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The Big Dig – Learning From a Mega Project

160106 - Alok Kaushik 80x

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Alok Kaushik

04 November 2016 – Mumbai, India – A new resource has been added to the PM World Library related to Project Management Learning drawn from the Big Dig, a mega project in Boston. The new resource is an article titled “The Big Dig: Learning from a Mega Project” that analyses the complexity of the project and draws key learning from it.

This article was written by Virginia Greiman, an assistant professor at Boston University and former deputy general counsel and risk manager of Boston’s Central Artery/Tunnel Project. The article was published in the ASK Magazine, a publication from the space agency NASA which is designed for program/project managers and engineers to share expertise and lessons learned with fellow practitioners across the Agency.

Boston’s Central Artery/Tunnel Project, commonly known as the Big Dig, was the largest, most complex, and most technically challenging highway project in American history. It was also the most expensive highway project in the US, and famous for its cost increases.

The article talks about the causes of cost escalation, design and construction risks associated with the project, and the value of 'Partnering' in mega projects. It concludes with drawing most important lessons about the partnering learned from the Big Dig experience and along with takeaways for management of future mega projects.

This article is a must read for project and program managers associated with mega projects. It would also be an interesting topic of discussion in general for anyone associated with project/program management.

To access this new resource, go to the Major Projects section of the PMWL at, click on “Transportation - Infrastructure”, then click on “Tunnels” and scroll down to resource. Must be a registered and logged in library member to access.