PROJMGNT 7024 - Complex Project Management 1

North Terrace Campus - Trimester 2 - 2017

Understanding of complex systems and development of competence to manage the investigation, feasibility, requirements definition, planning and delivery of complex projects, which include autonomous and independent systems. Consideration of different management styles for complicated (linear projects) and complex projects, including use of various techniques addressed in Systems Fundamentals. The course follows system fundamentals and includes a number of aspects of managing complex projects. These are: the modern history of system of systems engineering (SOSE); SoSE case studies; types of uncertainty and emergence; key aspects of complex systems; risk management of complex systems; systems thinking including soft systems methodology; modelling and simulation of SoS; sense making and tiny initiating events.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code PROJMGNT 7024
    Course Complex Project Management 1
    Coordinating Unit Entrepreneurship, Commercialisation & Innov Centre
    Term Trimester 2
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Intensive: 36 to 40 hours
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites PROJMGNT 5021 & PROJMGNT 7047
    Assessment Assignments, reports
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Associate Professor Indra Gunawan

    Program Director Contact Details:
    Project Management
    Name: Associate Professor Indra Gunawan

    Trimester 2
    Name: Dr Alex Gorod

    Alex Gorod is the Founder and Managing Member at SystemicNet, LLC in New York City. He is also an Adjunct Associate Professor at Zicklin School of Business, City University of New York and the University of Adelaide. Alex is a recipient of the Fabrycky-Blanchard Award for Excellence in Systems Engineering Research and Robert Crooks Stanley Doctoral Fellowship in Engineering Management. Alex holds a PhD in Engineering Management from Stevens Institute of Technology.  


    Office hours will be arranged via Skype

    Semester 2

    Name: Associate Professor Indra Gunawan

    Indra Gunawan is Associate Professor in Complex Project Management and the Director of Project Management Program in the Entrepreneurship, Commercialisation and Innovation Centre at the University of Adelaide.

    He received his PhD in Industrial Engineering and MSc in Construction Management from Northeastern University, USA.  Prior to joining the University of Adelaide, he was a program coordinator for Maintenance and Reliability Engineering at Monash University.  Previously he has
    also taught in the Department of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering at Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand and worked as the Head of Systems Engineering and Management program at Malaysia University of Science and Technology (in collaboration with the MIT, USA). 

    His current research interests include system reliability modelling, maintenance optimisation, project management, applications of operations
    research, and operations management.  He is actively involved in the Asset Management Council, a technical society of Engineers Australia. 


    Trimester 3

    Professor Frank Schultmann
    Short Bio
    Frank Schultmann is Professor of Complex Project Management and Director of Project Management for the University of Adelaide. He is also Chair Professor at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany, and Director of the KIT’s Institute for Industrial Production (IIP) and the KIT’s French-German Institute for Environmental Research (DFIU).

    Professor Schultmann studied Business and Industrial Engineering at the University of Karlsruhe. He completed his doctoral thesis in 1998 at the Faculty of Economics and Business Engineering and his Habilitation in 2003 receiving the venia legendi (teaching authority) in Management Science. Prior to his present positions, he was Professor of Industrial Management at the University of Koblenz-Landau and holder of the Chair of Business Administration, Construction Management and Economics at the University of Siegen.


    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

    Opening intensive: 
    Tuesday 13 and Wednesday 14th June 2017
    Napier, 210, Teaching Room
    Closing intensive:
    Tuesday 25th and Wednesday 26th July 2017
    Napier, 210, Teaching Room
  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    On the successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

    Identify different types of projects in project management and explain how management styles can vary depending on the type of a project employed.
    2 Analyze real life complex project management case studies from multiple domains and illustrate practical application of research methods and toolsets.
    3 Examine the latest interdisciplinary research in complex project management and apply lessons learned and best practices to the development of potential solutions to contemporary global challenges. 
    4 Compare and employ different levels of interpersonal skills as appropriate for effective teamwork and leadership in complex project management.
    5 Demonstrate the importance of developing broader awareness and maintaining high ethical and socio-cultural standards to successful complex project management.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    There is no required textbook.
    Recommended Resources
    Text books:
    Mo Jamshidi, (2009) System of Systems – Innovations for the 21st Century, Hoboken, John

    Gorod, A., B. White, V. Ireland, J. Gandhi, and B. Sauser. (eds.) (2014) “Case Studies in System of Systems, Enterprises, and Complex Systems Engineering” New York, NY: CRC Press, Taylor & Francis.


    Please see list in Course Notes

    Library Resources
    The University of Adelaide’s Barr Smith Library provides a range of learning resources including texts, journals, periodicals, magazines, and access to online databases and information services. It also offers a virtual library which is accessible via the University’s website. Access to the Library's electronic resources.

    Other Resources
    If you are a member of the PMI ( you will “gain exclusive access to PMI publications and our global standards*, networking options with our chapters and online communities of practice, and leadership and volunteer opportunities. You’ll also receive discounts on certification exams and renewals, as well as our professional development offerings.” Student membership is USD$40 to join and USD$30 to renew.

    * Log in to access complimentary read-only PDFs of all of PMI's published standards or take advantage of discounts on paperback editions
    Online Learning
    MyUni is the University of Adelaide's online learning environment. It is used to support traditional face-to-face lectures, tutorials and workshops at the University. MyUni provides access to various features including announcements, course materials, discussion boards and assessments for each online course of study.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes

    This course is offered in blended learning mode with the face-to-face component offered as intensives.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    As a guide, a 3 unit course comprises a total of 156 hours work (this includes face-to-face contact, any online components, and self directed study).
    Learning Activities Summary
    This is a draft schedule and session dates are a guide only. The timetable may be changed during the course delivery if necessary.
    Intensive Content Readings/Activities
    1 & 2 Topics 1-6 in notes Jamshidi, M. (2008). “Chapter 1 Introduction to System of Systems.” in System of Systems Engineering: Innovations for the 21st Century; M. Jamshidi (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp 1-20

    Azani, C. (2008). “Chapter 2 An Open Systems Approach to System of Systems Engineering.” in System of Systems Engineering: Innovations for the 21st Century; M. Jamshidi (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp 1-20

    Dagli, C. and N. Kilicay-Ergin. (2008). “Chapter 4 SoS Management.” in System of Systems Engineering: Innovations for the 21st Century; M. Jamshidi (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp 77-100

    Sauser, B., J. Boardman, and A. Gorod. (2008). “Chapter 8 SoS Management.” in System of Systems Engineering: Innovations for the 21st Century; M. Jamshidi (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp191-218

    DeLaurentis, D. (2008). “Chapter 20 Understanding Transportation as a System of Systems Problem.” in System of Systems Engineering: Innovations for the 21st Century; M. Jamshidi (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp 520-541

    Gorod, A., B. Sauser, and J. Boardman. (2008). “System of Systems Engineering Management: A Review of Modern History and a Path Forward.” IEEE Systems Journal. 2(4):484-499

    Keating C., R. Rogers., R. Unal., D. Dryer., A. Sousa-Poza., R Safford., W. Peterson., and G. Rabadi. (2003). “System of Systems Engineering.” Engineering Management Journal 15(3):36-45

    Boardman, J. and B. Sauser. (2006) System of Systems – the meaning of Of. IEEE International Conference on System of Systems Engineering. April 24-26, Los Angeles, CA

    Bar-Yam.Y., M. Allison., R. Batdorf., H. Chen., H. Generazio., H. Singh., and S. Tucker. (2004) “The Characteristics and Emerging Behaviors of System of Systems.”NECSI: Complex Physical, Biological and Social Systems Project (

    D. Firesmith (2010) “Profiling Systems Using the Defining Characteristics of Systems of Systems (SoS).” Report CMU/SEI-2010-TN-001 Software Engineering Institute, Carnegie Mellon (

    Maier M. (1998). “Architecting Principles for System-of-Systems.” Systems Engineering 1 (4), pp. 267-284

    Haimes, Y., “Chapter 3 The Process of Risk Assessment and Management.” in Handbook of Systems Engineering and Management; A.P. Sage., W.B. Rouse (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp. 155-205

    Gandhi, J., A. Gorod, and B. Sauser.(2011). “Systemic Risk of System of Systems.” IEEE International Systems Conference. April 4-7. Montreal, Quebec, Canada

    Gorod, A., B. White, V. Ireland, J. Gandhi, and B. Sauser. (eds.) (2014) “Case Studies in System of Systems,
    Enterprises, and Complex Systems Engineering” New York, NY: CRC Press, Taylor & Francis.

    Shenhar, A. and D. Dvir. (2007) “Reinventing Project Management: The Diamond Approach to Successful Growth & Innovation.” Harvard Business School Press, Boston

    Francois. C (1999). “Systemics and Cybernetics in a Historical Perspective.” Systems Research and Behavioral Science 16(3):203-219

    Sage A.P., and W.B. Rouse. “Chapter 1 An Introduction to Systems Engineering and Systems Management.” in Handbook of Systems Engineering and Management, 2nd ed.; A.P. Sage., W.B. Rouse (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp. 1-64

    Eisenhardt, K. (1989) “Building Theories from Case Study Research.” Academy of Management Review 14(4):532-550

    Conrow, E.H. (2005). “Risk Management for Systems of Systems.” Cross Talk: The Journal of Defense Software Engineering

    Gorod, A., J. Gandhi, B. Sauser, and J. Boardman. (2008). “Flexibility of System of Systems.” Global Journal of Flexible Systems Management. 9(4)

    Volberda H. W. (1998) “Building the Flexible Firm: How to Remain Competitive.” New York, Oxford University Press

    Mansouri, M., A. Gorod, and B. Sauser. (2010). “A Typology-based Approach to Adopting Effective Management Styles for Enterprise Systems.” IEEE International Systems Conference. April 5-8. San Diego, CA.
    3 & 4 Topics 7-10 in notes Keating, C.B., “Chapter 7 Emergence in System of Systems.” in System of Systems Engineering: Innovations for the 21st Century; M. Jamshidi (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp191-218

    Mittal, S., Zeigler, J. Risko Martin, F. Sahin, M. Jamshidi. (2008). “Chapter 5 Modeling and Simulation for Systems of Systems Engineering.” in System of Systems Engineering: Innovations for the 21st Century; M. Jamshidi (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp.191-218

    Sheard, S., “Chapter 30 Complex Adaptive Systems in Systems Engineering and Management.” in Handbook of Systems Engineering and Management; A.P. Sage., W.B. Rouse (ed.) Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons. pp. 1283-1318

    Sterman, J. (2006) “Learning from Evidence in a Complex World.” American Journal of Public Health. 96(3):505-514

    Epstein, J., (2008) “Why Model?” Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation. 11(412)

    Gorod, A., B. White, V. Ireland, J. Gandhi, and B. Sauser. (eds.) (2014) “Case Studies in System of Systems,
    Enterprises, and Complex Systems Engineering” New York, NY: CRC Press, Taylor & Francis.

    Magee, C. L., and O.L. de Weck (2004) “Complex System Classification.” 14th Annual International Symposium of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) June 20-24

    Sterman, J., (2002) “All Models are wrong: reflections on becoming a systems scientist.” Systems Dynamics Review 18(4):501-531
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    An overview of the course assessment appears in the following Table. Details appear in the following section:
    # Assessment Task Task Type Length
    Weighting Learning outcomes
    1 Essay/report Individual 1500 words maximum (each) 30% 1-3
    2 Case study presentation Individual 10 minutes 20% 1-3, 5
    3 Reflection on case study presentation report Individual 500 words 10%

    1-3, 5
    4 Final report Group Minimum length:
    5 people – 15,000 words
    30% 1-5
    Class contribution Individual 10% 1-5
    Total 100%
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Students must complete all course assessment requirements and must attend lectures to be eligible to pass the course.

    Course results are subject to moderation by the ECIC Board of Examiners
    Assessment Detail
    Assessment 1:  Essay/report (Individual)
    Weighting:    30%
    Due Dates:     15 July, 2017
    Submission Details:   Online through MyUni

    Why are some projects complex? How do they differ from complicated projects? Provide some examples of complex projects.  Why have
    traditional project management models failed to provide adequate structural support for complex projects?

    The objective of these questions is for the participant to consider the theoretical material supplied and attempt to apply it to a real life example, if possible. Therefore evidence of having read and understood the material is important. Arguments and assertions should be based on the research articles listed, the important ones of which are encompassed in the notes. This assignment will assess your understanding of the course topics.

    Length and Presentation:
    1500 words (max).
    Given the word limit on these questions, assessment will reward content included. There will be penalties for exceeding the word limit. Quotations do not count in the words counted. Please ensure you add page numbers to your assignment and it is advisable to add your name in the footer or header.

    Criteria by which the assignment will be graded:
    In completing this assignment, higher grades will be awarded for evidence of reading notes, text and papers, and integration of this theory
    into your answers. Direct referencing of external material in your answers is preferred.

    Learning objectives with this assessment: 1,2,3

    Assessment 2:  Case study presentation (Individual)
    Weighting:    20%
    Due Dates:     25 July, 2017
    Submission Details:   In Class

    Individual presentation covering the following:

    * Identity a SoS;
    * Use five distinguishing characteristics to describe it;
    * Identify examples of and describe External Factors, which could influence the SoS;
    * Identify the Governing Body;
    * Describe the Feedback process between the SoS and the Governing Body;
    * Identify examples of and describe Constraints affecting the Governing body’s decision making process.

    The objective of this 10 minute presentation is to demonstrate your analysis of an identified System of Systems case utilizing principal theories presented in class.

    Length and Presentation:
    10 minutes. Please be advised that references are mandatory to show your understanding of the subject matter. No more than 10 power point slides are permitted.  Each presentation will be followed by a Q&A session.

    Criteria by which the assignment will be graded:
    The criteria for grading of this assignment will be based on the depth of case analysis
    and understanding of the material presented.

    Learning objectives with this assessment: 1,2,3,5

    Assessment 3: Reflection on Case Study presentation (Individual) report
    Weighting:    10%
    Due Dates:     10 August, 2017
    Submission Details:   Online through MyUni

    Create a brief report of 500 words as a reflection of the case study presentation as
    described in Assessment 2.

    The objective of this report is to show what you have learned as a result of your individual case study presentation.

    Length and Presentation:
    500 words.

    Criteria by which the assignment will be graded:
    The criteria for grading of this assignment will be based on the depth and coherence of your analysis.

    Learning objectives with this assessment: 1,2,3,5

    Assessment 4:  Final report (Group)
    Weighting:    30%
    Due Dates:     28 August, 2017
    Submission Details:    Online through MyUni. Send one copy for the group ensuring all group member names are clear.

    Create a case study report for an approved project as instructed below, implementing the theoretical material you have covered. Groups should be of five people. To add additional team members, you need to seek special approval stating reasons. This assignment is intended to be the practical application of theory. As you may be using material in this report which was developed by others, it is important to note what was your contribution and what was the contribution of others.

    The paper should have the following headings with the following specifications:

    -200 words or less
    -Briefly describe the complex system under consideration
    -What problem is this complex system addressing for what organization, program or activity
    -Define the perceived process, situation or problem presented in the case
    Background Information
    -Context for the complex system and your case
    -Definitions that apply to the process, situation or problem: advanced terminology or jargon, explain what each word means in your study, concisely and clearly
    -Relevant theories/research and prior development regarding the complex system and your case: what has other research or studies found to be true in teh complex system and your specific case
    Complex System Description
    -Root Definition (RD)
    -History and Development
    -Rich Picture/SystemiGram
    -Sponsors/Customers, Industry Sector, Companies Involved, Country, Budget
    -Principles Characteristics
    -External Factors
    -Governing Constraints
    -Constituent Systems/Components (new/legacy, scope)
    System Analysis
    -Analysis and Analytical Findings
    -Timeframe/Sequence of events
    -Methods and Tools used
    -Lessons Learned
    -Best Practices
    -Steps and conditions for replicating the complex system elsewhere
    -Summary of the case and your findings/recommendations
    Questions for Discussions
    -Please provide 2-5 questions that are based on this case and could be used for a discussion in a classroom environment

    The Case Study Paper is expected to reflect the following:
    1. Describe a complex system;
    2. Present a real life process, situation or problem;
    3. Offer adequate and detailed informatino to assess the process, situation or problem by the case reader;
    4. Present an objective view of the process, situation or problem;
    5. Offer relevant questions for further discussion;
    6. Be cogent;
    7. Satisfactorily explain the basis for its conclusions.

    Length and Presentation:
    Minimum length:
    5 people - 15,000 words

    The paper should follow the style guide of the IEEE (see Template for Transactions Section at:

    Criteria by which the assignment will be graded:
    Please see Scope section above
    Learning objectives with this assessment: 1-5

    Assessment 5: Class contribution
    Weighting: 10%
    Due Dates: Ongoing in class
    A class participation mark will be based on attendance and participation.
    Class attendance and active participation are expected throughout the course.
    Criteria by which the assignment will be graded:
    Please see Scope section above
    Learning objectives with this assessment: 1-5
    All text based assignments must be submitted via MyUni.
    Please refer to step by step instructions: MyUni Learning Centre

    There are a few points to note about the submission of assignments:
    • Assignment Submission: Assignments should not be emailed to the instructor but should be lodged via the MyUni Course site. Note that assignments may be processed via TURNITIN which is an online plagiarism prevention tool.
    • Cover Sheet: Please submit, separate to your assignment, the completed University of Adelaide Assessment Cover Sheet providing details of yourself and your team members (if applicable), your assignment, the course, date submitted, etc. as well as the declaration signed by you that this is your (your team’s) work. Note that the declaration on any electronically submitted assignment will be deemed to have the same authority as a signed declaration.
    • Backup Copy of Assignments: You are advised to keep a copy of your assignments in case the submitted copy goes missing. Please ensure that all assignment pages are numbered. If your assignment contains confidential information, you should discuss any concerns with the Course Lecturer prior to submission.
    • Extensions of Time: Any request for an extension of time for the submission of an assignment should be made well before the due date of the assignment to the Course Lecturer. Normally, extensions will only be granted for a maximum of two weeks from the original assignment submission date. Extensions will only be granted in cases of genuine extenuating circumstances and proof, such as a doctor’s certificate, may be required.
    • Failure to submit: Failure to submit an assignment on time or by the agreed extension deadline may result in penalties and may incur a fail grade. Note that a late penalty of 5% of the total available marks for that assessment item will be incurred each day an assignment is handed in late. Assignments handed in after 14 days from the due submission date will fail even if a 100% mark is granted for the work.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

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    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

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