Agile principles in the large

My current research interests are related to understanding the scalability of agile principles in large-scale distributed projects. The core principles we study are autonomy, self-management and self-governance. In April this year we have started a new research project looking into team autonomy in multi-team multi-site projects. The first study conducted indicates that teams receive different degree of freedom to decide on their ways of working and who can be on the team, while the decisions regarding the overall direction are taken by the line management without involving the teams. One of the studied companies strives for alignment, standardizes the “best practices” across teams, while the other delegates such decisions and cross-team coordination to so called communities formed by the teams themselves.

How much can your teams decide? What is aligned and what is not? Care to share your experience – comment here or contact me directly via email.

Finally, I remembered the almost forgotten work that we have done together with Nils Brede Moe and Pär Ågerfalk by putting together a collection of case studies on agile principles in distributed projects in the book – Agility across time and space published by Springer in 2010. Our work still seems useful and applicable, and is not doing that bad statistically 🙂

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