Network Meeting Krakow
Monday 12 October 2015 - Tuesday 13 October 2015
The 19th NETLIPSE Network Meeting took place in Kraków, Poland on the 12th and 13th of October 2015. First we would like to thank our partner, the General Directorate for National Roads and Motorways (GDDKiA) in Poland, which has been so kind to cooperate with us in organising this Network Meeting for NETLIPSE.
The Network Meeting in snowy Kraków was opened by Per-Olov Karlsson, NETLIPSE Chairman. The programme of these two days was filled with interesting topics in the field of project management, with a special focus on safety and collaboration. The 32 registered participants represented 11 different countries in Europe.
In the first presentation, Monika Milwicz, Deputy Director of GDDKiA, introduced the main challenge and opportunities within the extreme changing Polish road map. The improvement programme of the Polish highways started in 2007 and is expected to continue to 2025. Some of the contract are PPP, which led to questions about the risk handling.
Małgorzata Dąbrowska, Project Management Team for the S7 expressway Koszwały (GDDKiA), explained the assessment methodology in an engineering contract. This methodology was applied for the contract, which was signed last Friday. It will be clear that there are a lot of (sub)criteria to measure the quality of a engineer in addition to the lowest price.
Andrzej Kobuszewski, Head of Traffic Management Systems Division (GDDKiA), introduced us to the world of ITS (Intelligent Transport Systems). These systems could solve the Polish problem with respect to the fact that lorries stop on the highways, because of strict rules for their maximum allowed driving hours and the overcrowded parking lots. This IT-component adds complexity to infrastructure projects, that Poland (and the rest of Europe) has to deal with.
IPAT Assessor Stuart Baker, UK Department for Transport, presented the main results and interesting features of the last IPAT (using the Infrastructure Project Assessment Tool) in the project Stockholm Metro Expansion project. Independently of the results/conclusions, he emphasized the great way of learning he experienced as an assessor. There is no education or training for many functions most of the experienced project leaders have, so this IPAT assessment is a learning opportunity.
Next, one of the main topics was discussed: collaboration/cooperation. Two different perspectives were given, where first Willem de Graaf (Rijkswaterstaat) elaborates on the method of ‘Bouwreflectie’ (building reflection). In principle, two independent observers are appointed to give feedback to the project teams of the client as well as the contractor in the execution of a contract. This includes regular feedback in terms of attitude, behaviour, communication and cooperation. It provide a systematic approach to evaluated cooperation.
In addition to Willem’s presentation, Alexandra Söderblom-Stassais (Project Manager Trafikverket) and Jenny Johansson (Consultant Project Manager) explained their previous issues within the client-contractor setting and the way they were able to manage these. Dealing with issues before it becomes a problem, required a change in mind-set. This resulted in discussions with all participants on trust, chemistry and mind-set. Trust in this way is appointed as social capital and defined in three ways: (1) do what you promise to do; (2) do not abuse the vulnerable position of the other party and (3) act predictable for the other party. One way or another, there are multiple ways to create a climate to discuss the status of your cooperation (agree to disagree and take away the blame game).
As senior advisor of Trafikverket, Per-Olov Karlsson introduced the topic of cost control of large projects based on the successive principle. With his described method, they were able to force a huge cost reduction by considering the following topics: cost estimates, technical solutions and commercial issues (procurement). Within this systematic approach for cost reduction the possible consequences are plotted against the possible cost reduction.
Paul Janssen, Project Director Rotterdamsebaan in The Netherlands, presented his approach to procure his project partly on the basis of sustainability. Five sub factors were defined to bridge the gap between theory and practice on the topic of sustainability: landmark function, noise reduction, reduction of NOx, use of materials and energy.
Erik-Stig Jørgensen (Vejdirektoratet) informed us about the progress of his CEDR research on public procurement of innovation, where two possibilities are in the race to become case studies: dimmable lighting and reduce-reducing surface. Goal is to cooperate across borders with a joint procurement strategy for innovation. This is also positive for private companies to be able to multiply their solution.
Last of the first day was Leszek Staśto, Project Management Consultant, about the modernization of the power utilities for supplying the railways (MUZa) in Poland. Main lessons were the actively participation and support from the management board and clear and unbiased responsibilities within the organisation. In the end, he shared his ten rules for proper project management with the group.
After the official programme, some of the delegates had the courage to challenge Kraków’s weather during the very interesting guided walking tour. The rest found other transportation means towards our lovely dinner this evening.
The second day started with an energetic presentation by Hans Ruijter and Per Rydberg about the Dutch – Swedish partnership between Rijkswaterstaat and Trafikverket. This cooperation is considered as a NETLIPSE spin-off and includes for example a trainee-exchange and the introduction of an project academy in Sweden. This academy focuses on programmes for junior and senior project managers.
As an addition the previous topic, Pau Lian Staal, NETLIPSE Programme Director, presented the current plan for the Project Leader Seminars. This plan is a new activity in addition to the current academies in the individual countries for knowledge sharing by discussing relevant project management topics across borders in a one-day seminar. A first pilot seminar on the topic of ‘contracting’ will be planned in the near future on request of Statens Vegvesen, the Norwegian Road Administration.
Ivana Burcar-Dunović, University of Zagreb, presented several interesting researches on project management, as discussed in the first IPMA Mega Projects Group in her presentation. This includes research by Caroline Lemoine, Konrad Spang, John Pelton, Simon Henley, Harry Dimitriou, Mauro Mancini, Hugo Priemus and Marcel Hertogh.
In a brief interactive presentation, Tom Kremers, NETLIPSE Project Manager, showed the current performance of NETLIPSE online. Conclusion is that NETLIPSE should be more active in sharing knowledge online to improve the interaction in between Network Meetings and to promote NETLIPSE online even more.
Marcel Hertogh, professor at Delft University, discussed the lessons learnt from the recent evaluation of Sluiskiltunnel in The Netherlands. This evaluation is accessible by clicking on the following link (http://www.cob.nl/kennisbank/webshop/artikel/evaluatie-sluiskiltunnel.html only in Dutch). He briefly elaborated on the following five themes and emphasized the latter: organisational structure, collaboration, tunnel technical installations, knowledge and safety. He introduced the bow tie model for safety, where there is focus on prevention as well as mitigation. Conclusion to his story is clear: safety is a choice!
Last, but not least, all participants joined the workshop to reflect on the previous NETLIPSE research results. The best practices of 2008 were evaluated and assessed to what extent do we still think they are good practices and to identify the current challenges in the field of project management of large infrastructure projects. The gathered information will be input for the next NETLIPSE publication that will be presented at the 20th Network Meeting in London on the 18th and 19th of April 2016, marking 10 years of NETLIPSE.
We give our thanks to all NETLIPSE participants in Kraków and hope to see you all in London in 6 months!
NETLIPSE Management Team