Organizational Enablers for Project Governance and Governmentality in Project-based Organizations

Ralf Müller, Sofia Pemsel, Jingting Shao

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


This study identifies organizational enablers (OEs) for governance and governmentality in the realm of projects in project-based organizations (PBOs). We use a multiple case study design with six firms in Sweden and China to identify OEs. Institutional theory serves as theoretical perspective. Results show that OEs are interwoven, albeit with different strength, with the three pillars of institutional theory (regulative, normative and cultural–cognitive). OEs for project governance and governance of projects fall predominantly into the category of regulative and normative pillars, whereas OEs for governmentality belong mainly to the cultural–cognitive pillar. Collectively these OEs provide for an ambidexterity of flexibility and stability, which allows organizations to align their internal characteristics with their organizational context. Managerial and theoretical implications of the results are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Project Management
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)839-851
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Project governance
  • Governmentality
  • Governance of projects
  • Project-based organizations
  • Organizational enablers

Cite this