Project Management for Development in Africa: Why Projects are Failing and What Can be Done About It?

Eric Munyao 51 PAGES (14120 WORDS) Dissertation
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Contents

Chapter One: Introduction...............................................................................................................4

1.1 Introduction............................................................................................................................4

1.2 Aims and Objectives..............................................................................................................6

1.3 Research Questions................................................................................................................7

1.4 Research Rationale................................................................................................................7

Chapter 2: Literature Review...........................................................................................................9

2.1 Introduction............................................................................................................................9

2.2 Project Failure in the World................................................................................................10

2.3 Causes of Developmental Failure........................................................................................12

2.3.1 Poor Financial Capacity................................................................................................13

2.3.2 Inaccurate Prediction of Budgets and Corruption........................................................14

2.3.3 Inadequate Knowledge.................................................................................................14

2.4 Project Failure in the World................................................................................................15

2.4.1 Visibility in the Projects...............................................................................................15

2.4.2 Unclear Objectives of the Project.................................................................................15

2.4.3 Visibility into the Workload of Resources...................................................................16

2.4.4 Resource Management..................................................................................................16

2.4.5 Lack of Communication...............................................................................................16

2.5 Involvement of the Governments in the Community-Based Projects in Africa..................16

Chapter 3: Research Methodology................................................................................................19

3.1 Research Philosophy............................................................................................................19

3.2 Research Approach..............................................................................................................20

3.4 Research Strategy................................................................................................................21

3.5 Data Collection Techniques.................................................................................................22

3.6 Organization of the Study....................................................................................................23

3.7 Reliability............................................................................................................................24

Chapter 4: Findings........................................................................................................................25

4.1 STX Building Project in Ghana......................................................................................25

4.1.1 Implementation Plan.........................................................................................................25

34.1.2 Causes of Project Failure..............................................................................................26

4.2 Valley Project of Toshka in Egypt..................................................................................27

4.2.1 Causes of Project Failure:.............................................................................................28

4. 3 Microsoft’s Digital Village in South Africa.......................................................................29

4.3.1 Causes of Project Failure:.............................................................................................29

4.4 Renewable Energy in Africa................................................................................................30

4.4.1Causes of Project Failure:..............................................................................................30

4.5 Renewable Energy in Nigeria..............................................................................................31

4.5.1 Causes of Project Failure:.............................................................................................31

Chapter 5: Analysis and Discussion..............................................................................................33

5.1. Consequences of the Failure of the Aforementioned Projects............................................33

5.2 Critical Success/Failure Factors That Could be Attributed to these Projects......................39

References......................................................................................................................................45

 Analysis and Discussion5.1 Policy ImplicationThe formulation of policy implications was highly essential since it became clear that several factors influenced the critical success/failure of projects in Africa. 5.1.1 Leadership StyleThe leadership style used in a project’s execution has an overbearing result on the success or failure of the project. Analysis of the findings showed that the use of an Autocratic style of leadership is not detrimental to the success of a project. Mainly, an autocratic leadership style forces every stakeholder to follow what the project manager says. This form of leadership style breeds mistrust, incompetency, and corruption. Autocratic leaders do not consider what others have to say. Good ideas are shut down and not given a chance of development (De Vries, Bakker-Pieper, and Oostenveld, 2010 p. 369). Moreover, such a leadership style employs partisan ideologies in the selection of project executors. Technocrats are forced to suffer under harsh rules when performing a project. Individuals lose the right to raise red flags when they notice a problem in the recruitment or project plan. Specifically, condemning such a leader proves to be difficult for fear of losing a contract. Sadly, the politicization of most development projects has made the matter worse. However, the only way to beat such a system is to employ leadership savvy individuals as partners when executing government projects. Technocrats can include a clause which states thatthe state will have to share the management rights of the project with the partnering company. This method allows technocrats to employ effective leadership styles such as affiliative, 

authoritative, or democratic leadership styles. These leadership styles seek to integrate all employees in the project and also motivate performance while promoting transparency (De Vries, Bakker-Pieper, and Oostenveld, 2010 p. 377). A change in leadership style would have yielded different results in both the SFX housing project and the new valley project.5.1.2 Technical AbilitiesLarge scale projects require a project manager who offers technical, functional, and support skills to the endeavour. The chosen individual is expected to meet several objectives while overseeing the progress of the project. Specifically, project managers have to meet all milestones, avoid risk, meet the budget, and assess other alternatives (Gillard, 2009 p. 724). Consequently, the project manager is expected to have exceptional technical abilities that allow them to plan and mitigate any problems.Selection of a project manager should be based on the technical abilities of the individual and not the leadership skill or political status. Many projects overlook this process due to a lack of competency in the planning stages. Governments need to learn to engage with partners and thoroughly discuss all aspects of the project. Furthermore, all project partners should actively take part in the recruitment and selection process of the project manager. Employing individuals with exceptional technical abilities significantly boosts the success rate of the project (Gillard 2009 p. 724). Mainly, a qualified project manager does not overlook crucial factors that might affect the success of the project. Therefore, the government should necessitate the selection of a project manager with highly-rated technical skills for any government projects. 

5.1.3 CommunicationCommunication plays a pivotal role in the success of any project. Many government projects suffer from disaccord between the government and the project executors. The projects lack well-detailed communication plans that prepare individuals for any eventualities. Effective communication plans simplify the process of executing the project. (Wu, Liu, Zhao, and Zuo 2017 p. 1467) also, note that the willingness to communicate and formal communication positively affects the success rate of large projects. Communication settles any qualms and boosts team play among all stakeholders in the project. 5.1.4 Project ManagementEffective project management boosts the overall success of the project. Project Scope ManagementThe success of any project depends on the effectiveness of the planning stage. Governmentprojects should effectively plan the project goals, deadlines, expected derivable, budget estimation, and project constraints. Affluent planning avoids cases of changing the deadline or asking for more funding halfway through the project. Project meet set deadlines and avoid changing the scope of the project.  Project Integration ManagementEffective project scope management outlines the life cycle of the project. Project integration allows the cycle to run smoothly without any obstacles. Successful project integrationallows government projects to factor all stages of project development by developing project charters, and management plans that provide room for monitoring and evaluating progress. Project Time Management

Project time management prepares for any eventualities that take place during the execution of the project. Effective policies should monitor the process of resource estimation, and timeline deliveries. Such policies should also provide repercussions for poor estimations of projects.Quality ManagementTo avoid cases of poor projects that fail to meet their estimated life cycle, governments should focus on strict quality guidelines for projects. Quality management helps in the creation of quality policies during the planning stage. The factor helps in improving the quality of the project and promoting durability.Human Resource ManagementGovernments should take a strategic approach to the hiring and recruitment process of people to work in the project. An extensive recruitment process allows effective job matching and limits the amount of incompetence recorded because of poor working labour. 5.2 Conclusion and RecommendationsThe study assessed the causes of project failures in African countries. Through the use of a qualitative approach to the issue, the research discovered that most failed projects suffered from poor leadership, communication issues, lack of transparency, accountability, and poor planning. The paper presents a meta-analysis of current literature on project failure in Africa while incorporating case study assessments to provide recommendations to policymakers. If African countries want to enhance the chances of success in their projects, policy changes are necessary. An effective policy should be developed to necessitate the importance of project planning. Notably, the developed legislation should enforce mandatory planning period before project 

commencement. A systems approach to project failures in Africa shows that most problems stemfrom poor planning. Enforcing the planning process could help avoid some of these mistakes. Furthermore, the government should also provide policies that limit its power when it comes to joint government projects. Technocrats deserve the freedom to execute projects to the best of their abilities without limitations from the government or politicians. Lastly, governments shouldavoid politicisation of government projects. Consequently, politicians should be barred from inclusion in government projects to promote the skilled application of technical skills. These policy changes could make a significant in project execution in Africa if enacted.

References

De Vries, R.E., Bakker-Pieper, A. and Oostenveld, W., 2010. Leadership= communication? The relations of leaders’ communication styles with leadership styles, knowledge sharing and leadership outcomes.

Journal of business and psychology, 25(3), pp.367-380.Gillard, S., 2009. Soft skills and technical expertise of effective project managers. Issues in informing science & information technology, 6 pp. 723-729

Wu, G., Liu, C., Zhao, X. and Zuo, J., 2017. Investigating the relationship between communication-conflict interaction and project success among construction project teams. International Journal of Project Management, 35(8), pp.1466-1482.

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APA

Eric, M (2020). Project Management for Development in Africa: Why Projects are Failing and What Can be Done About It?. Afribary.com: Retrieved September 18, 2020, from https://afribary.com/works/project-failure

MLA 8th

Munyao, Eric. "Project Management for Development in Africa: Why Projects are Failing and What Can be Done About It?" Afribary.com. Afribary.com, 10 Sep. 2020, https://afribary.com/works/project-failure . Accessed 18 Sep. 2020.

MLA7

Munyao, Eric. "Project Management for Development in Africa: Why Projects are Failing and What Can be Done About It?". Afribary.com, Afribary.com, 10 Sep. 2020. Web. 18 Sep. 2020. < https://afribary.com/works/project-failure >.

Chicago

Munyao, Eric. "Project Management for Development in Africa: Why Projects are Failing and What Can be Done About It?" Afribary.com (2020). Accessed September 18, 2020. https://afribary.com/works/project-failure