Purpose – Out of all the countries that rose in a mercurial fashion, after the Second World War, the People ' s Republic of China (in short, China) has emerged as an all-pervasive dominant nation in the world. It has been giving a stiff competition to the well-developed western nations in all facets of its national growth. Despite the fact that work extracted under duress will not excel in qualitative terms, almost all the large projects that the country has undertaken have been of spectacular success raising every nation ' s eyebrows. At the same time, it is very glaring to note, that despite India too enjoying similar infrastructure growth facilities, and as the other fastest growing economy of the world, has not been able to keep pace with China ' s growth in equal proportions. In order to unearth the causal factors which are aiding China, when compared with its nearest rival India, for its major successes in implementing large infrastructure projects, an empirical, investigative study has been undertaken by the Author. The study spanned nearly 20 years. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach – This is an empirical study which is the first of its kind to probe into both China and India to compare the success outcomes for large projects. The methodology used was unstructured interviews and administration of a scheduled instrument designed for the study – bilingual (English/Chinese) for the Chinese population and in English for Indian population. Findings – The study has revealed that, given the same kind of infrastructure facilities for both China and India, China has been able to move their projects onto successful completion, almost staying within the time and cost resources. However, in India, as is the case in most of the other nations of the world, there has always been both time and cost over-runs. The empirical findings conclusively prove that three sociocultural factors in China play a significant role in determining the success outcomes of Chinese projects. Research limitations/implications – China being a staunchly communistic country, with a close-knit society operating, gaining access to investigative research information has been really challenging for the author. Gaining access to sample populations has been a daunting task, and the researcher had to first get into the “out-group” of the Chinese “wu lun” relationship to elicit responses from an ethnic Chinese sample population. Practical implications – Being an empirically proven study, the results have wider ramifications for all global nations, especially in knowing why the Chinese are more successful in all their large projects? The study opens up new vistas to other global nations who can emulate the Chinese model of project management. Further, the study also throws open the doors for exploratory as well as post-doctoral research studies in this area. Originality/value – This is a maiden empirical study in China and in India. Wide-ranging investigative studies may follow, once this study ' s results are widely disseminated to the world. The author feels that the Chinese model when adopted by other countries in the world may result in both time and cost savings for projects. This may in turn result in increased economic benefits to those nations.
Asian Education and Development Studies – Emerald Publishing
Published: May 6, 2014