Development of simulation games to improve the practice of program management
The complex nature of program management creates a very difficult task for those responsible for the allocation of resources, program structuring, and the overall program outcome. Decisions are often made in the face of considerable uncertainty. Since the performance of managers is frequently judged upon near-term results, managers may not have sufficient incentive to contemplate the long-term effects of their decisions. Across many industries, complex large-scale programs have a tendency to fail; these failures can often be attributed to poor program management. Current training methods frequently lack interactive learning, rendering them less useful due to the importance of heuristic information in the practice of program management. This project develops multiple educational simulations that give program managers the opportunity to experiment, to test their assumptions, and to learn from their mistakes in a risk-free environment. By showing users the relationship between decisions and outcomes on a project, the simulations will enhance the current educational practices and enable program managers to make better decisions in the future.