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The value of integration: systems thinking in project management, 20th Sep 2016

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The Joint Working Group between APM and INCOSE (UK) has been investigating the challenges of integrating systems engineering and PM disciplines in a project to maximise its chances of success. 

A Joint Working Group (JWG) was established in July 2013 between the UK Chapter of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE UK) and the Association for Project Management (APM) to work together to explore how to better integrate SE and PM to avoid some of the costliest problems associated with complex projects, such as delays and cost overruns, by describing and promoting good practice in the successful integration of SE and PM. 

Three years later, the JWG has produced a Body of Knowledge that encapsulates and explains its conclusions and recommendations. 

A presentation on this work was made in late September to around 25 APM North West Branch members in Warrington The session introduced the work of the JWG and the key points of its findings.
The session presented 3 case studies. These displayed different degrees of success in applying systems engineering disciplines and the “System Thinking” mindset, to illustrate the benefits of holistic thinking and design in achieving success in complex projects and programmes. 

It explained how systems engineering disciplines and PM disciplines are 2 views on the same challenge, with huge areas of overlap, and went on to discuss the challenges and potential for effective working between the two professional disciplines in the light of these overlapping activities.

The presentation also outlined some top tips on creating a project culture of systems thinking and working effectively with systems engineers, pointing the audience at the relevant websites for further details.

The evening concluded with an invitation to join the newly-formed APM SIG on Systems Thinking.

Andrew Wright
APM North West branch committee member

Andrew has kindly made the slides from his talk available, and they are listed below:




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