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Analyzing the organizational complexity and related risks that influence the successful development in the front-end phase of innovative smart urban energy projects



Last Updated: 2-2019


These days it is critical to develop our cities into intelligent and sustainable environments to counter developments as climate change, growth of the urban population and the energy challenge. Smart Urban Energy projects are necessary for governments and municipalities to achieve and meet their objectives before 2030. The mindset is present but why are those sustainable and innovative developments still not/slowly happening? Project results show that SUE developments are characterized as complex especially on the organization dimension. Technology is most of the time not the problem but the organizational and management part is the key challenge for project success. Therefore, recognizing the OC and associated risks is a great challenge and of importance in the management of innovative SUE projects and to enhance the development of such projects. Although literature and project results emphasizes that the organizational part is the key challenge, the underlying factors that influence this are not well understood and are poorly addressed. To increase the project success of SUE initiatives and to accelerate the development of our cities into intelligent and sustainable environments it is critical to identify the potential OC and associated risks in such projects as early as possible. Using the Fuzzy Delphi Method (FDM) the relevant OC factors are identified that could arise and influence the development of innovative SUE projects in the front-end phase. The results of the FDM are included in the OC related Risk Diagnosis Model (OCRDM) which has been applied on the Interflex case. This model enables it to assess and diagnose systematically potential OC related risks in innovative SUE projects that could jeopardize project success. The results show the importance of recognizing the main drivers of complexity and front-end analysis of complexity and risks in order to accelerate the successful of innovative SUE projects. It illustrates that such projects is real human work and that it does not only requires insights in the process but also other skills. The identified OC factors and developed OCRDM should not be an end in itself, but a means to provide guidance between various partners in the decision making process.

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