History of PRINCE2®

PRINCE2® originated from PROMPT II (Project Resource Organisation Management Planning Techniques).

PRINCE was originally based on PROMPT, a project management method created by Simpact Systems Ltd in 1975, and adopted by CCTA in 1979 as the standard to be used for all Government information system projects.

In the year 1989, a version of PROMPT II was adopted as a UK Government standard for information systems (IT) project management by CCTA, Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency. In June 2010, the Office of Government Commerce Best Practice Management functions moved into the Cabinet Office.

However, it was renamed in a Civil Service competition to ‘PRojects IN Controlled Environments’. In a short span of time, PRINCE was applied even outside the IT environment, both in the UK Government and private sectors.

On PRINCE being launched in the year 1989, it effectively superseded PROMPT within Government projects. PRINCE remains in the public domain and the crown holds its copyright. PRINCE2® was published in 1996, having been contributed to by an association of some 150 European organisations.

PRINCE2® was released in the year 1996 as a common project management method.

Since then, it has gained increasing popularity, and now it is a de-facto standard for project management in many UK Government departments and across the United Nations systems as well.

After being revised again in the year 2009, the acronym was changed, this time to ‘PRojects IN a Controlled Environment’.

Ever since PRINCE2® was launched (1996), it has undergone two significant revisions:

  • ‘PRINCE2®:2009 Refresh’ in the year 2009
  • ‘PRINCE2® 2017’ Update in 2017