Project Governance

Term Definition

Project Governance is a subset of IT Governance. Project Governance refers to the rules and regulations under which an IT project functions. As with IT Governance, it covers the mechanisms put in place to ensure compliance with those standards. Project Governance is frequently used in the Information Technology sector to describe the processes, which need to exist in order for a project to be successful.

Project governance will outline the relationships between all groups involved in the project, describe the project information flow to all stakeholders and ensure reviews and approvals at appropriate stages of the project. 

Project governance not only provides a framework for the organization of responsibilities and decision-making capabilities, it also ensures that the project implementation and execution will go smoothly. Before the project starts, it is determined who will make project-related decisions and how they will make them. Setting up project governance decreases the probability of poor controls during the life of the project.

Determining project governance will vary depending on the project scope, the level of risk and the organization's culture. All projects require someone or some entity to be responsible. This accountability might fall to many different governance structures, particularly in larger organizations. Large projects will likely have governance at various levels. There may be a project management office, which provides oversight and in turn executive committees and/or organizations may oversee their role. Project managers may report to business managers who in turn report to executive managers. The size of the project, costs and level of risk will all play a part in determining the amount and level of governance. Many corporations have charters, which address project governance and define a model that is to be followed. Project Portfolio Management software is a technology solution employed by some corporations to automate budget control, project governance and compliance.

Area of Application
Project Management
Project Portfolio

Related Terms
Corporate Governance
IT Governance

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