Analyzing the barriers of digital transformation in the project-based organizations of Iran's oil and gas industries

Document Type : Research Article (Original Article)


1 PhD candidate of Information Technolgy Management, Faculty of Management, Islamic Azad University Tehran Central Branch, Tehran, Iran

2 Professor, Faculty of Management and Accounting, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran


Project-Based organizations of Iran's oil and gas industries, as developers of mega projects in oil and gas sector, play a vital role in the economic cycle .In line with the process of digital transformation in other businesses,, digital transformation is also necessary in these organizations and in this direction, they will face many challenges. Therefore, analyzing the barriers to digital transformation and providing practical recommendations are among the goals of this research. First, barriers to digital transformation were extracted from the research literature and analysis of data collected from interviews with experts in this industry, and then the list of barriers to digital transformation was finalized using the fuzzy Delphi technique. In the following, the model of barriers to digital transformation was designed and explained using the interpretative structural modeling method.
In this research, 52 types of barriers to digital transformation in project-based organizations of Iran's oil and gas industries were identified and categorized into 10 main factors. The study of interrelationships between factors shows that environmental factors, unclear vision and inconsistent goals and factors related to the business of a project are among the most influential factors on other barriers, and cyber security and privacy challenges are most dependent on other factors. The findings of the research, by providing information on the barriers to digital transformation and the sequence and mutual relationships between them, provide the necessary insight for key decision makers in order to determine priorities and allocate resources effectively to overcome the barriers to digital transformation.


رضائیان, علی(1380). مدیر عصر اطلاعات. نشریه چشم‌انداز مدیریت بازرگانی دانشگاه شهید بهشتی
رضائیان, علی و باقری، روح الله و حمیدرضا فرتوک زاده ، حمیدرضا. (1396) شناسایی، اولویت‌بندی و الگو‌سازی عوامل شکل‌گیری شبکه‌های دانش در سازمان‌های دانش‌محور با رویکرد ساختاری تفسیری. نشریه علمی و پژوهشی بهبود مدیریت .
رضائیان, علی و مقبل با عرض, عباس و شاهباز, ناصر و مشبکی, اصغر(1400). طراحی مدل تحول سازمانی در مدیریت هزینه مورد زنجیره تأمین گروه صنعتی‌ایران خودرو. نشریه پژوهش های مدیریت در ایران، دانشگاه تربیت مدرس.
صالحی, محمد جواد. (1396). بررسی دفتر مدیریت پروژه در سازمان های پروژه محور صنایع بالادستی نفت و گاز ایران و رابطه آن با موفقیت پروژه . نشریه علمی و پژوهشی بهبود مدیریت.
Agarwal, Rajat, Shankar Chandrasekaran, and Mukund Sridhar. 2016. "Imagining construction’s digital future." McKinsey & Company.
Blanco, Jose Luis, Andrew Mullin, Kaustubh Pandya, and Mukund Sridhar. 2017. "The new age of engineering and construction technology." McKinsey & Company-Capital Projects & Infrastructure.
Borangiu, Theodor, Damien Trentesaux, André Thomas, Paulo Leitão, and Jose Barata. 2019. Digital transformation of manufacturing through cloud services and resource virtualization. Elsevier.
Cheng, Ching-Hsue, and Yin Lin. 2002. "Evaluating the best main battle tank using fuzzy decision theory with linguistic criteria evaluation." European journal of operational research 142 (1): 174-186.
Gong, Cheng, and Vincent Ribiere. 2021. "Developing a unified definition of digital transformation." Technovation 102: 102217.
Ismail, Mariam H, Mohamed Khater, and Mohamed Zaki. 2017. "Digital business transformation and strategy: What do we know so far." Cambridge Service Alliance 10: 1-35.
Jinhua, Y., Maoxin, Q., Hongna, H., Xu, Z., & Xiaoxia, G. (2017). Intelligence–Oil and gas industrial development trend. Oil Forum
Kankanam Gamage, Amila Nayana Kanthi. 2021. "Study of Challenges in Implementing Digital Transformation in Construction Projects." 2021 30 (1): 14.
Koeleman, Jan, Maria João Ribeirinho, David Rockhill, Erik Sjödin, and Gernot Strube. 2019. "Decoding digital transformation in construction." Capital Projects & Infrastructure Practice.
Kohli, Rajiv, and Shawn Johnson. 2011. "Digital Transformation in Latecomer Industries: CIO and CEO Leadership Lessons from Encana Oil & Gas (USA) Inc." MIS Quarterly Executive 10 (4).
Koscheyev, Vadim, Viktoriya Rapgof, and Viktoriya Vinogradova. 2019. "Digital transformation of construction organizations." IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering.
Koseoglu, Ozan, Basak Keskin, and Beliz Ozorhon. 2019. "Challenges and enablers in BIM-enabled digital transformation in mega projects: The Istanbul new airport project case study." Buildings 9 (5): 115.
Lammers, Thorsten, Laura Tomidei, and Andrea Trianni. 2019. "Towards a novel framework of barriers and drivers for digital transformation in industrial supply chains." 2019 Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET).
Linderoth, H. C., Jacobsson, M., & Elbanna, A. (2018). Barriers for digital transformation: the role of industry. Australasian conference on information systems.
Lu, H., Guo, L., Azimi, M., & Huang, K. (2019). Oil and Gas 4.0 era: A systematic review and outlook. Computers in industry, 111, 68-90
Mahmood, Faisal, Abdul Zahid Khan, and Mohammad Bashir Khan. 2019. "Digital organizational transformation issues, challenges and impact: A systematic literature review of a decade." Abasyn University Journal of social sciences 12 (2).
Mangla, Sachin K, Rakesh Raut, Vaibhav S Narwane, and Zuopeng Justin Zhang. 2020. "Mediating effect of big data analytics on project performance of small and medium enterprises." Journal of Enterprise Information Management.
Miterev, Maxim, Mauro Mancini, and Rodney Turner. 2017. "Towards a design for the project-based organization." International Journal of Project Management 35 (3): 479-491.
Olanipekun, Ayokunle O, and Monty Sutrisna. 2021. "Facilitating Digital Transformation in Construction—A Systematic Review of the Current State of the Art." Frontiers in Built Environment: 96.
Parusheva, Silviya. 2019. "Digitalization and Digital Transformation in Construction-Benefits and Challenges." Information and Communication Technologies in Business and Education: 126-134.
Parviainen, Päivi, Maarit Tihinen, Jukka Kääriäinen, and Susanna Teppola. 2017. "Tackling the digitalization challenge: how to benefit from digitalization in practice." International journal of information systems and project management 5 (1): 63-77.
Prebanić, Kristijan Robert, and Mladen Vukomanović. 2021. "Realizing the need for digital transformation of stakeholder management: A systematic review in the construction industry." Sustainability 13 (22): 12690.
Raj, Alok, Gourav Dwivedi, Ankit Sharma, Ana Beatriz Lopes de Sousa Jabbour, and Sonu Rajak. 2020. "Barriers to the adoption of industry 4.0 technologies in the manufacturing sector: An inter-country comparative perspective." International Journal of Production Economics 224: 107546.
Rezaeian, A., Bagheri, R., and Fartoukzadeh, H. 2017. " Identifying, Prioritizing and Modeling Factors of Knowledge Networks Formation in Knowledge-Based Organizations." Journal of Improvement Management, P. 1-24.
Rouse, William B. 2005. "A theory of enterprise transformation." Systems Engineering 8 (4): 279-295.
Saatçioğlu, Ömür Yaşar, Nergis Özispa, and Gökçe T Kök. 2019. "Scrutinizing the barriers that impede industry 4.0 projects: a country-wide analysis for Turkey." In Agile Approaches for Successfully Managing and Executing Projects in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, 294-314. IGI Global.
Salehi Taleshi, M. J., Arbabi, H., and Hosseinalipour, M. 2017. "Examination of Project Management Office in Project-Based Organizations of Iranian Oil and Gas Upstream Industry and Its Relationship to Project Success." Journal of Improvement Management, P. 119-143.
Shahi, Chinmay, and Manish Sinha. 2020. "Digital transformation: challenges faced by organizations and their potential solutions." International Journal of Innovation Science.
Sumer, Levent. 2023. "The Digital Future of the Construction Project Management." Global Joint Conference on Industrial Engineering and Its Application Areas.
Tan, V., Aziz, K. A., & Razavi, S. H. (2022). Data Analytics for Effective Project Management in the Oil and Gas Industry. International Conference on Technology and Innovation Management (ICTIM 2022).
Tangi, Luca, Marijn Janssen, Michele Benedetti, and Giuliano Noci. 2020. "Barriers and drivers of digital transformation in public organizations: results from a survey in the Netherlands." International Conference on Electronic Government.
Tripathi, Shubham, and Manish Gupta. 2021. "Impact of barriers on industry 4.0 transformation dimensions." International Conference on Precision, Meso, Micro and Nan o Engineering (COPEN 2019).
Turner, J Rodney, and Ralf Müller. 2003. "On the nature of the project as a temporary organization." International journal of project management 21 (1): 1-8.
Verhoef, Peter C, Thijs Broekhuizen, Yakov Bart, Abhi Bhattacharya, John Qi Dong, Nicolai Fabian, and Michael Haenlein. 2021. "Digital transformation: A multidisciplinary reflection and research agenda." Journal of Business Research 122: 889-901.
Vial, Gregory. 2019. "Understanding digital transformation: A review and a research agenda." The journal of strategic information systems 28 (2): 118-144.
Vogelsang, Kristin, Kirsten Liere-Netheler, Sven Packmohr, and Uwe Hoppe. 2019. "Barriers to digital transformation in manufacturing: development of a research agenda."
Walker, Derek, and Beverley Lloyd-Walker. 2019. "The future of the management of projects in the 2030s." International Journal of Managing Projects in Business.
Whyte, Jennifer. 2019. "How digital information transforms project delivery models." Project management journal 50 (2): 177-194.
World Economic Forum, 2017. Digital Transformation Initiative Oil and Gas Industry.  
Wu, Chih-Hung, and Wen-Chang Fang. 2011. "Combining the Fuzzy Analytic Hierarchy Process and the fuzzy Delphi method for developing critical competences of electronic commerce professional managers." Quality & Quantity 45 (4): 751-768