Project stakeholder analysis as an environmental interpretation process
International projects face a variety of pressures from their uncertain and complex external stakeholder environments. In order to reduce uncertainty, a project management team builds up interpretations about their environment by conducting stakeholder analysis. This study aims to examine the interpretation processes, through which project management teams come to know their external stakeholder environment. The point of departure for the study is Daft and Weick’s (1984) typology about organizational interpretation modes. The paper identifies and describes distinctive interpretation modes of external stakeholder environments in four international projects. The interpretation modes differ in their stakeholder analysis characteristics. The project managers’ beliefs about the stakeholder environment and the project’s intrusiveness towards its stakeholder environment are hypothesized to be associated with the identified differences in the interpretation modes.