Julien started working in project management in the Australian public sector delivering organizational change projects, where he completed an Action Research Ph.D. This research won national and international awards. Following this, he managed telecommunications and heavy engineering projects, before taking an academic position in 2011 to teach project management. He is now an Associate Professor at the University of Sydney. His research focuses on two broad themes: trends in project management research; and developing project management practice to meet the needs of projects that cannot be pre-defined in simple and stable terms. He has successively drawn on systems thinking, complexity theory, and change management to address this latter area of research, particularly focusing on the delivery of organisational change projects. His research in these areas is frequently published in the leading international project management journals and research conferences.
Julien explores multiple aspects of project management, with the broad aim of helping to transform the discipline into one that addresses the needs of complex and uncertain environments. This includes investigation of teams and team building, project management methodology, and projects with ill-defined objectives and outcomes, such as those found in organisational change projects.