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PhD Defence - Julie Bladt Goodall

Shaping a sense of project – an inquiry into rethinking project management education at the universities.

29.05.2020 | Tina Pabst

Dato tor 25 jun
Tid 10:00 13:00
Sted Zoom Meeting

Assessment committee:


Sara Grex, Associate Professor, School of Engineering, Technical University of Denmark

Chris Ivory, Professor, Faculty of Business and Law Anglia Ruskin University, UK

Per Svejvig, Associate Professor, Department of Management, Aarhus University, DK (Chair)



Main supervisor:

Timo Leimbach, Associate Professor, Department of Digital Design and Information Studies, School of Communication and Culture, Aarhus University. 


The defence is public, and everybody is
; the defence, scheduled for a maximum of three hours, will be held in English. 


The dissertation will be available to borrow for reading before the defence in a digital version. If you wish to read the dissertation, contact jig@cc.au.dk before 24 June at noon.


This dissertation is the product of three years of inquiry into the potentials for rethinking project management education at the universities. The dissertation formulates the problem space of the inquiry as set within a growing projectification of our working and private lives, the rethink project management research agenda which calls for the development of the reflective practitioner, rather than trained technician, and the situated sense making of university educators as they are tasked with providing research-based education within project management. Within this frame, the dissertation seeks to answer the following research question:


How can project management education be rethought at the universities towards reflective practice?

With the overall intent of learning what to do about the problematic situation, my stance of inquiry is actuated through the identity of the bricoleur into a research design that is both pragmatic and critical. Through three main phases, the dissertation investigates first the disciplinary context of the problem in terms of research area and educational landscape, then explores situated course development in three case studies by way of action research and collaborative inquiry, and finally, conceptually discusses potentials for rethinking the current understanding of reflective practice and concurrent model of development.

The dissertation contributes, initially, with a characterization of the research directions and educational formats of project management education. The case studies provide exemplars of the motivations for, as well as processes and outcomes of, situated ambitions for rethinking project management courses at the universities. Finally, the proposal of an alternative development model that configures reflective practice, not as staged and linear, but as multi-modal and integrative, and dependent on a becoming mindset, is argued to provide a more malleable frame to support educators in their rethinking efforts.

The dissertation attempts to enact the reflexivity towards which it aims to contribute, through explicating the assumptions and roles of the researcher, as well as through a modesty in truth claims and a formulation of findings in ultimately open-ended ways.

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Ph.d.-forsvar, Afd. for Digital Design og Informationsvidenskab