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Policy Statement 417 - Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion


Approved by the Members of Society Advancing an Inclusive Culture on August 25, 2020
Approved by the Public Policy Committee on August 27, 2020
Adopted by the Board of Direction on October 26, 2020


The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) fosters a fully inclusive culture that celebrates individual uniqueness, engenders a sense of belonging, and promotes equitable opportunity for all people to participate as members and stakeholders of the civil engineering community regardless of identity. ASCE and its members are committed to inclusive engineering problem solving that recognizes, values, and addresses the unique needs of diverse demographic, social, economic, and cultural groups when considering, balancing, and mitigating societal, environmental, and economic impacts of our work. This includes a commitment to:

  • Eradicating discrimination and harassment in all its forms;
  • Building mutually beneficial partnerships with engineering and non-engineering organizations to bolster the collective impact of our efforts;
  • Advancing a research agenda centered on equitable and inclusive engineering education, research, and practice;
  • Promoting accountability and the use of best practices for diversity, equity, and inclusion in leadership, engagement, communications, and partnerships; and
  • Fulfilling our roles as leaders, major contributors, or supporters toward the attainment of each of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.


The engineering profession and ASCE membership lack representation of people from identity groups that provide the diverse perspectives of the communities we serve. The lack of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the civil engineering profession limits capacity to effectively meet societal needs. Over the last several decades progress has been made to varying degrees through awareness, education, and action. Currently, more efforts are needed to fully realize inclusive and equitable practices in our profession, to assure representation of the rich diversity of our global communities, and to produce just societal outcomes from our work.


The well-being of our global society will rely greatly on the civil engineering profession to provide leadership, innovation, and stewardship of our changing world. ASCE recognizes the strategic and critical importance of equitable and inclusive engagement to develop and implement just, holistic solutions with the communities we serve throughout the world. 

With a global membership and an evolving workforce that competes in the global market, it is important for ASCE to have a policy that communicates our commitment to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion while recognizing, respecting, and valuing the people and the unique cultures impacted by our profession worldwide. ASCE members, prospective members, and other stakeholders are hereby empowered to share their expertise and perspectives toward the protection of public health, safety, and welfare.

This policy has worldwide application
ASCE Policy Statement 417
First Approved in 1993