UK Project Management Round Up


By Miles Shepherd

Executive Advisor & International Correspondent

Salisbury, England, UK


As the New Year dawns, there is quite a bit that has rolled over from 2013.  This month, there are transport projects covering road, rail and air; more IT project ‘failure’; a range of developments in the energy sector; Defence projects and the recent announcement of major infrastructure investments.  And to round off there is a short commentary on some issues in national level projects.


First, three long term projects were completed as the year ended: two made the papers but the other did not.  The British Trust for Ornithology, in conjunction with project partners BirdWatch Ireland and the Scottish Ornithologists Club, finally issued released Bird Atlas 2007 – 2011 The breeding birds of Britain and Ireland.  This wondrous book of some 700 pages is the most complete and comprehensive overview of bird distribution and change in Britain and Ireland.

More than 1300 maps describe patterns of distribution, abundance and change for nearly 300 species in one hardback volume.  The book has been compiled from data collected by over 40,000 volunteer surveyors through timed visits, roving records and other sources, over four summers and winters.  This is not a guide to bird recognition, although there are some excellent photographs to support the text.  Weighing in at nearly 5 lbs, this is not a book to be read in bed!  For the serious birder, this Atlas identifies the changing fortunes of the birds of Britain and Ireland through the expert analysis and interpretation of scientists and authors Dawn Balmer, Simon Gillings, Brian Caffrey, Bob Swann, Iain Downie and Rob Fuller.

The latest scientific findings about distribution and change are identified and there are supporting distribution maps and chapters telling the atlas story and highlighting the factors influencing our changing bird fauna.

The story that did make the national press is even more esoteric – and took even longer to complete.  The Dictionary of Mediaeval Latin from British Sources is an equally magnificent tome that has been compiled over one hundred years.  The project began in response to an appeal in The Times for help in compiling the dictionary.  Last month, the final part of the 17 volume dictionary was published.  Drawing on sources ranging from poetry and sermons to scientific texts and state records, the Dictionary has more than 58,000 entries in nearly 4000 pages.  


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About the Author

flag-ukpmwj17-dec2013-shepherd-AUTHOR IMAGEMILES SHEPHERD

Salisbury, UK

Miles Shepherd is an executive editorial advisor and international correspondent for PM World in the United Kingdom. He is also managing director for MS Projects Ltd, a consulting company supporting various UK and overseas Government agencies, nuclear industry organisations and other businesses.  Miles has over 30 years’ experience on a variety of projects in UK, Eastern Europe and Russia.  His PM experience includes defence, major IT projects, decommissioning of nuclear reactors, nuclear security, rail and business projects for the UK Government and EU.   Past Chair and Fellow of the Association for Project Management (APM), Miles is also past president and chair of the International Project Management Association (IPMA).  He is currently Director of PMI’s Global Accreditation Centre and the Chair of the ISO committee developing new international standards for Project Management and for Program/Portfolio Management.  He was involved in setting up APM’s team developing guidelines for project management oversight and governance.  Miles is based in Salisbury, England and can be contacted at [email protected].