Disclosing Financial Support of Study Reported in Professional Journal
In his annual state of the Society report, which he delivered at the business meeting held on October 21 in Las Vegas in conjunction with the 140th Annual Civil Engineering Conference, Patrick J. Natale, P.E., F.ASCE, ASCE’s executive director, emphasized the membership’s leadership position in a number of areas and assured members that the Society was moving forward its key strategic priorities.
Opening with a discussion of ASCE’s vision that civil engineers are global leaders building a better quality of life, Natale noted that “we are currently working on three strategic priorities: infrastructure, sustainability, and competency.” With respect to infrastructure, he said that “ASCE continues to take the lead promoting the critical need to repair our crumbling national infrastructure” and pointed out that both Blaine D. Leonard, p.e., d.ge, Pres.10.ASCE, and Andrew W. Herrmann, P.E., SECB, F.ASCE, the Society’s president-elect, recently appeared on national news broadcasts to discuss the nation’s neglected infrastructure. He also noted the recent mention of ASCE’s 2009 Report Card for America’s Infrastructure in People magazine and stated that so far 30 state and local “report cards” have been created and released.
“Sustainability is a major issue facing civil engineering, and its impact will continue to grow exponentially in the future,” Natale said. “We are committed to being a leader in sustainability, and to demonstrate that, ASCE is partnering with the American Council of Engineering Companies and the American Public Works Association in the creation of an Institute on Sustainable Infrastructure. Similar in concept to the LEED [Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design] rating tool, this new entity is creating a unique sustainable infrastructure measurement system that will cover all civil infrastructure projects except inhabited buildings. And this system will incorporate a focus on sustainability’s triple bottom line: the economic, social, and environmental impact of these projects. To help you become prepared, ASCE is already creating educational programs for professional certification in sustainability that will be Web based for your convenience.” Natale also noted that sustainability would be the theme of the 141st Annual Civil Engineering Conference.
On the subject of competency, Natale noted that the National Academy of Engineering has said that the exploding body of engineering knowledge cannot be accommodated within the traditional four-year baccalaureate degree. In response to this, he explained, ASCE’s competency strategy is “aiming to raise the competency level for professional civil engineering practice in the future. We’ve made great strides on this initiative, publishing a body of knowledge and [seeing] the adoption of a model engineering licensure law by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying, though significant additional work faces us with the need for each of the various licensing boards to adopt this model for their jurisdiction.”
Within the arena of knowledge and learning, Natale pointed out that ASCE’s technical groups and institutes continue to offer valuable, specialized information for members and that within the past year ASCE had released a new version (ASCE/SEI 7-10) of Minimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures. He also noted that, despite the economic slump, ASCE’s specialty conferences maintained their attendance and increased overall revenue by 10 percent and that the Society had expanded its technical publications. As he reported, there are now 32 journals and more than 1,000 book titles, and ASCE will be launching more than 400 e-books in the coming year.
Natale also noted the recent progress ASCE has made in online and social media communication. “We are increasingly reaching out to our members in nontraditional ways,” he said. “We offer a podcast series highlighting noted civil engineering industry leaders discussing their perspectives and insights into the successful practice of civil engineering. We are also actively using social media—ASCE is on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. In fact, our LinkedIn group has more than twelve thousand members actively discussing civil engineering issues on a daily basis. This is one of the largest association LinkedIn groups on the Web. Additionally, we offer a number of blogs that provide insights from ASCE’s president, a younger member, and some of the institute members who have been involved in postdisaster assessments and have documented their experiences in real time.”
In closing, Natale noted that while it has been a challenging year because of the economy, “we’ve managed our costs, which resulted in a positive year-end financial outcome.” And perhaps most important of all, he said, “ASCE continues to demonstrate our brand attributes: enduring, trusted, responsible, expert, professional, and being a leader in our industry.”
A Question of Ethics Home | Browse by Canon | Browse by topic | Browse by year