Published February 2013.

Introduction | Our Response | Wikipedia Definitions of Project and Operations Management
Wikipedia Definition of Business Operations | What Did We Learn?
Wikipedia Examples of Projects and Operations | What Did We Learn?
Differences at the Work Level | Conclusion

Wikipedia Examples of Projects and Operations


"A project in business and science is typically defined as a collaborative enterprise, frequently involving research or design, that is carefully planned to achieve a particular aim.[20] Projects can be further defined as temporary rather than permanent social systems that are constituted by teams within or across organizations to accomplish particular tasks under time constraints."[21]

Wikipedia goes further and picks out two particular types of project.

School and university project[22]

"At school, educational institute and independent work that is involved in a normal essay assignment. It requires students to undertake their own fact-finding and analysis, either from library/internet research or from gathering data empirically. The written report that comes from the project is usually in the form of a dissertation, which will contain sections on the project's inception, methods of inquiry, analysis, findings and conclusions ... ."[23]

Engineering project[24]

"Engineering projects are, in many countries, specifically defined by legislation, which requires that such projects should be carried out by registered engineers and/or registered engineering companies. That is, companies with license to carry out such works as design and construction of buildings, power plants, industrial facilities, installation and erection of electrical grid networks, transportation infrastructure and the like.

The scope of the project is specified in a contract between the owner and the engineering and construction parties. As a rule, an engineering project is broken down into design and construction phases. The outputs of the design process are drawings, calculations, and all other design documentation necessary to carry out the next phase. The next phase would normally be sending the project plans to a developer who will then help construct the plans (building)."[25]

Note that this limited description ignores any of the work in the preparation of the contract and all the work that precedes it.


Wikipedia does not offer a description of "operations" on its own, but only in the context of specific fields such as Business operations (described above); Military operations (deployment of field forces); Rail transport operations (the control of a rail system), Commercial operations (the conduct of activities in return for remuneration or other valuable consideration) and so on.

What Did We Learn?  What Did We Learn?

19. See
20. Oxford English Dictionary
21. Manning, Stephan A Structuration Perspective
22. Ibid
23. Thomas, G: How to do your research project, Sage Publications Inc., 2009
24. Ibid
25. E.g. civil
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