CorMod: a causal mapping approach to identifying project development risk

A. Al-Shehab, Robert Hughes, Graham Winstanley

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapterpeer-review


Software development is widely acknowledged to be a process prone to failure. We argue that there is thus a need for improved project risk management frameworks and tools. Further, a coherent, concise and accessible risk model can be useful to project development team members in capturing disparate perceptions of project risk and providing a common basis for its analysis, prediction and mitigation. This paper proposes a core model that forms a reasoned foundation for the management process, and which can be extended on a project-to-project basis. This ‘Core-Model’ is based on cognitive and causal maps. The Core-Model has been applied experimentally to two case studies: a) the evaluation of the performance of a completed project; and b) an attempt at predicting the outcome of a new and ongoing project. The use of causal mapping techniques resulted in the added value of intuitive and interactive visualization of the interrelations between project components and of the propagation of risk through chains of cause and effect.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCD-ROM/online proceedings of the European and Mediterranean conference on information systems (EMCIS) 2006, 6-7 July, Costa Blanca, Alicante, Spain
EditorsZ. Irani, O.D. Sarikas, J. Llopis, R. Gonzalez, J. Gasco
ISBN (Print)1902316460
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • Software development, Cognitive and causal maps, Risk management.


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