Exploring Team Effectiveness in Systems Engineering Construction Projects: Explanations Why Some SE Teams Are More Effective than Others

Robin S. de Graaf*, Michiel L.A. Loonen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The use of teams in systems engineering (SE) projects has become standard practice in many industries. Yet little attention is given in SE literature to explaining why some SE teams are more effective than others. In this study, four civil engineering projects were studied in which SE was used. Two projects were considered effective and two moderately effective. It was explored whether the differences in effectiveness could be explained from the characteristics of the teams. The Team Diagnostic Survey was used to analyse and compare the teams. The findings demonstrate that the Team Diagnostic Survey was able to discriminate between the effective and moderately effective projects and appeared to be a relevant instrument for analysing teams in civil engineering SE projects. The study also revealed that the process of actively exchanging and using team members' knowledge and skills explains for a substantial part the differences in effectiveness of the projects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)687-702
Number of pages16
JournalSystems Research and Behavioral Science
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2018



  • construction
  • effectiveness
  • systems engineering
  • team
  • team diagnostic survey

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