With the goal of promoting mutual cooperation and shared activities with ASCE, a delegation from Norway’s Tekna (Teknisk-naturvitenskapelig forening, Norwegian Society of Graduate Technical and Scientific Professionals) visited ASCE March 18-19, during their trip to the U.S.
The “visit of opportunity” included ASCE and Tekna signing an Agreement of Cooperation (AOC), officially establishing communication and joint activities between the 2 engineering organizations. Representing professionals with a master’s degree or equivalent in science and technology, including all engineering disciplines, Tekna has a steadily growing membership of 60,000, including 10,000 student members.
The Tekna officials, who expressed interest in the development of the ASCE Report Card for America’s Infrastructure and ASCE’s government relations program, also attended the press conference held to release ASCE’s 2013 Report Card. Because Norway has an enormous oil and gas industry in the North Sea, with conditions very different from those in the Gulf of Mexico, part of Tekna’s visit to the U.S. included meeting with a number of Norwegians working in Houston, Texas, who are employed in the oil and gas industry. The delegation was eager to learn more about the challenges facing them in this industry.
The meeting with ASCE was a follow-up to the ASCE presidential visit to Europe last June, when ASCE’s then-President Andrew W. Herrmann, P.E., SECB, F.ASCE and Executive Director Patrick J. Natale, P.E., CAE, F.ASCE visited Norway and held discussions with the leadership of Tekna.
Tekna President Marianne Harg, who previously met with Herrmann and Natale in Norway, led the delegation that included Tekna’s Vice-President Lise Lyngsnes Randeberg, Secretary General Ivar Horneland Kristensen, and Eli Haugerud, who serves as special advisor to the Tekna staff.
In addition to Herrmann and Natale, ASCE representatives at the meeting included Michael R. Sanio, CAE, ENV SP, M.ASCE, ASCE’s director of Sustainability and International Alliances, Carol W. Bowers, P.G., CAE, ASCE’s managing director of Member Communities, and Martin Hight, ASCE’s senior manager for Government Relations.
While in Oslo last June, Herrmann and Natale attended the Tekna Conference on Climate Change, where the Norwegians were seeking to find solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in their country. They also had discussions with Harg and Tekna’s board of directors, exchanging information on the operations of the 2 organizations, and found much in common in the areas of ASCE’s 3 strategic initiatives: sustainability, infrastructure, and raising the bar.