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Innovation at Large

Managing Multi-Organization, Multi-Team Projects


Johanna Schönrok

Due to increasing complexity in new product development multi-organization, multi-team (MOMT) projects are becoming more common. They are formed in different industries like computer, automotive, aircraft, and space research. Since many of these projects still fail, more knowledge on the influences on performance in and of such projects is required in order to be able to manage them successfully. The author examines the influences of communication within and between teams on team and project performance, which in turn depends on applied design principles that structure and facilitate that information flow. Quantitative and qualitative analyses reveal that there are differential relations on the team and project level as well as for effectiveness and efficiency. Managerial implications are given of how to structure MOMT projects and the design problem-solving process and thereby facilitate the information flow within and between teams in order to make the teams and projects successful.


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4 Research Design 55


55 4 Research Design This chapter provides an overview of the research approach. Based on the research questions stated in the first chapter, a quantitative as well as qualitative research design is applied. Two MOMT projects in the field of space research are studied – on the local, team level and on the global, project level. After introducing the research setting, the data-collection process, and the different methods and respective analysis are described. For testing the hypotheses stated in the previous two chapters the quantitative measures and analysis of the predicting and dependent variables, shown in the refined conceptual model for team performance (see Figure 3.2), are discussed. Subsequently, the qualitative research design – case study – mainly applied to study the direct and indirect influence on project performance is addressed. The results for team performance are presented in chapter 5 and for project performance in Chapter 6. 4.1 Research Setting In this research the performance of complex NPD in MOMT projects is studied. The importance of problem-solving communication for team as well as project performance was highlighted, which in turn is influenced by the applied systematic design principles – represented in the preliminary conceptual model and formulated in the first two main research questions in Chapter 1. To study these research questions theoretically useful projects were selected, namely two space-research projects. As stated in the first chapter, they were chosen because they possess the dimensions characteristic of increasing complexity in NPD: 1. They develop complex new products 2. in collaboration with many different...

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