I saw this graphic on the Critical Path blog about the most recent number of PMI-ACP (Agile Certified Practitioner) certifications to be awarded in the month of January 2012:
The PMP is still the king of the hill at 4047 new PMPs, but the 2nd place finish of the ACP certification is pretty surprising given how new this is. As the blog states, "PMI-ACP reached a number in one month that took the other certification a few years".
This got me thinking of the overall adoption of Agile/Scrum certifications and how to graph its progression. Thankfully, Google has a tool called "Google Insights for Search" that graphically shows the number of searches on their site for key terms. Typing in "Scrum Master Certification" revealed the following growth since 2004:
Since 2006, it has been an explosive growth! Typing "PMP Certification" revealed this graph:
Which shows a consisteny, yet slighly downward trend. When you combine the two, you see a surprising divergence:
I wouldn't read these as an authoritative graphical representations of the correlation of adoption between the two certifications or growing popularity of Agile/Scrum over PMI/PMBOK/PMP or visa versa, but it is interesting nevertheless.
If anyone out there knows of or has a more rigorous research comparison I'd like to know. In the meantime, try out and play with Google's search insight.