The Project Business Glossary

Version 1, date of publication: 26-Nov-2020

Are you aware that misunderstandings are among the top causes of losses and failure in project business?

In cross-corporate projects, perfect communication is a core ingredient of success. Conflicting use of terminology can be particularly dangerous, disrupting the mission-oriented partnership among the organizations and people involved and leading to costly rework. Parties should make sure that they agree on a shared glossary and avoid distortion of critical messages due to confused interpretations of words.

Agreeing on this glossary of the Project Business Foundation by downloading or referencing to this page helps unify language, avoid misinterpretations, and improve communications across corporate borders. 

You are free to use the glossary for your own purposes. This includes copy/pasting into your project (business) management methodology, as long as you add the reference to the source (scroll down the page for citation templates) and keep the version and copyright notes at the end of the glossary intact.

You may disagree with some definitions in the document or have to follow different use. Even in such cases, the Project Business Glossary can be helpful as a baseline against which your deltas are defined.

If you use it, we would be happy to see how you do it. Send a note and tell us at:

Project Business Glossary - Notes and disclaimer

The Project Business Glossary is provided for use free of charge.

This Glossary for Project Business Management is provided by the Project Business Foundation for the purpose of supporting project professionals and organizations from all industries and disciplines to do better project business. It has been written for a global community of practitioners and experts. To make sure that anyone anywhere can use it, the glossary is "jurisdiction blind" to the degree that this is possible. Where this is not possible, it is denoted in the document.

After finishing its development, this document has been given the version number 1.  Feedback and inputs are welcome at

We observed that cross-corporate project business is best done when the words and acronyms are commonly understood. Confusion on terminology can lead to expensive misunderstandings and damage the relationships of people and organizations involved. The main purpose of this glossary is to ensure a common understanding by providing either a) an authoritative resource for methodology development, training, and contracting, or b) a baseline that helps develop one's own glossary.

Whilst we believe the Project Business Glossary to be comprehensive, it is not "definitive" or "final", nor claims to be. It is “live” in the sense that it may be updated by the Project Business Foundation as a result of suggestions by the user community, which we welcome. A clear versioning process ensures that despite future changes, the glossary can be used as a reference in methodology development, education, and contracting. You can submit your suggestions by sending a message to

Users of the Project Business Glossary should remember that certain industry sectors and organizations may use (by choice, law, or convention) specific definitions, abbreviations or acronyms in their methodologies and contracts that are different from this glossary. In such cases, we recommend that the definition to be used and understood in the specific situation should be discussed and the decision made should be documented. However, even in these situations, the Project Business Glossary can be helpful by providing a baseline easing discussion, documentation, and decision making.

We believe the Project Business Glossary supports a general cross-industry understanding and enables better collaboration through the avoidance of confusion, misunderstandings, or false assumptions.

Disclaimer: The Project Business Glossary is provided as is, without any warranty or guarantees. Although the Project Business Foundation makes any effort to provide the glossary as an accurate, authoritative, and valuable asset for its users, it is the sole responsibility of the individuals and organizations using it to ensure compliance with specific contractual and legal requirements. By using this glossary, the user agrees that any form of liability (including product liability) or legal responsibility on the side of the Project Business Foundation and its management for losses, expenses of whatever nature, injury, loss of life or any other forms of damages by the Project Business Foundation is excluded. The user further agrees that the use of the glossary underlies solely Swiss law and that the application of any other law is explicitly excluded. The user understands that the Project Business Glossary is no “Produkt” according to the definition of Art. 3 Swiss Produktehaftpflichtgesetz (product liability law) and is therefore not subject to application of this law.

Release note

The Project Business Glossary team has finished and released this Version 1 of the Project Business Glossary on 26 November 2020.


  • Oliver F. Lehmann, Germany


  • David Odigie, Canada
  • Sarah Schutte, UK
  • Stanimir Sotirov, Bulgaria

For future versions of the glossary, recommendations by our community of members and followers are welcome. These may include changes to the wording, rewriting of definitions, and adding new definitions, as long as they support the authoritative character of the document.

Please use the form below to propose alterations or additional terms.

How to Cite and Reference: