Sunday, January 31, 2010


We held our January Council meeting yesterday in Clyde Rd.   It was extremely well attended and, although there are occasional Liaison meetings after Council including yesterday,  I think it was the largest Council participation I've seen to date.

The Finance Committee had met last week and,  I as noted,  the 2009 year has turned out to be fiscally reasonably positive,  especially considering our concerns last summer about a possible loss for the year.

In recent weeks,  Engineers Ireland has had a higher and,  I believe,  good profile in the media in the light of the weather conditions and water management issues.   John Power has both requested,  and directly approached,  a number of spokespeople who can knowledgeably discuss specific issues in a professional manner.  We are keen to build a portfolio of spokespeople across the full range of engineering disciplines,  and appropriate media training and briefings are of course provided.

John also gave an update on the work of the regulation and licensing working group,   which met again recently.   While the work continues,  submissions to the working group would be very welcome.   John hopes to be in a position to put a specific paper on the issue to Council at our next meeting in April.

The Ethics Committee recommended that one of our Members be excluded from our institution after reputed plagiarism in an application for Chartered status.   Council,  after satisfying itself to the nature of the case,  duly accepted the recommendation and a notice will appear in the Journal in due course.

John also gave an update on the plans for the Annual Conference in Cork in April,  including a provisional list of key speakers.   These should be confirmed soon and the conference web site launched in about a fortnight.

PJ Rudden gave an in-depth presentation of the proposed final report from the subcommittee on education of mathematics and science at second level.    In my view,  and I believe in the view of everyone on Council,  this has been an outstanding and insightful piece of work.   Some of the findings are,  to me at least,  slightly startling and the group has produced a pragmatic set of proposals and recommendations.     A national mathematics symposium is being co-hosted by the RIA and TCD next tuesday (apologies:  I cannot find a web reference to it...) and PJ will be presenting aspects of our findings there.   The formal launch of the report will occur during Engineers Week 8th-13th February next.

The Taoiseach will formally launch Engineers Week at Clyde Rd on the morning of 8th February next.

A number of our Members have offered to travel to Haiti to assist in the reconstruction work,  and two are imminently travelling:  we hope it may be possible to send more in due course.

This was,  in fact,  my second last Council meeting as President.   My last such meeting will be next April.

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