Relevance Task Force
Reports to AGM
Participants at APEGGA's Annual General Meeting were challenged to peek
into the future when the APEGGA Task Force on Relevance presented its
preliminary findings on April 28.
The task force, chaired by APEGGA Councillor Linda Van Gastel, P.Eng.,
was formed a year ago to look toward the year 2010 and to examine APEGGA's
future role. It is to develop a plan that would include recommended strategies
and actions enabling the Association to maintain continued relevance and
to serve society.
To date, Ms. Van Gastel explained, the task force has conducted a series
of stakeholder consultations including with Permit holders, sole practitioners,
representatives of the geosciences and emerging disciplines, Consulting
Engineers of Alberta, the provincial government, APEGGA branch chairs
and, through PEGG and Web surveys, with APEGGA members.
Based on these consultations, three key areas of concern are: regulation,
differentiation and communication. Key regulation issues are: improving
mobility; effective regulation of title and practice; accommodating geoscientists,
resolving emerging discipline issues, and enhancing quality control (through
effective minimum standards to protect the public, and qualification-base
Matters relating to differentiation centre on clarifying to all stakeholders
the value of hiring licensed, accountable professional practitioners who
offer independent judgment and ethical practice, and who can provide assurance
of skilled, responsible practice.
Important issues related to communication centre on marketing the value
of professional licensure by conveying this message through a variety
of means to various stakeholders. In addition to focusing on issues in
Alberta, the task force expects to stay tuned to a number of national
issues, such as software engineering, challenges raised in Quebec to licensing
of engineers employed within industry, and the emergence in Ontario of
an engineering advocacy body distinct from Professional Engineers Ontario.
Ms. Van Gastel noted that the Relevance Task Force expects to draw uponfindings
of two other Council task forces, on emerging disciplines, and on the
geosciences. AGM presentations on these task forces also were made by
the task force chairs, Elizabeth Cannon, P.Eng., PhD (emerging disciplines
) and Neil O'Donnell, P.Eng., P.Geol. (geoscience). Findings of these
task forces point to participation in APEGGA by eligible professionals
working in these fields to be lower than in other disciplines. (See also
earlier PEGG articles, May 1999, pages 3 and 11, and January
2000, page 5). Having completed its mandate, the Emerging Disciplines
Task force is handing its findings over to the Relevance Task Force, while
the Geoscience Task Force is expected to continue for another year.