Nick Baveystock: 'GEC has shown that we can turn words into action'

The ICE Director General reflects on the achievements of the Global Engineering Congress. 

Nick Baveystock, ICE Director General, has called for engineers to continue to build on the success of the Global Engineering Congress (GEC).

“This GEC has shown that we can turn words into action. We now need to take that forward,” he said in his GEC closing message.

“We can’t lose the momentum of everything that we have done here. And bluntly, if not us, then who?”


The GEC, organised by ICE and the World Federation of Engineering Organizations (WFEO), brought together more than 2,000 delegates from over 70 countries, including government delegations from over 18 countries.

“We came with the mandate of the UN Secretary General to turn words into action,” Baveystock said.

“We came to look at how the global engineering profession can decide how it is going to support the delivery of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”

‘This is what engineers can do when they come together’

According to Baveystock, the “stunning” week saw engineers share knowledge on a wide range of “real” issues that the world will face over the coming years, such as population growth and climate change.

“We’ve seen how people have talked about smart cities. We’ve seen talk about sewerage. We’ve seen talk about clean water. This is what engineers can do when they come together.

“This GEC has proved just what a global profession can achieve when it puts its mind to it,” he said.

Read more about what happened at GEC

Day one  Day two  Day three  Day four  Day five

GEC in figures

  • 2,500 delegates for the main programme
  • 1,000 delegates at the fringe and evening programme
  • 200 speakers
  • 100 main programme sessions
  • 82 different countries
  • 50 global engineering partnerships
  • 18 government delegations
  • 13.5 million impressions on Twitter