Competitive advantage for project success will only be realized when project team members effectively access, absorb and apply the multiple learning opportunities that exist within and across projects and, manage the political dimension effectively. These items as individual entities are important project variables to be addressed. Both are also linked. In making a contribution to understanding this nexus, this paper combines and explores case study research findings from ‘within a project’ and ‘across projects’ from two countries, which illuminates some ‘central agitators’ of politics impacting project learning. These revelations have implications for both practitioners and project management researchers.