Prince or Pauper?  Does project management certification really matter?


By Dr Ayman Abu-rumman

Amman, Jordan


Using evidence from the existing literature, this article explores if formal project management certification makes a difference to the outcomes of projects and explores what other characteristics project managers may need to possess in order to manage projects successfully.

Overall, a critical review of the literature finds that whilst there is some support for formal project management certification, there is limited evidence to suggest a correlation between this and project success. Instead of the generic set of competencies set out in formal certification schemes such as Prince 2 and from the Project Management Institute, studies suggest that effective project managers need a wider range of skills, attributes and behaviours in order to manage projects successfully.

In addition, the evidence suggests that a one size fits all approach purported by certification is not appropriate and that whilst a project manager may be extremely effective in one project scenario, they may not be in another if they are unable to adapt their approach and project management techniques.

The article recommends that further research is needed into identifying what other benefits, if any, certification can offer the field of project management and how it may need to be extended to incorporate a broader range of characteristic and attribute measures.


This article discusses whether or not formal project management certification makes a difference to the relative success or failure of different projects, or if there are other characteristics of individual project managers that are more important. Using a critical review of the existing literature it explores the question of what actually makes a good project manager, and if formal accreditation is really required.


To read entire paper (click here)

About the Author

pmwj23-jun2014-Abu-rumman-AUTHOR IMAGEAyman Abu-rumman, PhDflag-amman-jordan

Amman, Jordan

Ayman Abu-rumman, PhD is a lecturer in the Engineering and Business Schools at Al Isra University in Amman, Jordan. He received his PhD from Coventry University, UK in 2013. He is also currently working in engineering management.  Dr Abu-ramman can be contacted at [email protected].