The analysis of risk and the development of risk management processes have come a long way over the last 10 years, even since the late 1990s. Hence the need for a second edition of Chapman and Ward's Project Risk Management, first published in 1997.
They not only continue to push back the boundaries, Chapman has also been involved in the development of work aimed at practitioners—PRAM (Association for Project Management) and RAMP (Institution of Civil Engineers and Faculty/ Institute of Actuaries). They importantly make comparisons between their work and both PRAM and RAMP, as well as with the Project Management Institute's PMBOK 2000. They have developed and named the generic framework SHAMPU (Shape, Harness, and Manage Project Uncertainty) process and compare it with PRAM, RAMP, and PBOK 2000. I suggest that the authors of these three will want to use SHAMPU as a challenge to their own further thinking.
Chapman and Ward say that their book is largely about how to achieve effective and efficient risk management in the context of a single project. Determining what can be simplified, and what it is appropriate to simplify, is not a simple matter! In their final chapter they adopt a corporate perspective on project risk management processes. Thus they mirror the work already under way by the ICE/Actuaries team who have embarked on the development of STRATrisk, designed to enable prime decision makers to deal more systematically with the most important opportunities and threats to their business.
They quote Walsham who has suggested a management framework which views organizational change as a jointly analytical, educational and political process where important interacting dimensions are the context, content and process of the change. They conclude by stating that 'most project risk is generated by the way different people perceive issues and react to them.' Those of us who have driven such projects as the Hong Kong Mass Transit Railway (very successfully) and the Channel Tunnel (less so) will say 'hear, hear' to all of that.
Professor Tony M. Ridley Imperial College London Past President, Institution of Civil Engineers
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