Michael Gainford

Principal Consultant and Course Presenter


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Michael Gainford is a Principal Consultant with Project Performance International, contributing in both the training and consulting roles to the success of PPI’s and CTI’s clients. Michael comes to PPI/CTI with decades of experience in systems engineering, product and process development, programme management, and business change management, applied in complex international projects, including safety-critical situations. During his career Michael has worked across most of the major life cycle phases, for example research & technology, concept definition, product development, legacy product replacement and in-service support.

Michael holds a degree in Engineering and has applied systems engineering principles in a range of application domains: fixed wing and rotary wing aircraft, spacecraft on board systems, gas turbines, banking systems, automotive, railway systems, and energy systems.

During Michael’s extensive career at Rolls-Royce, where he held a number of senior managerial positions including Head of Control Systems Preliminary Design, he completed an MSc degree in Project Management at the University of Manchester, to complement his engineering education.

Prior to joining Project Performance International and Certification Training International, Michael was a systems engineering consultant for the Energy Systems Catapult, a UK body that accelerates the realisation of CO2 reduction solutions. Whilst in that position he initiated the formation of the INCOSE UK Energy Systems Interest Group and was elected as Group Chair. As Head of Systems Engineering for Altran UK Ltd., he was instrumental in the company’s success in achieving CMMI Level 3. He also carried out training and coaching roles for a number of high-profile UK-based organisations.

Michael participated in the development of the international standard ARP 4754 and developed a strong interest in process definition. He has particular interests in product platform strategies, organisational capability models, and the synergies between project management and systems engineering. Michael’s papers on “Non-linear vibrations in a drive train when coupled to constant torque and constant power loads” and “The meaning of Validation in the SIRT process model” were published in AIAA 89-2922, July 1989 and ERA 92-0809, April 1993 respectively.

Michael is an active member of INCOSE (the International Council on Systems Engineering) and has achieved the status of ESEP (Expert Systems Engineering Practitioner). He volunteered as a certification application reviewer for both CSEP and ESEP applications. He co-authored “Harambe – the Only Way to Net Zero” for the INCOSE UK Annual Systems Engineering Conference, 2020, and was lead author for the INCOSE UK Z Guide Z 14: “An introduction to systems approaches for Small to Medium Enterprises”.

He is also a past employer representative to the INCOSE UK Advisory Board.

Affiliations and memberships include:

  • Chartered Engineer (CEng)
  • Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society (FRAeS)
  • Expert Systems Engineering Professional (ESEP) – International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE)
  • Member of INCOSE (MINCOSE).

Michael speaks French and German, both at conversational levels.

Courses Presented

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