I have a friend who has a M.S. in Biology and has led several biology-related research projects with both pharmaceutical companies and hospitals. Her job was eliminated (second time), and she is considering a career change towards project management.

The research projects she has conducted has included the various aspects of project management, including identifying/maintaining scope, managing resources, managing costs to the budget established for that project, and final deliverable (published report) and closeout. I believe she has attained project experience without necessary knowing it, and I think she can make a case that experience can count towards PMP certification requirements. In addition, she has taken several project management classes for meeting the education requirement.

Does managing science research projects in this manner count as PMP project experience?

  • 1
    Hi Mike, welcome to PMSE! I believe this question should be directed to the PMI instead of this audience. If PMI support doesn't give the answer, maybe a visit to the local chapter and a chat with some folks could help on it. The point is, even though all the community may consider such experience as valid to become a PMP, the last answer needs to come from PMI. Cheers!
    – Tiago Cardoso
    Commented Apr 3, 2014 at 23:21

4 Answers 4


Based on my experience, yes a scientific research project should count. As a PM in a pharmaceutical company I submitted as my experience nothing but scientific research projects (specifically pharmaceutical safety, PK and efficacy studies) and got my PMP based on that.


Look at PMI's definition of a project: a unique endeavor that has a defined start and stop that produces a product or service (my words, not exactly PMI's). PMI further defines 10 knowledge areas that have processes within five process groups. The application will ask for evidence of activity within each knowledge area across the process groups. If the work performed within the research project can be described within PMI's context, then the research project will qualify from that standpoint. The issue becomes whether the candidate met the degree of complexity, and of course time, to qualify and only PMI can answer that.




I am not a PMI auditor, nor do I play one on the web. I can't give you an authoritative answer.

I can tell you that about half the experience I submitted to document my PMI was not in formally declared projects.

I'm not alone in this belief, PM:SE has handled many questions about whether profession X qualifies as PMI experience.


Yes, it does not matter if it is science, R&D or any other type of project. If you have an objective to achieve in a limited specific time, you are executing a project. Your should apply all project management principles and you should count your experience.

Please refer following link http://www.askpmp.com/how-can-i-fulfil-pmp-certification-experience-requirements/

Check if you are doing activities listed on above link. Time contributed to all these tasks can be counted toward experience in project management.

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