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Journal of Engineering, Project, and Production Management, 2015, 5(2), 71-81

 

Engendering Change within a Water Infrastructure Client Organisation: A Participatory Action Research Approach

 

Michael Potts1, Bankole Awuzie2, Peter McDermott3, and Andrew Stephenson4

1PhD Candidate, School of the Built Environment, University of Salford. E-mail: m.potts@edu.salford.ac.uk (corresponding author).

2Post-Doctoral Scholar, Central University of Technology, Free State, SA. E-mail: obankawuzie@gmail.com

3Professor, School of the Built Environment, University of Salford. E-mail: p.mcdermott@salford.ac.uk

4Industry Supervisor, UK WASC, Greater Manchester. E-mail: mr_a_stephenson@hotmail.com

 

Project Management

 

Excellent Paper of EPPM2014 Conference

 

Received January 8, 2015; received revision May 22, 2015; accepted May 24, 2015

 

Available online June 16, 2015

 

Abstract:Continuing demands by stakeholders for improved service delivery has caused Infrastructure Client Organisations (ICO) in the UK to embark upon organisational restructuring. It is expected that such restructuring would enhance cost-effectiveness and quality in asset management and service delivery. However, this change, if not properly managed and sustained, could result in the inability of the ICO to achieve these targets. This study outlines the use of systemic thinking and Participatory Action Research (PAR) in driving and managing such change within a UK-based Water and Wastewater ICO (UK WASC). Besides highlighting the context for change in response to policy, austerity and regulatory pressures, this study portrays how the PAR approach can assist in the management of change within ICOs. Furthermore, it provides an insight into the evolution of an external researcher, from novice to expert within the ICO, imbued with the required knowledge to encourage other stakeholders to participate in driving the change management process. Preliminary findings indicate the usefulness of this phased approach toward PAR. This study provides a platform for researchers wishing to engage with ICOs to improve service delivery, identifying the value of engagement, change and systemic thinking.

 

Keywords: Infrastructure delivery, participatory action research, change management.

Copyright © Association of Engineering, Project, and Production Management (EPPM-Association).

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Requests for reprints and permissions at eppm.journal@gmail.com.

Citation: Potts, M., Awuzie, B., McDermott, P., and Stephenson, A. (2015). Engendering Change within a Water Infrastructure Client Organisation: A Participatory Action Research Approach. Journal of Engineering, Project, and Production Management, 5(2), 71-81.

DOI: 10.32738/JEPPM.201507.0003

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