Explicating the dynamics of project capabilities


One of the APM Series of Research Summaries drawing on original research published in the International Journal of Project Management.

The paper aims to guide future research on project capabilities by providing three contributions to the topic:
• Both innovative and routine project capabilities should be developed to deal with the stable and rapidly changing conditions often facing an organisation.
• The difference between project capabilities at an operational level and dynamic capabilities at a strategic level is distinguished, to show that dynamic capabilities determine when and how a firm should adapt their project capabilities.
• The relationship between dynamic and project capabilities is reciprocal, meaning that the behaviour of project capabilities can predict the future behaviour of dynamic capabilities.

The paper also provides:
• Background and theoretical perspectives on project capabilities;
• A review of the main contributions to dynamic capabilities research since the authors’ original work on project capabilities;
• Suggestions for the concept of project capabilities to be reformulated to include recent advances in research on organisational ambidexterity;
• Several directions for future research on project capabilities.

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