Three global engineering institutions pledge to work together to achieve the UN SDGs

2/11/2018

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The Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE) signed an agreement in London last week.

The presidents of the ICE, the ASCE and the CSCE have made a statement of intent to work closely together to solve the world’s problems as outlined by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

The three organisations meet every three years to outline their plans. This year’s meeting took place at the ICE’s inaugural Global Engineering Congress (GEC), where more than 2,000 people from over 70 countries gathered to share ideas of how to engineer more sustainably.  

“Using the SDGs as our framework, and the GEC as the forum, we intend to bring about transformative change in the way infrastructure is conceived, planned, financed, designed, built and maintained,” the statement read.

In a keynote session chaired by Andrew Wyllie, incoming ICE President and CEO of Costain, the presidents of ASCE and CSCE talked about their roadmap to sustainability and the use of sustainable development digital tools, respectively. 

This was before the current ICE President, Professor Lord Robert Mair (pictured), along with ASCE President Robin Kemper and CSCE President Glenn Hewus, read out the three main parts of the statement of intent.  

Leadership and collaboration 

The first section of the statement, read by Lord Mair, focuses on leadership, advocacy and collaboration: 

“We will display leadership by requiring that our members demonstrate a sound knowledge of sustainable development, the SDGs and the 2030 Agenda,” he said. 

Through their public policy work, the three organisations agreed to advocate the benefits of taking a sustainable approach to development. 

They also said that they will “collaborate with other engineering institutions, as well as engage with those outside of engineering, to deliver the multi-discipline solutions required to achieve the SDGs”. 

Knowledge, skills and capacity building 

Mr Hewus read out the second part of the statement, which focussed on skills: 

“We will share knowledge on how to engage with the challenges outlined in the SDGs, how individuals can tackle these in their daily practice, how schools and universities can foster related content into their curricula, and how institutions can develop frameworks to enable sustainable development.” 

Telling the story 

Meanwhile, Ms Kemper talked about the third section, which is about how the engineers can highlight the work that they do. 

“We will celebrate our success and share our setbacks with political and social constituencies and other stakeholders,” she read. 

“We will tell the story of the lives that have been improved through civil engineering and raise awareness around the challenges that still need to be addressed.”

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Institution of Civil Engineers - East of England Region

ICE is an international membership organisation that promotes and advances civil engineering around the world. ICE is a qualifying body, a centre for the exchange of specialist knowledge, and a provider of resources to encourage innovation and excellence in the profession worldwide. Contact: iceeastofengland@ice.org.uk - t: +44 (0)1223 842067

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