Since taking on his role at the beginning of November, ICE’s new President, Professor Barry Clarke, has been following a busy schedule fulfilling his responsibilities and putting his vision into practice to:
- Inspire the next generation to become civil engineers
- Use skills and knowledge to create innovative solutions
- Inform government decision-making
One of Barry’s key activities involves visiting the regions. Here are some of the highlights:
The visit to Scotland was very positive, with an opportunity to meet the graduates working on the Forth Replacement Crossing, an inspirational world class project.
It is an exciting period to visit the region, with the Commonwealth Games taking place in Glasgow in 2014 and the North East on the cusp of the next generation of developments in energy. The venues I visited are of magnificent stature showing quality, precision, retrofit, adaptability and regeneration.”
President’s thoughts on the trip
- Presentation to students at London South Bank University – students debated the future of engineering and their employment prospects
- Meeting with Hong Kong delegation to examine the infrastructure developments and future opportunities for UK companies based in Hong Kong
- Meeting with Andrew Miller MP, Peter Luff MP and industry leaders to discuss ways to engage and support those who can inspire the next generation (such as industry professionals, academics, STEM ambassadors and others)
- Discussions with representatives from HE and FE institutions, and industry representatives in Aberdeen on the local employment situation
- Events in London with leading charitable bodies and industrialists
- Discussions in Northern Ireland with graduates and students about local activities and priorities, and a meeting with parliamentarians to discuss the Northern Ireland Infrastructure plan.
- Visit to the South West to meet members working on recent projects as well as the chairs of the ‘city’s clubs’ (hubs where members from different parts of the region gather for events and meetings)
Leading the debate
A range of thought-provoking topics were raised during the three-week tour. In particular, one theme that kept re-emerging was the vulnerability of infrastructure resulting from severe weather; train cancellations (to Scotland) due to landslips and flooding; delays caused by sea water (South West) and equipment failure (North); and cancellations because of faulty electric overheads.
Leading and informing debates and influencing policies will continue be one of the President’s key objectives.
Barry Clarke will continue his travels during 2013. This month, he will be visiting Sri Lanka and India to promote our key messages to members and society in general; to make contact with UK companies based there; and to maintain dialogue with organisations such as UK Trade and Investment.