Understanding the determinants of program organization for construction megaproject success: Case study of the Shanghai expo construction

Yi Hu, Ping Chuen Chan, Yun Le

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


Program management is increasingly regarded as a key approach to improving the performance of a construction megaproject through the coordinated management of its constituent projects. However, previous studies have seldom provided a pragmatic program management framework that can fully address the requirements of clients in managing construction megaprojects. Therefore, based on a case study of the Shanghai Expo construction, this study aims to identify the principal program organization factors (POFs) that are determinants of the program organization established by a client to manage a megaproject. Mixed research methods, such as case study, literature review, interviews, Delphi survey, and archival methods, are employed in this study. Consequently, 12 principal POFs, grouped under three main categories (environmental capability, core capacity, and motivational capability of the client's program organization to manage its construction megaproject), are identified: (1) contextual understanding, (2) program strategy, (3) program leadership, (4) scope management, (5) program governance, (6) matrix organizational structure, (7) program management office, (8) use of project breakdown structure and work breakdown structure tools, (9) partnering with key stakeholders, (10) technology management, (11) communication management, and (12) team building. These research findings will help scholars and professionals, particularly those in China, to appreciate the key issues in managing megaprojects through program organization.
Original languageEnglish
Article number05014019
JournalJournal of Management in Engineering
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • China
  • Client organizations
  • Construction megaprojects
  • Program organization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Industrial relations
  • Engineering(all)
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research

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