Application of a technique for research and development program evaluation in Operations Research 7 No. 5 pp. 646 – 669, September-October 1959 [Pioneering Statistical Tool: PERT]. D. G. Malcolm, W., Fazar, Clark C. E., J. H., Rosenboom.
Application of a technique for research and development program evaluation in Operations Research 7 No. 5 pp. 646 – 669, September-October 1959 [Pioneering Statistical Tool: PERT]

Application of a technique for research and development program evaluation in Operations Research 7 No. 5 pp. 646 – 669, September-October 1959 [Pioneering Statistical Tool: PERT]

FIRST EDITION IN ORIGINAL WRAPS OF A PIONEERING TECHNIQUE FOR PROJECT PLANNING AND MONITORING commonly called PERT (Project Evaluation Review Technique. The paper “describes the development and application of a technique for measuring and controlling development progress” for the Navy’s Polaris Fleet Ballistic Missile program” (Malcolm, et al., 1959, p. 646).

A statistical mathematics tool, PERT was “set up to develop, test, and implement a methodology for providing [the Special Projects, Bureau of Ordnance Office of the US Navy] with integrated and quantitative evaluation of (a) progress to date and the outlook for accomplishing the objectives of the FBM program, (b) validity of established plans and schedules for accomplishing the program objectives, and (c) effects of changes proposed in established plans” (ibid). In short, PERT analyzed and represented the tasks involved to successfully complete any given project.

Formal work on PERT began at General Dynamics in early 1958 with the objective of creating “a management method for handling the hundreds of contractors who would be designing, constructing and testing the POLARIS submarine and missile systems” (Stretton, A Short History of Modern Project Management, PM World Today). This meant that the methodology [had to be] able “to incorporate uncertainty by making it possible to schedule a project while not knowing precisely the details and durations of all the activities. It is more of an event-oriented technique rather than start- and completion-oriented, and is used more in projects where time is the major factor rather than cost. It is applied to very large-scale, one-time, complex, non-routine infrastructure and Research and Development projects” (Wikipedia).

Though developed independently, another analytical tool used for scheduling and managing project activities appeared in 1959. CPM (Critical Path Method ) is a term developed between 1956 and 1959 in a ‘think tank’ group at Du Pont and in conjunction with a group at Remington Rand Univac. Technically speaking, it is an algorithm employed for the scheduling of a set of project activities.

Both CPM and PERT techniques are based on networks and both use the concept of critical paths and slack. The main differences are that while PERT is probabilistic, CPM is deterministic; while PERT is event-oriented, CPM is activity-oriented; while PERT analysis is concerned essentially with the time factor and does not usually consider costs, CPM analysis attempts to tease out the relationship between project duration and cost; while PERT is used for non-repetitive projects, CPM is used for repetitive ones; and while PERT can be analyzed statistically, with CPM statistical analysis is not applicable. Item #1431

CONDITION & DETAILS: Complete issue in original wrappers. 8vo. (9 x 7.5 inches). Ex-libris bearing one stamp on the front wrap and no others; professionally re-backed at the spine. The wraps are tightly and solidly attached with very slight wear at the edges. Bright and clean throughout. Very good condition.

Price: $250.00