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Enhancing the supplier's non-contractual project relationships with designers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)923-936
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Project Management
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


Project delivery involves networks of customers, contractors, sub-contractors, suppliers, and designers. Strong interorganizational relationships are considered relevant to project performance. Previous research has focused on contractual relationships in direct supply chains, with little attention to suppliers and their non-contractual relationships. This study develops and tests a framework of relationship strength and its antecedents in the non-contractual relationship between suppliers and designers as third parties in construction projects. The intent is to identify the key factors relevant to enhancing the supplier's non-contractual relationships with designers. The results reveal the supplier's activeness and technical capability as antecedents to trust, and supplier's technical capability and supplier-designer cooperation beyond project boundaries as antecedents to commitment. The different antecedents of trust and commitment imply alternative pathways for strengthening non-contractual relationships in construction projects, thereby deviating from activities in contractual relationships. Further research is proposed on other types of third parties and other antecedents of commitment.


  • Commitment, Interorganizational relationship, Non-contractual relationship, Project networks, Relationship strength, Trust

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Field of science, Statistics Finland

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