On Faith, Fact and Interaction in Projects

Joana Geraldi, Gerald Adlbrecht

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Projects are and have always been complex. However, complexity is hardly managed or influenced. This paper discusses the concept of patterns of complexity, the minimal manageable "space" of complexity. In order to appraise this pattern, complexity was grouped in three types: faith, fact, and interaction. Based on this typology, 10 characteristics typically involved in projects were defined. This resulting pattern was quantitatively and qualitatively tested with eight projects through the perspective of the project manager. Based on these results, the set of characteristics, as welt as the method used to assess its intensity, is discussed. The results show that the pattern of complexity embraces relevant characteristics to support the situated management of projects, maintaining the holistic and strategic view of projects. The predominant type of complexity perceived by project managers was the complexity of interaction. This highlights the importance of coordination in projects. However, the coexistence of these three complexities was a constant in projects.
Original languageEnglish
JournalProject Management Journal
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)32-43
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes

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