Managing risk in software development projects: a case study

Prasanta K. Dey*, Jason Kinch, Stephen O. Ogunlana

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose - The main objective of the paper is to develop a risk management framework for software development projects from developers' perspective. Design/methodology/approach - This study uses a combined qualitative and quantitative technique with the active involvement of stakeholders in order to identify, analyze and respond to risks. The entire methodology has been explained using a case study on software development project in a public sector organization in Barbados. Findings - Analytical approach to managing risk in software development ensures effective delivery of projects to clients. Research limitations/implications - The proposed risk management framework has been applied to a single case. Practical implications - Software development projects are characterized by technical complexity, market and financial uncertainties and competent manpower availability. Therefore, successful project accomplishment depends on addressing those issues throughout the project phases. Effective risk management ensures the success of projects. Originality/value - There are several studies on managing risks in software development and information technology (IT) projects. Most of the studies identify and prioritize risks through empirical research in order to suggest mitigating measures. Although they are important to clients for future projects, these studies fail to provide any framework for risk management from software developers' perspective. Although a few studies introduced framework of risk management in software development, most of them are presented from clients' perspectives and very little effort has been made to integrate this with the software development cycle. As software developers absorb considerable amount of risks, an integrated framework for managing risks in software development from developers' perspective is needed. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)284-303
Number of pages20
JournalIndustrial Management and Data Systems
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2007


  • risk management
  • software engineering


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