Published here January 2019

Foreword | Projects and PMI | PMBOK Standards
Basic Project Management Functions | The Project Life Cycle
Other Essential Functions | The PMBOK Setting

Projects and PMI

The idea of establishing projects, and the consequential need to manage them, has been around for a very longtime. In fact, since early civilization major projects like the pyramids of Egypt, or the Great Wall of China, or more recently, the Suez and Panama canals, have been successfully implemented. In their day, these were prolonged and complex undertakings and no doubt they exhibited many of the "management" difficulties experienced even at the present time.

The essential feature of these projects, indeed of any project, is to bring about change. That projects are designed to create change is not new. What is new is the rapidity with which change is currently taking place and which we may be confidently expected to continue to take place.

For example, the marvels of modern electronic communications have made almost everyone acutely aware of the disparities, which exist between and within communities, countries and continents of the world. Improvements in this situation are only going to be brought about by even more and widespread change, often with unprecedented degrees of urgency. Since our resources are clearly limited, be they global or be they local, we must ensure that such change is brought about as effectively and efficiently as possible.

Through its primary dedication of "advancing the state-of-the-art in the management of projects", the Project Management Institute aspires to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the management of change for the benefit of all mankind. The effort to identify and establish standards associated with the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) follows naturally from PMI's primary dedication. It represents a major Institute endeavor and is the PMBOK's primary purpose. Secondary to this purpose, but equally consistent with PMI's dedication, is to provide the basis and support for PMI's professionalism programs, which include Accreditation, Education and Certification. These programs are described in other PMI publications.

Foreward  Foreword

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