Evolutionary project management: focusing on the top level critical objectives and delivering real value early in software IT projects & programmes

Monday 15 April 2013, 6.00pm - 8.00pm

London Bridge Hotel, 8-18 London Bridge Street, London, SE1 9SG

APM Members, Free, Employees of APM Corporate Members, Free, BCS Members, Free, Non-Members £10

Tom Gilb


This collaborative event has been jointly organised by the Agile Methods Specialist Group of BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT and the Programme Management Specific Interest Group of the Association for Project Management.

The lecture and discussion will build on Brian Wernham’s presentation to the BCS on 5th February where Brian delivered two presentations. Firstly, he expounded the lessons learned from the U.S. based on the FBI Sentinel, Case study, one of a number of such studies, from his best-selling book ‘Agile Project Management for Government, (Maitland & Strong, 2012). In the second part of the evening Brian went on to discuss Government plans both in the USA, & the UK in particular, to accelerate implementation of agile methods and thinking.

The current ‘Digital by Exception’ initiative has been derived from the UK government ICT Strategy which has now launched the government procurement framework heralding the appointment of a’ neutral vendor’, and the decision to accelerate 25 exemplar projects using agile as part of their ambitious overall digital transformation programme. (See a clip of Brian’s explanation on the 5th February but don’t expect things to have stood still since!)

Brian is unable to be with us on the 15th April but will no doubt share highlights gleaned from his close involvement with the government’s ambitious transformation programme.

Tom Gilb’s lecture promises to be interactive and entertaining, bringing this material together in a new and interesting way; adding to the growing community of practice and body of knowledge of agile programme management.

Tom has kindly offered to take time out from his busy schedule, which includes a 3-day Advanced IT Project Management Course whilst he is London, so we recommend you book early to avoid disappointment.

Tom Gilb joined IBM in 1958 and has been a business consultant since 1960, with his own company. He currently trains and consults with top management and engineering management for product development, as well as in the finance industry in the City and internationally.

His book ‘Principles of Software Engineering Management” (1988, now in 20th printing) is explicitly credited by Kent beck and other Agile method leaders as the source of short development cycles and many other ideas in development of the Agile methods.

Kent Beck on Tom Gilb’s, Principles of Software Engineering Management said that it provides “A strong case for evolutionary delivery - small releases, constant refactoring, intense dialog with the customer.” In a mail to Tom, Kent wrote: “I'm glad you and I have some alignment of ideas. I stole enough of yours that I'd be disappointed if we didn't. Kent” (2003).

Tom is cited by Craig Larman in an IEEE Computer (June 2003) paper on Iterative methods history as a pioneer with his Evo papers and books. Many early papers cited were during his 120 paper bi-weekly ‘Gilb’s Mythology’ stint in the late 1970’s in Computer Weekly (UK). Larman also included a chapter in his book, “Agile and Iterative Development: A Manager’s Guide” (2003) describing Gilb’s contribution to the Agile Iterative class of methods; comparatively with XP, Scrum, Crystal etc.

When Tom published ‘Adding Stakeholder Metrics to Agile Projects’ in July 2004, Jim Highsmith (Editor of  that issue, an Agile Manifesto signatory) commented: “Two individuals in particular pioneered the evolution of the iterative development approached in the 1980’s – Barry Boehm with his Spiral Model and Tom Gilb with his Evo model. I drew on Boehm’s and Gilb’s ideas for early inspiration in developing Adaptive Software Development … Gilb has long advocated this more explicit (quantitative) valuation in order to capture the early value and increase ROI”.