Megaproject Management Tool

by Virginia Fairweather, Editor; Civil Engineering, 345 E. 47th St., New York, NY 10017,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1988, Vol. 58, Issue 5, Pg. 72-74

Document Type: Feature article


Program management oversight is an administration innovation in the water and wastewater treatment field. The method is increasingly being used when a public entity takes on a project beyond its resources. Most projects that require program managers involve public funds, usually federal, and have strict deadlines for completion. These are most often to assure compliance with an EPA deadline to improve water quality. An outside firm is retained to oversee the project, which task often includes selection of consultants, designers and contractors. Usually the program manager works along with the public department engineers and staff, and the method allows the public body to gain expertise overnight, to gain staff without having to hire and then fire when the project is completed. Others mention that it is easier to be demanding with outside consultants, and that accounting procedures with an outside entity have advantages. Several such projects are described and participants from both the private and the public owner side outline pros and cons of the method. Most mention the fact that civil service hiring procedures do not allow for swift hiring of sufficient qualified staff.

Subject Headings: Consulting services | Project management | Managers | Water quality | Infrastructure | Recruiting and hiring | Waste management | Innovation

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