We Can Look Forward to a Lot of Positives This Year

January 10, 2013
2013 Report Card graphic

ASCE’s 2013 Report Card is sure to make news in March.

I hope your 2013 is off to a good start. It’s sure to be an interesting one filled with new opportunities for ASCE members. Even with the shaky state of the economy, I am very optimistic about the civil engineering profession, especially when we look at what’s to come in each of ASCE’s three strategic initiatives.

Sustainability: We should see more civil engineers throughout our profession embracing sustainability concepts as the urgency becomes more apparent and techniques are more widely disseminated and used. 2013 will be the first full year that infrastructure projects will be evaluated as sustainable by the Envision certification rating system, launched last year by the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure, which was co-founded by ASCE with the American Council of Engineering Companies and the American Public Works Association. The institute also offers certification for professionals in the proper application of Envision and its standards.

Raise the Bar: We will make continued steady progress in preparing for a future in which the growing complexities of engineering practice will require licensed civil engineers to have additional advanced higher education. That will be one part of bringing the profession closer to realizing The Vision for Civil Engineering in 2025. ASCE will continue to work with the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying, the National Society of Professional Engineers and other prominent friends of the Raise the Bar initiative to move toward implementation of greater educational requirements for licensure. Work ahead includes more workshops to train advocates of the initiative, subsequent outreach, and state-level implementation developments. Learn more about the initiative at RaiseTheBarForEngineering.org.

Infrastructure: This year is the first in some time that federally funded surface transportation projects can move forward on solid ground, following the passage last summer of MAP-21, the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act. And this year will be huge for what ASCE will bring to the table. First, a final Failure to Act report will be released next week, with new study results that will summarize the economic impact that lack of investment in infrastructure could have on the nation. Then on March 19, ASCE will make national news with the release of our 2013 Report Card for America’s Infrastructure. A panel of your professional peers is putting the finishing touches on the once-every-four-years magnum opus, which will update the grades in every infrastructure category, provide estimated costs to upgrade infrastructure to a satisfactory condition, and offer suggestions for raising the grades.

What are you looking forward to in 2013? What would you like to see happen? What do you think we can expect from ASCE’s three key initiatives? Let me know in the comments below.

  • Elizabeth R. Apgar Triano

    Keep up the good words, and good works! Public outreach by ASCE administration and members helps the “laity” (support staff, family members, etc.) encourage STEM education. ASCEville is a nice idea, but it’s kind of lame.
    I am heartened to read intelligent words from educated engineers, and I hope that more people will write articles about exciting projects, which will in turn encourage young people to consider this noble profession.

  • Well said and analyzed sir. I would add the field of Green building, ocean and wind power generation and the Disaster mitigation as field worthy of follow up in 2013 and years to come.

  • All 3 of ASCE’s initiatives are significant pursuits that require significant resources. ASCE is up to the challenge! Individual civil engineers may ask how they can impact these initiatives. In the area of sustainability, the answer is easy – become a Sustainability Professional through the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure. The process of becoming and ENV SP is simple and straightforward. Go the sustainableinfrastructure.org and follow the directions. Becoming an SP will put civil engineers on the front lines of changing the way that we replace existing infrastucture and add new infrastructure as we rebuild our cities. ASCE can be proud of its role in the founding of ISI. ASCE members can benefit by becoming ENV SP’s.

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