PRINCE2 Structure and its elements

PRINCE2® Structure

The 4 Integrated elements of PRINCE2

The PRINCE2 structure is an essential part of this project management method. Made of different elements which are used side by side within a project, they make up a coherent system allowing any customer to manage a project globally in a more efficient way.

These elements are referred to as the 4 integrated elements of PRINCE2.
This means that they are useless individually. The strength of the method lies in their combined use.

These elements are :
the 7 Principles
the 7 Themes
the 7 Processes
the tailoring (of the method to the project’s environment).

We describe briefly each of those elements in each of the tabs below.
Click on each separately to discover them.


  • PRINCIPLES
  • THEMES
  • PROCESSES
  • TAILORING

ADAPT to your environment

It is essential to adapt the use of the method to the project and its environment.

Each element will be done adequately and in relation to the specific need of the project

When PRINCE2 is used throughout an organisation (business or institution) it is then referred to as Embedding the method.

Whatever the Project Manager does during a PRINCE2 project,
one essential question must always come to mind :

To what measure must I apply this to my project ?

You must never apply the method to the letter but on the contrary, always use it appropriately to keep its logic and meaning.

WhY are those Principles so important?

They are two main reasons why Principles are important in PRINCE2.

1. It makes it easy for an observer to see if PRINCE2 is used appropriately.

Is an organisation following PRINCE2 or is it not?
As it stands, there are many ways to manage projects and PRINCE2 is by far not the only one and some company may prefer to use their own method, and that is perfectly fine. In most cases we find that even then there are many similarities with PRINCE2 and it would be a close match.

2. It enables teams to know where they stand.

By following the Principles you will stand a better chance to succeed with your projects.
That's a fact.
Experience over many years has shown that projects which stick to those principles increase their levels of success.

This is reassuring for those who are in charge of projects and they should stand behind the principles as it allows them to know how projects are progressing and if they are on the right track.


PRINCE2® is a registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

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