This paper is concerned with development administration in practice, at the level of a particular project which was implemented in the Caribbean island of Jamaica in 1979. We are essentially concerned with the problem of the degree of fit between operational project objectives and the management of project resources, including personnel. The intent is to provide empirical evidence of some of the major difficulties encountered in the field by the development administrator, with a focus upon project organization and the managerial sub-system. We found the management of Project OASIS to be characterized by the lack of control mechanisms, weak discipline, and inadequate information flows. These problems were only exacerbated by the nature of the local policy environment. Development is in fact particularly difficult to administer. The conclusion emphasizes the need to involve the target communities directly in both development planning and in the process of implementation. It is also imperative to mobilize and maintain sufficient political concensus to attain the agreed outcomes, on the basis of a congruent ordering of values and utilities.