DSDM® Agile Project Framework
The first-generation Agile methods were XP (eXtreme Programming), DSDM, Crystal, Scrum, and a few more. After a few years of practicing, people involved in those methods got together and prepared the Agile Manifesto, which is considered by many as the ultimate truth about Agility these days.
The development of DSDM was led by DSDM Consortium (founded in 1994). It’s been actively developed since then, and there were a few versions of it, including the famous DSDM Atern. The latest version is DSDM Agile Project Framework, sometimes abbreviated as APF, and sometimes referred to simply as DSDM.
DSDM Consortium was re-branded in 2016, and it’s now called Agile Business Consortium.
There’s a fundamental difference between DSDM and the other first-generation Agile methods: They were all designed for small projects with one team, while DSDM was originally designed to support larger projects with multiple teams. This eliminates the need for scaling addons such as those available for Scrum.
Because of its nature, DSDM is more sophisticated than other first-generation methods. DSDM is also very well structured and clear, inspired by PRINCE2® and other established methods that were created before them. In other words, it hasn’t tried to reinvent the wheel.
DSDM builds a complete methodology around its philosophy. This methodology has a process with multiple phases which can be arranged in different ways to create various types of lifecycle.
There are certain roles and responsibilities defined in the methodology to match the philosophy, the principles, and the process. This includes the role of project manager, which is an acceptable role in most first-generation Agile methods, but not Scrum.
To facilitate the work of project teams, there are multiple products defined in the methodology. These products are sometimes documents and artifacts like that, and sometimes elements such as models.
Besides the elements above, which are the main parts of the methodology, there are also a few techniques/practices such as MoSCoW Prioritization, timeboxing, modeling, and facilitated workshops.
Agile Business Consortium has defined multiple certification programs, including AgilePM® Foundation and AgilePM® Practitioner. There are also certifications for business analysis, program management, etc.
Written by Nader K. Rad
This is (and will be) a work in progress: More details will be added in the future, depending on the feedback.
This wiki is developed and managed by an accredited trainer, independent of Agile Business Consortium and APMG. While aligned with their guidelines, it’s not an official resource.