variant of an existing methodology, and then arrange to have it used and evaluated in practice.

I agree I don't really see how you can do a PhD in software development project management without getting permission to use reliably recorded real world data in your thesis e.g. from analysis of anonymised data contained in a source code control systems etc.

James Arathoon
 15 February 2014 08:43 AM
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Doing a PhD in Project Management can be a real life problem or issue in your current employment. Have you been discussing with your colleagues or bosses whether currently any issue or improvement they want?

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