A contingent approach to strategy and tactics in project planning

John M Bryson, André L. Delbecq

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


A contingent approach to strategic and tactical choices in project planning is presented. Choices regarding planning phases and tactics are seen as dependent on planning goals and contextual variables. A simulation was designed to pool the judgments of experienced planners on how planning strategy and tactics should change as a situation changes so as to increase the likelihood of planning success. Eight panels were formulated to examine eight different situations. The next step in the research is to determine whether following the pooled judgments does lead to greater planning success.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)167-179
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of the American Planning Association
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1979

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We would like to thank Jerome L. Kaufman, Elizabeth Howe, Leo Jakobson, and W. Joseph Heffernan, all of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Donald A. Krueckeberg and two referees of this Journal for their helpful comments. In addition, we are most grateful to the more than 120 practicing planners who participated in this research in one way or another. Partial research support from the Graduate School of Business at the University of Wisconsin-Madison is most gratefully acknowledged. What readability the paper has is due principally to the efforts of Barbara C. Crosby. The authors, of course, remain solely responsible for the paper’s content.


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