Last month, following the annual elections, the Council elected a new six-person Coordinating Committee for the coming year and they in turn asked me to be their Chair. So, warm greetings to our Members around the world from me and the Committee. We have already vowed to make Council meetings and communications more effective and proactive than previously.
Council is made up of 28 elected members, all the Chairs of UK and International Regions, industrial Boards and technical Groups, four Young Members, immediate Past Presidents, the Chair of our Diversity and Inclusion Committee and the President. That’s 78 people in total.
Our first order of business has been to engage Council Members in a consultation exercise concerning the recommendations made by the Governance Review team. The Governance Review was initiated last year as an outcome of our Special Meeting. Details can be found in the Governance section of the website. There has been a great response to this, as there has been throughout the last year, with so many people investing huge amounts of their valuable time and energy to ensure the most successful future for our Institution. We owe them all a great deal of gratitude.
We are also reconstituting a sub-group of Council to look at our profession in respect of a more integrated future. This was explored a few years ago by Professor John Uff, commissioned by the IMechE, ICE and IET and resulting in his report UK Engineering 2016. It carried a strong message of the need for coordination and collaboration by the UK professional engineering institutions. While we all hone our specialist skills, we need to work together as integrated teams – across the historic disciplines and institutional divides – and to embrace diversity and inclusion. It is a primary role of Council to consider and advise the Trustees on matters of the Institution’s strategy, of which few things can be more important than this. You can expect to see more about it before too long.
Did you know that Young Members make up over half our corporate membership? That does not include the Student Affiliates – there are a further 40,000 of them – who represent our bridge between encouraging young people to pursue science and engineering to becoming members of our profession. This is another extremely important focus of attention. Our Membership, Accreditation and Professional Development Team does a marvellous job of helping people along that path, while maintaining the very high standards that define us. They are supported by an incredible group of dedicated volunteers across several committees and panels, all helping to make young people’s dreams come true.
Finally, I want to make a big plea to you all to check your Profile on our website. Please go through each tab and make sure they are fully completed and accurate. This is how we match your industrial and technical interests to the Divisions and Groups. The address you give sets the Region where local events are organised for you. These details help us give you a more personalised and engaged member experience, help us to improve our services and together achieve our charitable goals.
I am looking forward eagerly to the coming year and the achievements we are aiming for.
Chair of Council Coordinating Committee