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Systems Thinking Using SSM and TRIZ for Stakeholder Engagement in Infrastructure Megaprojects

1
Bartlett School of Construction and Project Management, University College London, London WC1E 6BT, UK
2
School of Industrial Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette 47907, IN, USA
3
School of Built Environment, University of Technology Sydney, Ultimo NSW 2007, Australia
4
Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Chennai 600113, India
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 June 2019 / Revised: 6 September 2019 / Accepted: 24 September 2019 / Published: 26 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Systems Thinking in Project Management)
Infrastructure megaprojects straddle multiple stakeholder boundaries who have an interest in the project and are affected by the project. Multiple papers in the literature stress the need for holistic approaches to stakeholder engagement, as existing approaches only address the concerns of the noisy stakeholders. This research proposes an innovative approach in which Soft Systems Methodology (SSM) is used for understanding stakeholder concerns, complemented by the use of Theory of Inventive Problem Solving (TRIZ) for identifying innovative solutions to address conflicting stakeholder goals. The researchers simulated the stakeholder engagement of the Coimbatore metro rail project, in India, through a workshop setting in a classroom to check the feasibility of this approach for stakeholder engagement. The 15 participants of the workshop were divided into four groups representing different stakeholders of the project. Data was collected through participant observations by the authors and oral feedback from the participants. The results show that while SSM helped to capture the concerns and goals of each stakeholder, TRIZ helped to identify and dissolve conflicts among these goals through innovative solutions. The theoretical, practical and pedagogical contributions are highlighted. View Full-Text
Keywords: soft systems methodology; SSM; theory of inventive problem solving; TRIZ; stakeholder engagement; infrastructure projects soft systems methodology; SSM; theory of inventive problem solving; TRIZ; stakeholder engagement; infrastructure projects
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ninan, J.; Phillips, I.; Sankaran, S.; Natarajan, S. Systems Thinking Using SSM and TRIZ for Stakeholder Engagement in Infrastructure Megaprojects. Systems 2019, 7, 48. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/systems7040048

AMA Style

Ninan J, Phillips I, Sankaran S, Natarajan S. Systems Thinking Using SSM and TRIZ for Stakeholder Engagement in Infrastructure Megaprojects. Systems. 2019; 7(4):48. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/systems7040048

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ninan, Johan, Ibukun Phillips, Shankar Sankaran, and Swaminathan Natarajan. 2019. "Systems Thinking Using SSM and TRIZ for Stakeholder Engagement in Infrastructure Megaprojects" Systems 7, no. 4: 48. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/systems7040048

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