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ECEC Newsletter October 2015

International Guests at 12th ECEC General Assembly

On 26 September 2015, the 12th ECEC General Assembly meeting took place in Rome. 32 delegates from the ECEC member organisations as well as guests from other international engineering organisations participated.

WFEO President Marwan Abdelhamid, ECCE President Wlodzimierz Szymczak, FEANI Secretary General Dirk Bochar, Secretary General of Federation of Arab Engineers (FAE) Adil Al-Hadithi all expressed the importance of cooperation among Engineering organisations and their willingness to enforce their cooperation with the ECEC. Some cooperation projects with FEANI and ECCE are quite concrete already, one will be the elaboration of Common Training Frameworks for Engineers, the second one will be the next “edition” of the European Engineers’ Day in 2017.

Secretary for International Affairs at the Chamber of Engineers of Malta Paul Micallef and President of the Union of Scientific and Engineering Associations of Ukraine Nikolay (SNIO) Kiryukhin presented their organisations in view to further cooperation with the ECEC / potential (associated) membership in the ECEC.  SNIO represents approximately 81.000 members from 19 branches and over 200 member associations in the Ukraine; CEO represents several hundred electrical and mechanical Engineers in Malta and exists since 1978.

The 12th ECEC General Assembly meeting was the final meeting of the term 2013-2015, therefore President Remec reviewed the last three years of ECEC activities.

Please find the Report on ECEC activities 2013 – 2015 here

ECEC Elections 2015

At the 12th ECEC General Assembly meeting in Rome, the elections of the new Executive Board 2016-2018 and the election of the ECEC Auditors for 2016 took place.

Current President Crtomir Remec , Vice-Presidents Hansjörg Letzner and Dragoslav Sumarac,  Secretary-General Klaus Thürriedl and Treasurer Gabor Szöllössy were all re-elected in their positions for the next term of office (1.1.2016 – 31.12.2018)

ECEC Vice-President Hans-Ullrich Kammeyer, who has filled the position of Vice-President for the maximum of two terms will resign with the end of the year 2015. In his farewell address to the GAM he expressed his and his Chambers willingness to support the new Executive Board whenever necessary.

Zygmunt Meyer resigned as Auditor and was elected as new ECEC Vice-President. Also long-term Auditor Mirko Orescovic resigned from this position, the GAM had to elect two new Auditors for the 2015 balance and opted for Thomas Noebel from the German Chamber of Engineers and Stelios Achniotis, President of the Technical Chamber of Cyprus.

The new team at a glance:
  • President: Crtomir Remec, Slovenia
  • Vice-Presidents: Hansjörg Letzner, Italy / Zygmunt Meyer, Poland / Dragoslav Sumarac, Serbia
  • Secretary General: Klaus Thürriedl, Austria
  • Treasurer: Gabor Szöllössy , Hungary

Auditors for Balance 2015
  • Stelios Achnitotis, Cyprus
  • Thomas Noebel, Germany

Common Training Framework

The European Engineering Organisations strongly agree upon the importance of the establishment of “Common Training Frameworks” for European Engineers not only for a simplification of professional recognition procedures, but also for setting a minimum qualifications level and raising the awareness of the European Commission in regard to the high level of knowledge, skills and competences necessary to execute the Engineering profession authorized and independently. They also agree on the absolute necessity of close cooperation in that field. Therefore, ECEC SG Thürriedl already met with ECCE President Szymczak in June and FEANI Secretary General Dirk Bochar in early September to clarify the planned approaches to CTF in all three organisations. Whereas Common Training Frameworks shall be defined for all levels of Engineering qualifications, the focus of ECEC in the whole process will be on the independent authorized Engineers as the highest level of professional registration. It is the clear position of ECEC that the requirement for them has to be level 7 of the European Professional Qualifications Framework  (=  knowledge level according to Bologna 2nd cycle / Master degree).During the next months the details of cooperation and further steps will be clarified by the ECEC Task Force CTF – hopefully based on the Guideline on CTF that has been promised by the European Commission but has not yet been issued. As soon as the necessary work packages are defined more detailed the ECEC Working Group CTF will take up its work. ECEC member organisations are still invited to nominate participants for the WG CTF.

On 26 September 2015 following the 12th ECEC General Assembly meeting Nicola Monda - CNI Consigliere und initiator of many important international and European Engineering Networks - organized a Common Training workshop with participants from CNI, ECEC, FEANI and others that again offered an opportunity to exchange positions and clarify possible ways of cooperation. 

ECEC Declaration on performance profiles for Engineering Services

ECEC declaration “Independence of engineering services saves people’s money - Performance profiles for Engineering Services: Cost optimization and quality assurance” was prepared by the ECEC WG on the fee scale situation in Europe -  chaired by ECEC Vice-President Hansjörg Letzner  - and adopted by the ECEC General Assembly on 26 September 2015 in Rome.

The declaration intends to better explain the relationship of quality and performance profiles and as a consequence of price and quality.  It is based on a very interesting Italian study (available only in Italian) that proves – by means of comparing the outcomes of a high number of public building projects - that good and detailed planning and the provision of the whole necessary range of engineering services prevents costs and quality problems.

The ECEC declaration is to be seen as a specialised addition to the ECEC 9 arguments for professional regulation in Europe. Especially in regard to the infringement procedure against the German HOAI it is important to promote the declaration and to use – also on national level – its argumentation. The ECEC declaration will also be transmitted on European level.

Please find the ECEC declaration here.

Continuous Professional Development

Within the pilot project on ECEC CPD lectures on relevant European topics are offered to the ECEC member organisations and their members by Webinar. The intention of the ECEC is to stress the importance of (obligatory) CPD for independent authorized Engineers  and at the same time offer them easily accessible information for which they also can get CPD points. At the 12th ECEC General Assembly meeting in Rome, Vice-President and WG CPD chairman Dragoslav Sumarac presented the Guidelines/Common Standards of CPD for the  organization/co-organisation of ECEC Webinars.  At the moment four lectures are planned for the year 2016, including two lectures covering the topic of energy efficiency of buildings.

The Executive Board has also discussed the potential value of a system, in which different ECEC member organisations organise / finance and tape lectures and then offer it to a common ECEC CPD site where all lectures could be downloaded by interested Engineers anytime.  The Executive Board will further discuss the feasibility of such a project.

Chairman of the WG Vice President Sumarac requests all ECEC member organisations to find lecturers who are eminent experts in an engineering field that is especially relevant in Europe.

Contact: dragoslav.sumarac@ingkomora.rs

A comprehensive version of the CPD Guidelines/Common Standards can be read here.

German Bundestag: Proposal to co-create the European Commission Transparency Initiative

As current infringement procedures against liberal professional regulations in several member states show, the European Commission is still very determined about professional deregulation.

Nevertheless, slowly but steady signs of rethinking are visible on different levels: More and more economists contradict the deregulatory approach of the Commission and the circulated number on growth potential. Finally, resistance is also noticeable in politics, as for example the proposal of the German Bundestag “to co-create the European Commission Transparency Initiative - to maintain reliable standards in trade and in the liberal professions” clearly shows.

The German Bundestag requests the Government to consider arguments to protect professional regulation – including the German HOAI - and the resulting high quality services of the liberal professions when drafting the National action plan required by the European Commission’s Transparency Initiative, which is based on the Professional Qualifications Directive.

This proposal very clearly stresses and explains the importance of maintaining high quality professional standards. It will hopefully give an example to other member states and also make the European Commission rethink some of their approaches.