Modern Project Management

(ISSN: 2317-3963)

Adapting project management methodologies for different cultures: Teams, toolboxes and hofstede

Dr. Kai-Uwe Seidenfuss
University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia
Dr. Joerg Storm
Uniwersytet ekonomizny w krakowie, krakov, Poland


This paper looks at the unstudied link between cultural factors and necessary adaptations to typically standardized project management methodologies. In an empirical study resulting in 768 questionnaires for the US, Germany, and Japan, the well-established Hofstede dimensions were for the first time found to be correlated with the dimensions of the established methodology of the Project Management Institute (PMI). In addition, eight detailed elements of the PMI methodology were studied, with six areas displaying correlations to the Hofstede dimensions – the strongest for Project Human Resource Management (UAI r=0.394, MAS r=0.445, PDI r=0.441, IDV r=-0.358). Real-life projects however showed a lack of such considerations, making the derived recommendations for project managers as relevant as the suggested avenues for further research.

Keywords: Cultures, Globalisation, Hofstede dimensions, HR management, Project management, Project management Methodologies, Teams, Tools, Training, IT Projects, United States, Germany, japan.



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