A time of change

Reflections on my term as APM president



By David Waboso

United Kingdom



Project management and change go hand in hand. The most successful projects – and project managers – are those that embrace change and seek out the new.

During my three years as Association for Project Management (APM) president, the pace of change we have seen in the profession and within APM itself has been truly staggering.

When I took on the role of president in 2016, my ambition was to enhance APM’s status as a body that supports the needs of our profession, to further raise the profile of the profession at home and abroad.

Gaining our Royal Charter in 2017 was a significant step towards realising this ambition. Achieving chartered status is helping us to galvanise the profession and build recognition in the eyes of other professionals, organisations and the wider public. We have seen the creation of nearly 800 Chartered Project Professionals (ChPPs), including 495 within the first five months of the standard being announced in October 2018, according to the latest APM Member Review.

There are also other areas where I feel APM has made a real difference in building the strength of the profession:

  • Improving the delivery of the programmes and change that we manage, especially against the backdrop of increasing organisational and operational complexity.

This has been supported by an increasing range of APM research and thought leadership, development of relevant qualifications and e-learning. In addition, the themes of our recent conferences and events will help ensure APM is increasingly seen as the leading source of knowledge and insights for the project profession.

  • The need to manage the unprecedented rate of technology change sweeping across our personal and working lives across all sectors.

As a profession, we recognise this challenge and the continuing need to adapt. We can therefore provide the professional standards and framework to build a community of credible, capable and trusted professionals, delivering effective change in all sectors to all stakeholders.


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Editor’s note: This article appeared as a blog post on the APM website in July 2019.  It is republished here with APM and the author’s approval so the rest of the world can read his comments.

How to cite this article: Waboso, D. (2019). A time of change: Reflections on my term as APM president; PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue VII, August.  Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/pmwj84-Aug2019-Waboso-a-time-of-change.pdf



About the Author

David Waboso

United Kingdom




David Waboso served as president of APM from 2016 to 2019. He was awarded an APM Honorary Fellowship in 2011. He is an internationally renowned engineer and project manager who has worked on some of the world’s most prestigious infrastructure programmes including Docklands Light Railway and the Jubilee Line Extension in the UK, projects for the European Rail Agency and World Bank funded infrastructure developments in Africa.

David has a passion for training and education. He has served on committees focusing on the teaching of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects in schools, speaks regularly to the media and radio/TV, and promotes opportunities for people of all backgrounds to realise their full potential in engineering and other professions.

David was awarded a CBE in 2013 for services to transport in London. He is a Chartered Engineer, a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers, a Fellow of the Institution of Railway Signal Engineers, and an Honorary Fellow of Association for Project Management.  He also holds a Fellowship to the City and Guilds Institute.