Date of Award

Fall 2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Mechanical Engineering

Committee Director

Han P. Bao

Committee Member

Gene J. -W. Hou

Committee Member

Duc T. Nguyen


This dissertation proposes a method that quantifies the dynamics caused by disruptions due to multiple changes that can occur during the progression of a large scale project. To begin, equations consisting of multiple parallel event sequences are derived that define the relationship between individual process events and the final project completion time. Matrix notation and a precedence matrix concept are used in this derivation to produce equations that are best suited for computer programming applications. This relationship is the foundation upon which the equations are built to calculate the variation impact on each event of a large scale project. Pursuing this further, the Analytical Hierarchy Process is used to rank Contract, Quality and Uncontrollable Variation types to generate two multiplication factors. One factor accounts for the variation type, and the other captures the variation influence relative to each event. These factors are used to define and formulate the equations used to quantify the impact of variation on each project event. Matrix notation, binomial variables, and Hadamard operators are used in the formula to optimize the result’s applicability to large data sets required for large scale projects. In the final analysis, the impact equations are used in a Monte Carlo simulation to produce each impact probability. These impact probability results are helpful tools for managing cost and evaluating design options. The Monte Carlo results are also used to reinforce the proposed process by quantifying the impact of change and providing a measurable metric for performance accountability. Examples and illustrations are used in each derivation to better convey the proposed concepts and application.