Defence Program Management


Course Outline:

This course provides attendees from within the Australian Defence Organisation, other government agencies and defence industry with an opportunity to develop an understanding of the principal activities and artefacts associated with the Program level of the Australian Defence Capability Life Cycle (CLC). An overview of program management is provided with particular emphasis on the way in which Defence manages Programs as part of the CLC. A guided walkthrough of the program-level artefacts is also provided and selected important activities are discussed in detail: the Capability Program Directive (CPgD), the Program Operational Concept (POC), and the Program Strategy (PS).

Prior attendance at the CLC Management Course is recommended, but not essential.

Duration: 2 days

Delivery mode: Online

What you will receive:

Affiliated courses:  CLC Management (3 days), Defence Project Management (3 days), Requirements Practice (5 days),  Introduction to Project Management (3 days) &  Introduction to Systems Engineering (3 days)

*pending final results


Anyone within Government or industry requiring an understanding of how Defence does business with regard to the capability systems development process, including, but not limited to;

Business managers

Systems engineers

Business development managers

Project technical staff

Contract managers

Hardware and software engineers

Project managers

Reliability engineers

Capability development staff

Supply chain managers


Overview of Programs and Program Management

Purpose and Structure of Programs| Different views of a Program| Different Types of Programs and characteristics | Program Bodies of Knowledge

Brief Revision of Capability Life Cycle (CLC)

Overview of the CLC | Philosophy of CLC | Key attributes | Phases of the CLC | CLC Process and key supporting frameworks | Hierarchy of Defence Guidance | Introduction to CLC artefacts (CPgD, PS, PMP, POC, JCNS, PES, IPMP)

Overview of Defence Capability Programs and Related Constructs

What is a System? | How groups of systems deliver Defence capability: SoS, FoS, PoS | Why have Programs? | Relationship of system groupings to CLC Programs | Programs as a reference for Projects that deliver individual capability systems

Mission Engineering for Defence Capability Programs

What is Mission Engineering? | Application of Mission engineering to developing Defence Programs: from Defence guidance to Program definition | Joint Force and Integration and Interoperability

Capability Program Directive (CPgD)

How is the CPgD developed? | Explaining the contents of the CPgD | How to use the contents of the CPgD

Program Operational Concept (POC) and Architectures

Explaining the contents of the POC | How to develop the POC | What is the POC used for?

Program Strategy (PS)

Explaining the contents of the Program Strategy | How to develop the Program Strategy | What is the Program Strategy used for?



Professor Mike Ryan holds BE, MEngSc and PhD degrees in electrical engineering from the University of New South Wales. He is a Fellow of Engineers Australia (FIEAust), a Chartered Professional Engineer (CPEng) in systems engineering, electrical and ITEE colleges, a Senior Member of IEEE (SMIEEE), a Fellow of the International Council on Systems Engineering (FINCOSE), and a Fellow of the Institute of Managers and Leaders (FIML). Since 1981, he has held a number of positions in communications and systems engineering and in management and project management. Since 1998, he has been with the School of Engineering and Information Technology, University of New South Wales, at the Australian Defence Force Academy where he is currently the Director of the Capability Systems Centre. His research and teaching interests are in communications and information systems, requirements engineering, systems engineering, project management, and technology management. He is the Editor-in-Chief of an international journal, and is Co-Chair of the Requirements Working Group INCOSE. He is the author or co-author of twelve books, three book chapters, and over 250 technical papers and reports.

Dr Shari Soutberg has over 30 years experience in Defence, with a focus on materiel acquisition, sustainment, organisational improvement and reform.  Shari is currently an Industry Fellow at the UNSW Capability System Centre.  Significant activities include development of a framework for delivery of joint force outcomes and training courses on capability development practices applicable to Defence.  Prior to this, Shari was the acting Chief Systems Engineer for CASG and a member of the First Principles Review (FPR) Capability Lifecycle (CLC) team which developed capability management reform initiatives.  As Director Systems Engineering and later Director Materiel Engineering in CASG, Shari led the development and implementation of Defence engineering policy and guidance, including fundamental changes arising from the WHS Act 2011.  Shari provided stewardship of the Defence Engineering and Technical Job Family through establishing learning and development structures. She also supported Defence corporate engineering and technical workforce planning including industrial relations engagement.  Whilst in the Office of the Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Industry, Shari was a significant contributor to the Defence Industry Policy leading to the role of Director Industry Policy. After joining the Department of Defence, Shari worked on maritime platforms and equipment and as a project manager for naval projects.  Shari has a Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical), Masters of Management Economics, and a Doctor of Philosophy which addressed requirements development in Defence capability management.


12 April 2021 - 13 April 2021
12 October 2021 - 13 October 2021