Public infrastructure is an essential ingredient in the socio-economic development of emerging countries. How can the performance of these projects be managed within the framework of a wider stakeholder vision? Below are some answers based on research carried out on major roadwork projects in Senegal.

Research Impact(s)

While the majority (60%) of major road projects undertaken between 2007 and 2016 have failed to meet the performance criteria set at the outset (deadline, cost and quality), this thesis proposes an assessment model designed to:

  • broaden the range of stakeholders involved in projects, which are often limited to the project owner and the funding body (it is desirable to include the design office, the project manager, the contractor, the users and the local residents),
  • identify the roles of these different stakeholders and relate them to the stages of the road project (identification, preparation, implementation and evaluation),
  • link the roles with a range of performance criteria (deadline, cost, quality, satisfaction of users and local residents, and environmental protection) approached from the perspective of effectiveness, efficiency and relevance.

Managing the performance of infrastructure projects requires a broad perspective on stakeholders to understand how and when they interact with the project. In addition, it is recommended to go beyond the “golden triangle” measurement of performance (quality, deadline, cost) and include criteria relating to users, local residents and sustainable development.

Research foundations

This doctoral thesis is grounded in the literature on project management and performance criteria. It follows the thinking of the researcher Roger Atkinson who, as early as 1999, emphasised the need to go beyond the traditional vision of project performance to include more diversity in the criteria.  


The research methodology is based on the following two stages: (i) a quantitative analysis of the results (deadline, cost, quality) of 41 major road projects carried out by the Agency for Road Works and Management from 2007 to 2016; (ii) a qualitative approach based on 34 semi-structured interviews with representatives of the road project stakeholders. The data was processed using Textual Data Analysis (TDA) techniques via Sphinx™ software and visualisation techniques using DataViv™ software.

Further reading

  • Atkinson, R. (1999). Project management: cost, time and quality, two best guesses and a phenomenon, it’s time to accept other success criteria. International Journal of Project Management, 17(6), 337-342.  
  • Barney, J. (1991). Firm resources and sustained competitive advantage. Journal of Management, 17(1), 99-120.
  • Freeman, R. E. (2010). Strategic management: A stakeholder approach. Cambridge University Press.
  • Miller, R., Castonguay, J., & Chebil, F. (2006). La gouvernance des grands projets d’infrastructure publique-Le processus de révision de la qualité (No. 2006rp-23). CIRANO. 29p.

The governance of major public infrastructure projects – the quality review process.

  • Perret, F. L., & Louafa, T. (2008). Créativité et innovation: l’intelligence collective au service du management de projet. Presses Polytechniques et Universitaires Romandes, Lausanne, 351 p.

Creativity and innovation: collective intelligence for project management.

Feedback from panel members

Mr Mohamed Laye is highly involved professionally in a topic that is particularly important to him. He demonstrates this clearly in the first part of the thesis, where he introduces his research question in all its complexity by intelligently explaining it through the literature to which he refers (Pr Lemay, rapporteur).

Professor Mourey considers this thesis to be a high-quality piece of doctoral work and shows that the candidate has mastered the scientific approach. He was very impressed by the large-scale empirical study carried out at AGEROUTE, which highlights the context-specific nature of the research approach.