Setting the stage for a new profession
This article offers a short history of project management practices and the development of the project management profession as it took place following World War II. The needs of the defense and atomic science communities initially sponsored the creation of project development and implementation strategies. The first computers were linearly programmed and used to develop the methodology which ultimately became known as the Critical Path Method (CPM). The same time period also saw the emergence of the Operations Research/Management profession, and the growing acceptance of management as a science. In the 1940s and 1950s, scheduling became the focus of much research, spawning such innovations as PERT (Program Evaluation and Review), which was developed to manage the Polaris Missile program, and other contributions by the Air Force, Navy, IBM and Stanford University.