Multi-dimensional Project Breakdown Structures

to Ensure Efficient Delivery of Hospital Construction



By Danilo Arba

Milan, Italy
Lima, Peru




Health-care related spending is growing worldwide. To increase efficiency and control costs, health economics are applied by hospital management.  The purpose of this case study is, therefore, to explore the best solution to integrate and standardise the WBS/CBS comparing different methods.

2D Standard WBS/CBS approach researched to define if this is the best solution to allow local governments to reach financial and social goals while still maintaining control of the estimate and applying the best international practices and the highest ethical standards[1], this from the tendering process as the country is considered the 101 most corrupt nation out of 179 countries[2], and one of the two hospitals considered in this case study was stopped due to corruption and cost overruns or if we need to look to new solutions to guarantee efficient delivery of the projects.

Keywords: WBS, CBS, Multidimensional WBS, Hospitals, Coding Structures, Best Practice, Government Agreements, BIM, 3D Coding Structures


A new wave of agreement between European governments and the Peruvian government is taking place, after the successful implementation of this state-to-state agreement in the 2019 Pan-American Games [3].

Figure 01: Completed T30 building in Huna Province[4]

The challenge for the Peruvian economy, and with many economies and for other countries in the region, is to build the first-class infrastructure to bring growth and prosperity to their citizens reducing or eliminating public spending mistakes[5] and corruption[6] that many times in the past created wrong spending of public funds and personal enrichments, of which we have examples all around the world.

In this respect, the new model for developing local infrastructure paid by taxes will create an alternative approach to building high-quality public projects, on time and with extremely competitive costs. International experience and track record on programs like the Pan and Parapan American Games brings the capabilities to build the infrastructure that the local populations expect. Nevertheless, when it comes to project controls, budgeting and cost tracking, the Cost Breakdown Structure (CBS)[7] carries out an integral role in the management of construction projects.  For many organisations, designing a standardised CBS can present several challenges.

The reality is that many times we find ourself trying to define how to break down interdependent buckets to manage the finances properly.


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How to cite this paper: Arba, D. (2020). Multi-dimensional Project Breakdown Structures to Ensure Efficient Delivery of Hospital Construction, PM World Journal, Vol. IX, Issue XI, November. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/pmwj99-Nov2020-Arba-multi-dimesional-project-breakdown-structures2.pdf



About the Author

Danilo Arba

Milan, Italy
Lima, Peru


Danilo Arba is a project controls & management enthusiast, with 20 years of experience. Certified Cost Engineer and Executive MBA from Politecnico di Milano. Thorough understanding of EPC (Engineering, Procurement, and Construction) industry, with verifiable track record of planning multimillion/billion-dollar worldwide construction projects. He lived & worked all his life around the world from South America, Africa, South East Asia to Europe. Adept at building and leading cross-functional teams from project conception to completion, optimising performance, contractual, and financial deliverables. Currently furthering his education by way of a distance learning mentoring course, under the tutorage of Dr Paul D. Giammalvo, CDT, CCE, MScPM, MRICS, GPM-m Senior Technical Advisor, PT Mitrata Citragraha, to attain Guild of Project Controls certification.

Danilo lives in Milan, Italy and Lima, Peru and can be contacted at danilo.arba@mip.polimi.it


[1] International standards. (n.d.). https://www.rai-see.org/international-standards/

[2] most corrupt countries 2020. (n.d.). 2020 World Population by Country. https://worldpopulationreview.com/country-rankings/most-corrupt-countries

[3] Mace celebrates Pan-American success in Lima and secures new role in Peru. (n.d.). Mace. https://www.macegroup.com/media-centre/190730-mace-celebrates-pan-american-success-in-lima-and-secures-new-role-in-peru

[4] (n.d.). Juegos Panamericanos y Parapanamericanos | Lima 2019. https://www.lima2019.pe/

[5] The Oxford Olympics study 2016: Cost and cost overrun at the games. (n.d.). arXiv.org. https://arxiv.org/abs/1607.04484

[6] Corruption perceptions index. (2019, December 4). Transparency.org. https://www.transparency.org/en/cpi#

[7] BS (Cost breakdown structure). (2018, July 25). The Project Definition. https://www.theprojectdefinition.com/cbs-cost-breakdown-structure/