IT project portfolio management (IT PPM) has evolved into a significant area of research interest, but we know little about IT PPM practices in public sector organizations. Therefore this article investigates decision-making processes in the IT PPM practices of local governments, and discusses how these practices match the normative advice proposed by the IT PPMliterature.We rely on decision-making theories togetherwith case-studies of four Danish local governments.We find that politics, intuition and coincidence play a crucial role in IT PPM decisionmaking, while technical rationality (as proposed by the IT PPM literature) plays a minor role. Our account also reveals how the decision-making practices create IT portfolio problems and in some aspects is considered to have a negative impact on the outcome of e-government investments. Our analysis and previous research into decision-making allows us to argue that implementing textbook-IT PPM is difficult because it relies on decision-making ideals that are incompatiblewith organizational contexts and individual behavior in these organizations. Instead of radically changing decision-making styles, the organizations might be better off improving IT PPM practice within the boundaries of their existing decision-making styles, and the IT PPM literature might improve support for practitioners by incorporating other decision-making styles besides technical rationality.
Government Information Quarterly, 2014, Vol 31, Issue 3
E-government; IT portfolio management; Decision-making; Local Government; Case study