Title of PhD:
Embedding the local within the global: Firm-based analysis of competitiveness within the shipbuilding industry
Prof. John Bryson
Dr. Yufeng Zhang
Shipbuilding, often seen as a megaproject, has many uncertainties in the process. The particular character of the project is that it is mainly specifically engineered for a particular place/space, such as railway construction, bridge, or tunnel. What was missing in the literature, however, is the type of project that are dealing with bespoke and standarised product at the same time – which are found within the shipbuilding industry. The different between a bespoke and customized project lies in the key dimensions, which are (1) scale of operation, (2) duration of project completion, and (3) the stability of production networks.
Focusing on those elements, we are interested to understand (1) why some project-based firms are more competitive than the others, (2) how resources are applied to overcome project uncertainties and become the source of competitive advantage, and (3) what makes their competitive advantage sustainable. The aim is to identify the approaches being used by the yards to deal with project issues whilst, at the same time, producing high value products and services.