Last year, Maurice Buckley, Engineers Ireland president, challenged the organisation's regional branches, engineering divisions and societies to collaborate on cross-sectoral project to assist the national recovery. This resulted in three excellent initiatives: Sustainability Grand Tour, Brexit Lecture Series and the virtual site visit technology project. The first two of these drew to a close on May 13, writes Richard Manton.

Sustainability Grand Tour

The Sustainability Grand Tour explored the role of engineers in developing more sustainable cities and communities. The weekly webinar series was a collaboration between 10 sectors of Engineers Ireland: West, South East, Cork, Northern, Midlands, GB and North East Regions, the Energy, Environment and Climate Action Division and the Roads and Transportation and Academic Societies.

The 19 recorded webinars provide 16 hours of free CPD on a diverse range of topics such as transport, construction, housing, energy efficiency, UN SDGs, education, manufacturing, sustainable energy, and biodiversity. The closing event reflected on what we learned along the way with a focus on lessons for public policy, including an address by Minister Eamon Ryan.

“Climate change and biodiversity loss are possibly the most fundamental problems we face as a society," said Buckley. "Engineers Ireland has been building momentum in action on sustainability, from the Declaration of a Climate and Biodiversity Emergency to the publication of the Sustainability Framework to this Sustainability Grand Tour.

"The interdisciplinary, collaborative aspect of the Tour has been a major success. I would like to thank Minister Ryan and our expert panel of speakers for sharing their experience and we look forward to further collaborations which will be vital for action on climate change and biodiversity loss.” 

You can find out more about the Sustainability Grand Tour and watch the recording of each event here:

Brexit Lecture Series

The Brexit Lecture Series explored the impact of Brexit on engineering, business and trade in Ireland and the UK. An engaging set of speakers from manufacturing, construction, education and consultancy addressed four webinars. The closing event considered the legal ramifications of Brexit on labour and resourcing, goods and materials, standards and regulations, and opportunities and risks.

The recordings of the series are relevant not only to engineers and business leaders on both sides of the Irish Sea, but also to members with an interest in Brexit and the new trade reality. The Brexit Lecture Series was a collaboration between the Donegal Region, GB Region, North East Region, North West Region and Northern Region. 

To view the recordings of the Brexit Lecture Series and to read a summary of each event, view:

A community of dedicated volunteers

Together, the Sustainability Grand Tour and Brexit Lecture Series comprised 23 recorded webinars which attracted 6,000+ attendees/views, providing 20 hours of free CPD and a lot of ideas, case studies and links. This demonstrates the knowledge, connectivity and dedication of Engineers Ireland’s community.

Our community of Regions, Divisions and Societies facilitates networking and connectivity, encourages continuing professional development and the exchange of knowledge and expertise, and informs public policy.

You can join these communities and groups by logging into your member dashboard here. Over the past year, Engineers Ireland's Regional branches, Engineering divisions and Societies have been incredibly busy, holding more than 250 online events with more than 23,000 attendees.

As part of National Volunteering Week 2021, Engineers Ireland recognised and celebrated the volunteering efforts of our members and their positive contribution to Ireland’s engineering community. This includes the pivotal role of volunteers in our regional branches, engineering divisions and societies. We profiled a selection of our volunteers, including Ronan Keane and the Cork region committee (read more here).

If you would like to volunteer with our Sectors, why not attend one of the upcoming AGMs:

  • Tuesday, May 18, 6.30pm: AGM of the Mechanical and Manufacturing division, register here
  • Wednesday, May 19, 6.45pm: AGM of the Roads and Transportation society), register here
  • Thursday, May 20, 7pm: AGM of the Fire and Safety division, register here; 7pm: AGM of the GB region, register here
  • Tuesday, May 25, 7.30pm: AGM of the Young Engineers Society, register here
  • Thursday, May 27, 5.30pm: AGM of the Electrical and Electronic division, register here; 7pm: AGM of the Local Government division, register here
  • Tuesday, June 1, 5.30pm: AGM of the Structures and Construction division, register here

Author: Richard Manton is deputy registrar and policy officer at Engineers Ireland