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Dr Joana Geraldi
9-11 Torrington Place
Dr Joana Geraldi profile picture
  • Honorary Senior Research Associate
  • The Bartlett School of Sustainable Construction
  • Faculty of the Built Environment

Dr Joana Geraldi holds a position as lecturer at the Bartlett School of Construction and Project Management at University College London. She studied engineering management (engenharia de producao) at UFSCar, Brazil, and earned her PhD in project management from the University of Siegen, Germany. During her PhD, Joana worked as wissenschaflicher Mitarbeiter (similar to lecturer position) at University of Siegen, teaching management and project management to engineering students, and working closely together with engineering organisations in several research projects with students. She organised international symposium and promoted relationships with professional associations such as VDMA. After her PhD, Joana joined the International Centre for Programme Management at Cranfield School of Management (SOM), UK. The centre works at the interface between research and practice, and is supported by HP, following SOM's vision: putting knowledge into practice. 

Today, Joana teaches on the Undergraduate and Postgraduate courses at the Bartlett School of Construction and Project Management, and continues to conduct robust research together with practitioners and for practice, in an attempt to improve our conceptual understanding of the management for projects. 

Research Summary

Joana's research focuses primarily on the management for projects. Projects are all around us and have become a widely used vehicle to deliver change and create value in the society, be it the implementation of strategic change or the delivery of aid after a natural catastrophe. Some go as far as to argue that projects are our current unit of economic action. 

Joana's current research interest lies in creating the context for projects. As more organizations act and organise through projects, they need to develop strategies, organizational capabilities and a culture that supports projects, including a robust portfolio management, excellent HR able to assign the appropriate people to different projects, good practices and routines that enable project managers to be more effective, without bureaucratising their work. For example, how can the research councils manage their portfolio of research projects (ensure relevant themes are addressed, by excellent people, with results that impact society) and help academics to manage research projects, without creating excessive bureaucracy. 

Her complementary areas of research are the development of project thinking and Project History. She has also worked on project complexity, flexibility, quality, programme management, alternative management principles to waterfall project management (e.g. agile, experimentation, parallel development), and alternative project ‘routines’ and practices, development of visualisations to enable the management of projects and enhance decision making.

Joana believes that there is room to create a more fruitful conversation between theory and practice, developing robust and relevant research for the development of our understanding of management practice but also for managers to use in practice. Research should turn into a dialogue between academics and practitioners. Joana has worked closely together with companies such as MAN Ferrostaal, ThyssenKrupp Uhde, Voith Paper and HP. 

Joana's research has led to various publications in journals including IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, International Journal of Project Management and International Journal of Operations and Production Management. She was awarded the Herbert Walton Award 2008 (APM Award for the best PhD in project management) and IPMA Young Researcher Award 2008.

Teaching Summary

Joana teaches regular courses in general management and organisational behaviour for undergraduate students, as well as specialised courses on programme management and practices for value creation and delivery in project contexts (developing working solutions over meeting requirements) for master and MBA students. She teaches at UCL Bartlett School of Construction and Project Management and Cranfield School of Management. In her lectures, Joana attempts to balance robust theoretical understanding of management and organisational theory with practical situations, experimental learning, project stories, case studies and debates.

01-AUG-2010 Lecturer Bartlett School of Construction and Project Management University College London, United Kingdom
15-APR-2008 – 31-JUL-2010 Senior Research Fellow International Centre for Programme Management Cranfield School of Management, United Kingdom
01-JUL-2003 – 31-MAR-2008 Wissenschafter Mitarbeiter (Lecturer/Research Fellow) Management of International Projects Faculty of Mechanical Engineering,University of Siegen, Germany
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