Feedback in dynamic decision making: an experiment in software project management
Goodwin, Robert Donald
Abdel-Hamid, Tarek K.
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Software project development has been plagued with an infamous reputation for cost overruns, late deliveries, poor reliability and users' dissatisfaction. Much of this blame has been placed on the manner in which software development projects are managed. The System Dynamics Model of Software Project Management is a quantitative model of software project dynamics that is attempting to gain some valuable insight into the managerial side of developing software systems. The objective of this thesis is to use the System Dynamics Model's gaming interface to investigate the effects of feedback on software project managers. Specifically, subjects were provided with either feedforward, outcome feedback, or cognitive feedback to determine which feedback form, if any, improved the subjects performance when confronted with a complex dynamic task, such as software project management. The results show that subjects in the cognitive feedback condition achieve a higher level of performance than those in either the feedforward or outcome feedback conditions.
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