This study seeks to examine how collaboration in planning has developed in the fields of urban planning (UP), software design and lean construction and to present what construction project management can learn from these developments. A critical literature review was adopted to achieve the aim of the study. The study found that the prevailing rational or technical approach to planning is not germane to the construction industry alone. Rather, it exists in various disciplines as seen in the rational comprehensive model (RCM) used in urban planning and the waterfall process model used in software design. The research reveals that the current theory on which construction project management is based cannot provide resources, which people can utilise to develop genuine collaboration in planning among construction stakeholders. To overcome this, the study recommends that construction project management should include the concept of management-as-organising and the ‘Flow’ and ‘Value’ views which can provide resources that can be utilised by people for the smooth running of the production (construction) system as demonstrated in Scrum and the Last Planner System. This study brings new insight and opens a new opportunity on how collaboration could be achieved in construction project management using existing evidence from other fields. Additionally, the study contributes to the discussion on construction management theory that has received less attention.