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Practical skills and techniques for the transition to a sustainable future, a case study for engineering education
Dwyer, Brian; Byrne, Edmond P.
This paper seeks to assess the gap between the visions of sustainable engineering practice with its current reality. A case study involving Energetics Pty. Ltd., a leading Australian multi-disciplinary consultancy specialized in engaging public and private organizations in the development of their responses to climate change and sustainability was conducted based on a staff questionnaire developed following a review of current literature and initiatives on sustainability globally. The results of the survey indicate that sustainability in engineering practice is still focused on the technical and financial impacts of perceived sustainable solutions. The broader aspects that have been identified as necessary have yet to be achieved in education or practice. The principle reason for this appears to lie in the perception engineers have of their practice and the ability of engineers to communicate effectively with their clients. These have combined to make regulation one of the principal drivers in environmental and sustainability engineering. A sustainability informed ethics paradigm needs to be brought more to the fore to allow engineers to engage with their clients in a more effective manner. Engineers do have the opportunity to be agents of change, but only when they envisage a broader societal role and context for engineering and can communicate effectively with the decision makers within their client organisations.
Keyword(s): Sustainability; Engineering education; Sustainable development; Engineers--Professional ethics
Publication Date:
Type: Conference item
Peer-Reviewed: Yes
Language(s): English
Institution: University College Cork
Citation(s): DWYER, B. & BYRNE, E. P. 2010. Practical skills and techniques for the transition to a sustainable future, a case study for engineering education. In: ISEE (International Symposium for Engineering Education), 3rd International Symposium for Engineering Education ISEE2010, Educating Engineers for a Changing World - Leading transformation from an unsustainable global society. University College Cork, Ireland 30 Jun - 2 Jul 2010.
Publisher(s): International Symposium for Engineering Education
File Format(s): application/pdf
First Indexed: 2011-07-08 05:30:41 Last Updated: 2016-10-14 06:48:48