Succeeding Programmes, Failed Projects: A Lexicographical Analysis of a Disputed Semantic Terrain

Molloy, Eamonn and Stewart, A (2013) Succeeding Programmes, Failed Projects: A Lexicographical Analysis of a Disputed Semantic Terrain. Succeeding Programmes, Failed Projects: A Lexicographical Analysis of a Disputed Semantic Terrain, 31 (1). pp. 80-89.

Abstract

This paper proposes that projects and programmes can be empirically distinguished by the way in which they are associated with expectations and evaluations of success and failure. Support for the proposition is grounded in analysis of over sixteen hundred examples of occurrences of the terms ‘project’ and ‘programme’ with ‘success’ and ‘failure’ derived from the Oxford English Corpus (OEC). The OEC is a structured and coded database of over two billion words of naturally occurring English collected from the World Wide Web. The analysis highlights that project and programme are each modified by the terms ‘success’ and ‘failure’ in significantly different ways, indicating that they are conceptually distinct phenomena. These findings imply that academics must be cautious in their use of language in investigations of project and programme evaluations, and that practitioners should consider the implications of considering programmes as ‘scaled‐up’ projects, given their propensity to different evaluation outcomes.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Project, Programme, Success, Failure, Lexicography
Date Deposited: 09 Apr 2019 09:01
Last Modified: 09 Apr 2019 09:01
URI: http://eureka.sbs.ox.ac.uk/id/eprint/7358

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