Engineering and Public Service—A Renaissance

by William H. Wisely, (F.ASCE), Exec. Dir. Emeritus; ASCE, New York, NY,

Serial Information: Engineering Issues: Journal of Professional Activities, 1973, Vol. 99, Issue 1, Pg. 1-7

Document Type: Journal Paper


Previously, in referring to civil engineering, I have likened it to a talented symphony orchestra comprising a broad spectrum of specialists in their chosen skills, but too often an orchestra without a conductor! What about this conductor for the engineering orchestra? He is not a generalist, but a new specialist engineer-manager to serve in the management capacities that were mentioned earlier in these remarks. This new specialist might be the engineer-planner, whose presence is so sorely needed among the cadres of experts in the many fields of civil engineering. He might also be the enterprise engineer referred to by Jay Forrester, or the social engineer contemplated by the State University of New York, in a new bachelor degree program that would train a new type of engineer, strong in the behavioral and biological sciences, statistical mathematics, systems modeling, probability theory, and computer systems. He would be the creative original thinker whose specialty would be synthesizing new approaches to society's long-range problems.

Subject Headings: Professional services | Public services | Computer models | Personnel management | Social factors | Colleges and universities | Biological processes | Statistics

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