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A Model to Manage Cooperative Project Risks to Create Knowledge and Drive Sustainable Business
Article
Peer-Review Record

Identifying Project Corporate Behavioral Risks to Support Long-Term Sustainable Cooperative Partnerships

Sustainability 2021, 13(11), 6347; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su13116347
Reviewer 1: Anonymous
Reviewer 2: Anonymous
Sustainability 2021, 13(11), 6347; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su13116347
Received: 27 April 2021 / Revised: 21 May 2021 / Accepted: 31 May 2021 / Published: 3 June 2021

Round 1

Reviewer 1 Report

I suggest that the case study (“Introduction to the case study” and „Application of the proposed model and interpretation of results – case study”) to be organized in a different section.

There are still phrases/paragraphs repeated across the paper.

Author Response

Journal: MDPI Sustainability

Special number form Sustainability:

Summitted paper: Identify project corporate behavioral risks to support long-term sustainable cooperative partnerships.

Manuscript sustainability-1218648

Authors: Marco Nunes, António Abreu, Célia Saraiva

 

We would like to thank you all your comments and improvement suggestions as well the time you spend in the analysis of the proposed manuscript.  We believe that your comments and improvement suggestions do contribute to a better overall quality and interest of the proposed manuscript. All changes done in the original manuscript are marked in red. All reviewers’ suggestions and comments as follow were taken into consideration and properly assessed in the submitted manuscript. We hope that we have this way incorporated in an efficiently way all the considered impartments suggestions for the reviewers in the new version of the manuscript. Thank you very much for your help again.

 

Answers to reviewers’ suggestions (yellow marked):

 

Reviewer 1:

I suggest that the case study (“Introduction to the case study” and „Application of the proposed model and interpretation of results – case study”) to be organized in a different section.

Thank you very much for this point. We also fully agree on this and therefore we did place the subchapters “Introduction to the case study” and „Application of the proposed model and interpretation of results – case study” under a new section - Section 4 (Case Study).

There are still phrases/paragraphs repeated across the paper.

Thank you very much for this point. We agree in this point and in order to avoid redundancy we conducted an extensive proof-reading and eliminated repeated phrases / paragraphs across the paper where we think that they do not bring added value to the manuscript.

Author Response File: Author Response.pdf

Reviewer 2 Report

Dear authors,

The idea of how corporate behavioral risks may affect a project success is very intriguing. Also, the method to apply i.e. Social Network Analysis (SNA) is interesting. But I believe that this research should undergo major modifications in order to address this challenging issue. My main reservations are as follows:

  1. All the text should undergo proof-reading, indicatively I refer the followings: lines 11 and 12, line 14 to successfully deliver projects, lines 120-121, lines 998-1000, and so on. 
  2. Although, the model refers to project's life cycle, the observations and thus the results are limited in the initial phases. This is an important issue that the authors should elaborate upon.
  3. The model should be applied in more different cases in order to better support its applicability to a broader group of organisations. The authors should elaborate on this issue.

Author Response

Journal: MDPI Sustainability

Special number form Sustainability:

Summitted paper: Identify project corporate behavioral risks to support long-term sustainable cooperative partnerships.

Manuscript sustainability-1218648

Authors: Marco Nunes, António Abreu, Célia Saraiva

 

We would like to thank you all your comments and improvement suggestions as well the time you spend in the analysis of the proposed manuscript.  We believe that your comments and improvement suggestions do contribute to a better overall quality and interest of the proposed manuscript. All changes done in the original manuscript are marked in red. All reviewers’ suggestions and comments as follow were taken into consideration and properly assessed in the submitted manuscript. We hope that we have this way incorporated in an efficiently way all the considered impartments suggestions for the reviewers in the new version of the manuscript. Thank you very much for your help again.

 

Answers to reviewers’ suggestions (yellow marked):

 

Reviewer 2:

Dear authors,

The idea of how corporate behavioral risks may affect a project success is very intriguing. Also, the method to apply i.e. Social Network Analysis (SNA) is interesting. But I believe that this research should undergo major modifications in order to address this challenging issue.

Thank you very much for this point. We also fully agree that the idea of applying SNA to quantitatively measure / understand how behavioral risks may affect a project success is simultaneous very intriguing, interesting, but also an innovative / breakthrough approach to help organizations to manage project risks. We also agree that the research should take further steps in order to cement the development and application of the proposed model in this manuscript. However, the purpose of the present manuscript is simultaneously to briefly introduce the proposed model highlighting the still many unexplored capacities of the application of SNA in organizations in different domains (in this case – the identification of project risks) and illustrate the how the proposed model can be implemented and applied in organizations in a very practical and straightforward way. Nevertheless, we are fully aware that not all details have been tackled while introducing the development, implementation and the application (case study) proposed model in this work. Still we strongly believe that the most important and relevant aspects / subjects / ideas that are required to a successful implementation and application of the proposed model in this work are clearly explained and easy to follow up across the research conducted in this manuscript. Finally, we believe that the actual revised version of the manuscript contains to a certain extent major modification regarding the writing, exposure of ideas, and of course all the required changes / improvements suggested by the reviewers of round 2.

My main reservations are as follows:

  1. All the text should undergo proof-reading, indicatively I refer the followings: lines 11 and 12, line 14 to successfully deliver projects, lines 120-121, lines 998-1000, and so on. 

Thank you very much for this point. We fully agree with this point and therefore we conducted first an internal (across the authors) proof-reading in order to improve writing and explaining criteria applied, and second, we sent the revised manuscript to a native English speaker in order to tackle remaining spell errors.

 

 

  1. Although, the model refers to project's life cycle, the observations and thus the results are limited in the initial phases. This is an important issue that the authors should elaborate upon.

Thank you very much for this point. We fully agree that the observations and thus the results illustrated in the presented case study as well as in the explanation of the functioning principle of the proposed model in this work (Implementation process of the proposed model) are limited to the organizing and preparing phase of project 1 (also known as phase 2 of a typical PLC according to renowned project management institutes such as the PMI), and to the starting the project and organizing and preparing phases (also known as phase 1 and 2 ) respectively. The reason behind it is that the application of the propose model as well the functioning principles are to be replicated across all the other PL phases of a given project. In this sense, we believe that extending the explanation to the remaining project phases (in section 3 extending for carrying out the work and ending the project) and then in the case study (section 4 illustrating the results of applying the proposed model in phases 1, 3 and 4) would only be considered a redundant approach. Nevertheless, we really thank you for this point, because it enabled us to make even more clear in the actual manuscript that the principle of the application of the proposed model is completely replicable in all different phases of a given project lifecycle. We introduced this information in a very clear way in the new version of the manuscript, which we believe is now more informative and explicit in the previous version of the manuscript which stated that The process is transversal across all the different phases of a given project lifecycle, (illustrated in the model development section). Moreover, we made slight changes in picture three so that is perceptively that the process is to be replicated across all the project phases of a given project lifecycle (pt (i)).

 

 

  1. The model should be applied in more different cases in order to better support its applicability to a broader group of organizations. The authors should elaborate on this issue.

Thank you very much for this point. We fully agree with this point. We continue to apply to the extent possible the developed and proposed model in this manuscript. However, many organizations are still reluctant to apply the propose model in this work namely du to GDPR restrictions. Either because organizations are not familiarized with the GDPR stands and obligations or because they no time to apply the proposed model, the application of the proposed model in this work is dependent on the will that contacted organizations show regarding its implementation and application. Still, applying the model in more different cases in order to better support its applicability to a broader group of organizations as suggested, would imply a huge effort regarding logistic aspects, which in our opinion would only be able to be conducted while working in a consortium with the full support of top management. Nevertheless, it is our objective and will to apply the model to the highest number possible of organizations and in different industries in order to well-round the applicability of the developed model in this work. However, we believe that applying the model to a broader group of organizations would not alter the analysis principle of the proposed model in this work. As we say in the manuscript, the presented model in this work has as objective to expand the visibility of the capabilities of the SNA in detecting and correlating behaviors with outcomes in project environments. As we said in the beginning, we fully agree on this point and therefore we introduced in the suggestion for future research the appliciaotn of the proposed model in more different cases (different industries) and to a broader group of organizations, in order to improve the applicability of the model.

 

Author Response File: Author Response.pdf

Round 2

Reviewer 2 Report

The manuscript is suffiently improved.

This manuscript is a resubmission of an earlier submission. The following is a list of the peer review reports and author responses from that submission.


Round 1

Reviewer 1 Report

The proposed manuscript addresses an interesting topic of research and it has the potential to be a good scientific paper.

Right from the start of the article, on the title, I notice a full stop point, you need to delete it. The next part that stands out is the length of the abstract. Usually, the abstract should not be longer than 200 words. In your case is much longer and my recommendation is to shorten the abstract. This is because together with the title and conclusions the abstract is one of the most important parts of the paper, the reader can decide to consider or not the paper based on title and abstract alone. If we take into consideration the big volume of scientific literature that s published every day, it is obvious that the researchers will not have time to read a very big abstract. The purpose of the abstract is to offer a short context of research, the purpose of the paper, and the main results obtained.

The next part of the paper, the introduction, is well written but in my opinion, it has also a little too much information. In general, you provide good information but I consider that it is too long for the purpose of the introduction and not so well organized. Starting from row 136 “in this work, we propose ….” up to row 177, you need to move it in the part of the paper wee you present the model. The next situation is that you provide a subtitle on the fourth page, I recommend removing the subtitle or leaving it just as a highlighted text. The same recommendation is for the structure of the paper.

The rest of the paper is well written but I also have a general impression that it is too much information presented. The conclusion part is also a very important part of a scientific paper. In your case, the conclusion part is well written. My only recommendation is regarding the use of first, second, third, and so on, personally, I do not like this mode of expression, I do not consider that it brings any plus to the transmission of the idea. My suggestion is to remove this and just present the implication of your study, you can use expressions as “one of the implication is” or “another implication is..”.

As a general conclusion regarding the manuscript, I can say that you did interesting research and you prepare a good paper. I maintain my impression that the paper is too long, maybe you will read it again and try to eliminate the information that is not so important and you can reduce the paper with 4 or 5 pages.

I hope that my recommendations are helping you to present better your research results. I wish you good luck in your future researches.

Reviewer 2 Report

Abstract: in the abstract section are repeated almost identical phrases/paragraphs from the rest of the paper. Please review it.

There are also paragraphs repeating several time in the paper. For instance:

“In this work is proposed a heuristic model to efficiently identify and analyze how corporate behavioral risks may influence project´s outcomes, by quantitatively identifying and analyzing how different project stakeholder behavioral patterns evolve across the different phases of a project lifecycle. The developed model in this work is supported by four fundamental fields ((1) project management, (2) risk management, (3) corporate behavior, and (social network analysis), and will quantitatively measure four critical project social networks ((1) communication, (2) problem-solving, (3) advice, and (4) trust) that usually emerge and evolve as a project is being delivered, by applying SNA centrality metrics.” may be found at least five times.

If you intend to split the introduction in more subsections, the text before line 179 should be included in one.

Line 180-244: Relevance and novelty of the research. All this arguments would be better placed in conclusion section, as theoretical and managerial implications. I suggest keeping in the introduction just a paragraph, as to argue for the need of the research and to integrate the rest in the conclusions. After reading the research and have an image on your proposed model, the readers will better appreciate those arguments.

Line 246-253: I suggest eliminating them. They are repetitive phrases and there is no need to be included in the structure of the paper presentation.

Line 273-295: those phrases are almost identical included into introduction. Please decide the best strategy to build your arguments, but without repeating parts of the paper.

When you mention the name of the author of the paper to be cited, the reference should be places immediately after the name (not at the end of the phrase. Line 297, 301, 306, 308, 314, so an....

Line 456, 461, 470, 473, 478: I suppose the paper was originally whiten in a different referencing style. Please adapt it to the MDPI guidelines.

Reviewer 3 Report

In this manuscript the authors propose and explore a heuristic model for effectively identifying and analyzing how corporate behavioral risks can affect project outcomes. The considered model lays its foundations in several fundamental scientific fields and quantifies several critical social network projects. 

Extensive work has been done to review the literature, which is grouped into several sections. A meaningful example of network analysis is given.

But there are several typos in the work. For example, a word "communication" in line 538, "can be" in line 581, and so on.

Reviewer 4 Report

First of all I would like to thank authors the effort done. From my point of view papers should be improved considering:

  • It is not clear the fundamental fields of the model: project management, risk management, corporate behavior and social network analysis. Which is the link with the measurement of critical project social networks??
  • Objective: how the different corporate behaviors may evolve to cooperate behavioral risks (eventually impacting negatively or positively project´s outcomes) by quantitatively identifying, quantitatively measuring, and analysing how the different project
    stakeholder´s behavioral patterns, emerge and evolve across the different phases of a project lifecycle. Do authors know the impact on project outcome??
  • In introduction (1.1.) authors present results and conclusions.
  • 1.2. first paragraph is repeated.
  • 2.1. First two paragraphs already presented in page 2.
  • Authors affirm that "The overall functioning principle of the proposed model in this work, is to a certain extent inspired by the previously presented risk management process steps, defined by the ISO 31000:2018, and particularly addresses the ambiguity project risk". Maybe the model generate knowledge but does it follow steps propossed by this standard??
  • From my point of view the big problem of this paper is that methodology is not presented. Authors affirm that use surveys (who designed, why only one question, why this question, has it been validated....) or observation (who observes, when....)
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