The Last-Planner-System’s impact on project culture

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Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate the Last-Planner-System’s impact on project cultures in terms of partnering. Design/methodology/approach: A case study was performed using multiple data gathering approaches. The project cultures of three projects not applying the Last-Planner-System were compared with three projects that apply the Last-Planner-System. In total, 30 participants were involved in the study. Semi-structured interviews were held and analysed by applying qualitative content analysis. Also, the “organizational culture assessment instrument”, which belongs to the “competing values framework”, was used by means of an online survey. Findings: The Last-Planner-System leads to increased levels of mutual understanding and control about the tasks and issues of the other parties. This detailed overview leads towards a more distinguished evaluation of the trustworthiness of individuals. This does not necessarily lead to a partnering project culture. Originality/value: The contribution to research is that higher levels of transparency and mutual understanding do not necessarily lead to a high level of trust. Rather, transparency could be seen as a controlling mechanism that leads to better-founded estimations about the trustworthiness of others in the project.