Consulting Engineering in Foreign Countries

by E. Montford Fucik,

Serial Information: Journal of the Professional Practice, 1964, Vol. 90, Issue 1, Pg. 37-46

Document Type: Journal Paper


Consulting in foreign lands is attracting more and more United States engineers. United states government and international financing institutions, in sponsoring a multitude of projects around the world, have fostered the offshore effort. According to the experiences of one American firm, engineers will meet several unusual factors in foreign consulting. In negotiating contracts one will frequently be squeezed between the ethics of the United States profession and foreign governments' insistence on price bidding competitions. American engineers will find that European practice regarding detailed design and drawing is quite different from theirs. The fact that Europeans commonly assign this work to contractors makes United States charges for engineering services, which include the detail, look overly high in comparison. Constant efforts are needed to educate and convince foreign clients of the benefits of the American system. United States engineers should be careful of compensation provisions in contracts. Inherent uncertainties make cost-plus rather than lump-sum compensation more suitable.

Subject Headings: Consulting services | State government | Financing | Negotiation | Ethics | Pricing | Bids | Competition | United States

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