Looking Back, Looking Forward & Sporting a Fresh New Look

From humble beginnings around a dining room table in 1969, PMI has grown into a truly global enterprise—and helped to establish project management as a formal, recognized profession. Even as we looked back with pride on our first 50 years, 2019 was a year for PMI to map out a bold new future.

Together, we are building an organization that:

  • Delivers the products, services, training, supports, insights and skills how and when our stakeholders need them.
  • Forges unprecedented new partnerships to expand our relevance for people and organizations operating in a complex and fast-moving global economy.
  • Provides value along the full arc of an individual’s life and career from age 5 to 75.


PMI 50th Anniversary

Throughout 2019, we celebrated our 50th anniversary through an exciting series of events and activities held with thousands of participants in every corner of the world -- culminating at our Global Conference in the heart of Philadelphia in October. It was there that we officially unveiled the new PMI brand identity in front of an audience of more than 3,000 attendees, and simultaneously announced it to the world through our website and social media.

Sunil joined PMI chapters, members, and stakeholders around the globe in celebrating PMI's 50th annviversary.

Launching Our New Brand

PMI’s new brand identity serves as our cue to the world that PMI – 50+ years on -- continues to lead the way for a fast-changing profession. The new brand is about more than flashy new colors and logos; it reflects our evolving identity. We’re helping individuals and organizations around the world to better understand how the nature and pace of work are changing, how they can ensure their relevance and thrive in the midst of this change, and how PMI is uniquely “Powering The Project Economy.”

The icons in the graphic below are visual representations of our brand.

Sunil Brand Into at Conference 2019

Sunil unveiling our new brand at Global Conference.


A selection of how PMI chapters around the globe embraced our new brand identity.

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Jim Snyder - 50 years with PMI

PMI co-founder Jim Snyder remembers, celebrates and gives back, as PMI celebrates 50 years of achievements.

Jim Snyder - A Half Century of Service to PMI

PMI co-founder Jim Snyder helped PMI commemorate its 50th anniversary, playing a prominent role at Global Conference and anniversary celebrations throughout the year.

Jim and his colleagues began PMI in 1969 with a vision of a forum where professionals could come together to discuss emerging concepts and practices in project management – ultimately helping to establish project management as a formal profession.

Among his numerous accolades, Jim was the recipient of the PMI Man of the Year award, an Honorary Life Member of the Institute and one of the first three individuals to be named as a Fellow of the Institute in 1982. Jim was also a founding member of the Delaware Valley Chapter of PMI and Chairman Emeritus of the PMI Education Foundation Board of Directors, where he tirelessly advocated for the importance of youth gaining project management skills.

Jim even personally served as the project manager for the construction of PMI’s global headquarters in Newtown Square, Pennsylvania, USA, where the PMI James R. Snyder Center for Project Management Knowledge and Wisdom is named in his honor.

Jim Snyder Book Signing at GC 2019

Jim signing his yearbook at Global Conference.

Sunil Congrats to Jim at GC 2019

Sunil honoring Jim on stage at Global Conference.

PMI and TED - Making Ideas a Reality and Ideas Worth Spreading

This year PMI launched a partnership with TED, the globally renowned non-profit organization known for sharing “ideas worth spreading” through high quality.

Our two brands worked together to bring inspiring ideas and powerful voices to the world of project, program and portfolio management, empowering people to make ideas a reality. Activations included bringing TED speakers to PMI events with future plans for TED@PMI, a collaboration that will showcases the wide spectrum of innovative, inspiring and talented people across the PMI universe.

2019 Annual Report TED@PMI GC Speaker

PMI conference attendees enjoyed a number of dynamic TED activations in 2019.

Welcome to The Project Economy

The Project Economy

In 2019, PMI further established itself as a preeminent thought leader in the global discussion around the future of work. Today, organizations and people are centered around a portfolio of projects to deliver outcomes. We call this new way of working “The Project Economy” - in which people have the skills and capabilities they need to turn ideas into reality.

For individuals, this means having the right skills and mindset to move seamlessly from project to project in order to help their organizations deliver strategic outcomes. For organizations, this means delivering value to stakeholders through successful completion of projects, delivery of products, and alignment to value streams. All of these initiatives deliver financial and societal value.


Most Influential Projects

To mark our 50th Anniversary, PMI announced the first-of-its-kind rankings of the top 50 projects of the past 50 years on our list of Most Influential Projects. The list recognizes projects that have transformed their sectors and, in some cases, the entire business landscape — from technology to healthcare, infrastructure to architecture, finance to entertainment. The wide-ranging honorees include iconic achievements such as Apollo 11, the Boeing 747® airplane, and the #1-ranked project: creation of the World Wide Web.

Honorees were chosen from among more than 1,000 high-impact projects identified by 400 leaders in the global project management community, including PMI chapter leaders and members, as well as academics and industry experts. The list stimulated exciting engagement and debate around the world, highlighting the important role that projects have played in driving landmark achievements for the past five decades.

Counting Down the 50 Most Influential Projects

When we dream about the future, the possibilities are endless.

2019 Annual Report Highlights 50 MIP

As part of the 18th Annual American Business Awards, PMI won a GOLD STEVIE AWARD for its Most Influential Projects initiative in the category of “Communications or PR Campaign of the Year.”

50 Most Influential Projects: World Wide Web

The World Wide Web project single-handedly revolutionized how we live, work, think and play.

Building PMI's Leadership in Agile

While PMI built its reputation and expertise primarily in the arena of traditional project management, individuals and organizations around the world are working in an increasingly “agile” world. In order to strengthen our position in the agile marketplace and provide even more value for its members, PMI acquired Disciplined Agile (DA) and FLEX in 2019. Regardless of approach, whether it be traditional or agile, project or product, PMI is now uniquely positioned to deliver value for individuals and the organizations they serve.

Together, Disciplined Agile and FLEX have combined under PMI’s banner to offer solutions to address organizations’ major pain points – allowing them to realize stronger business outcomes, faster. During 2019, the teams became fully integrated and have worked to develop an exciting new suite of course offerings and certifications designed to meet practitioners “where they are” and allow them to tailor solutions for the way each organization works. This will further cement PMI’s global leadership in the agile space – whilst remaining loyal to the traditional project management approaches that have put our profession on the map.

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Screenshot of DA Podcast Episode

"Podcast" on PMI's Disciplined Agile (DA) Acquisition

In this quick-turn audio recording, Sunil talks with PMI’s Dave Garrett and DA co-founder Mark Lines to explore why PMI made this acquisition, what’s unique about DA, and — most important — what value it will bring to PMI’s many stakeholders.

Listen Now

Brightline - Connecting Strategy with Implementation

For several years, PMI’s Brightline Initiative has joined together with leading global organizations to help executives bridge the expensive and unproductive gap between strategy design and delivery. Brightline expanded its scope during 2019 and developed a trademarked “transformation compass” as a practical tool for executives.

Brightline now provides organizations with three key benefits:

  • Thought & Practice Leadership that gives organizations the cutting-edge research and solutions they need to better implement transformation
  • Networking for leaders to exchange experiences and advance ideas and practices related to strategy and transformation
  • Capacity Building to enable organizations to further develop knowledge within their own ranks

During the year, Brightline convened and supported a host of engaging events around the world and published its new “Transformation Framework” and “The Transformation Playbook” to Chief Strategy Officers (CSOs), Senior VPs, and Executive Directors at large enterprises regardless of industry or geographic location. They also launched development of a Brightline Transformation certification that is expected to be available in 2020.

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Thought Leadership

To survive and thrive in The Project Economy, project professionals can’t operate in a vacuum. In addition to the practical skills, training and certifications PMI has long been known for, today’s practitioners need access to the most important insights and trends impacting projects around the globe. They need help to see around the corners ahead, and to understand how work is changing.

Throughout the year, PMI conducts extensive research and publishes thought leadership to keep our members informed of the latest trends in the profession -- including notable projects and programs, and the people who drive them to success. 2019 was no exception.

2020 Signpost Cover Report
Future of Work
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Giving Back Through Service & Improving Society

An important part of PMI’s DNA has been shaped by our not-for-profit purpose to improve society through projects, so this golden anniversary was a fitting time to put a unique capstone on 50 years of giving back. We didn’t just celebrate around the globe; we used the occasion as a time to rally together in service, to contribute our collective skills and passion, and to make a difference in the world together.

To accomplish this, the PMI community came together in the Global Celebration of Service – a call to support the United Nations’ mission to advance societal goals like fighting poverty and climate change. PMI stakeholders put their expertise in project management into action in order to enable local organizations and help fulfill the promise of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.

We initially set a goal of 50,000 volunteer service hours pledged by our members and partners. In typical fashion, the PMI family overachieved – ultimately TRIPLING the original goal by pledging to contribute more than 150,000 volunteer service hours to advance causes aligned with the SDGs. This Global Celebration of Service was part of our Made Possible by a Project Manager campaign -- harnessing the passion of project professionals around the world to drive societal change.

As part of the 18th Annual American Business Awards, PMI won a SILVER STEVIE AWARD for its Global Celebration of Service in the category of “Corporate Social Responsibility  Program of the Year - Organizations Up to 2,500 Employees.”

South Africa Jabulani School

Students from the PMI South Africa Chapter learn skills in project management and ways that they can use them to develop their careers.

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PMI Global Celebration of Service | Building Better Communities

PMI volunteers encourage everyone to get involved in the PMI Global Celebration of Service.

A Feeling of Solidarity Following the Ecuador Earthquake

“There comes a moment when life calls you to volunteer. This is my time,” said Santiago Cartagena of the PMI Ecuador Chapter. 

Project Management Institute Educational Foundation (PMIEF)

In 2019, PMI invested more than US$ 6.5 million to support social responsibility through its philanthropic arm -- the PMI Educational Foundation (PMIEF). Just as important as the dollars invested, 2019 marked the launch of PMIEF's new strategy to ensure that youth learn and apply project management to help support the world's leading nonprofits.

These newly-focused efforts to teach life skills and early project management capability to young people age 5 to 19 will pay dividends to those individuals and their families, to society as a whole, and to the global economy that will need these future professionals to tackle some of the world’s biggest challenges in the future. This early life focus through PMIEF will expose PMI to new generations of potential project managers - and help ensure a vibrant future for the profession as PMIEF celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2020.

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PMI Educational Foundation: Inspiring Youth Through Project Management

PMIEF's notable significant successes in 2019:

  • US$ 2.4 million in grants through new partnerships with F1 in Schools, Junior Achievement Africa, and Special Olympics International …will reach 1 million+ youth who participate in these nonprofits' highly experiential, project-oriented activities.
  • 170,000+ youth ages 5 to 19 -- and nearly 4,000 teachers and school administrators -- learned project management through the foundation's various initiatives.
  • 400 individuals received scholarships and awards in excess of US$ 430,000 thanks to generosity of the PMI global community and other donors.
  • 200+ PMI chapters participated in PMIEF's chapter liaison program to bolster chapters' social good efforts, including through volunteer opportunities the foundation offers.
  • 60,000 free downloads made by youth, educators, nonprofit professionals, practitioners, and others to easily learn and apply project management skills through PMIEF's no-cost educational resources.