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Project Failure: Causes and Cures Project Failure: Some Causes and Cures

By Tom Gilb


It is well known, and well documented, that far too many engineering projects fail totally or partially: both in civil engineering [Morris], and in software engineering [Neill]. I think everybody has some opinions about this. I do too, having worked over several decades as an international consultant on a wide range of projects, and having been involved in saving many ‘almost failed ’ projects. Here in this paper, I will present some of my conclusions, and hope to lend some originality to the discussion. My basic premises are that • we fail to accurately specify our requirements in sufficient detail, and • we do not sufficiently focus our design and project management energies on meeting the requirements. Principles I shall summarize my ideas for improved project control in a set of principles: P1: The critical few product objectives need to be stated measurably. P2: The project team must be rewarded to the degree they achieve the critical produc

Year: 2004
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