GEDC 2019: Engineering as Social Transformation
Universidad Católica Dean of Engineering, Juan Carlos de la Llera, spoke about the workshops at the Global Engineering Deans Council Conference.
The world’s most important gathering of deans of engineering (Global Engineering Deans Council, GEDC), organized in Chile by the Universidad Católica’s School of Engineering, debated the necessity of a permanent dialogue between engineering and other disciplines in order to achieve appropriate social transformations.
The dean of Engineering, Juan Carlos de la Llera, who applied for the country to be the venue of the international meeting, said that this eleventh edition of the GEDC had the “most humanistic” agenda in its history. It covered topics including climate change, the skills needed by today’s engineers and the state of women in the sciences among other challenges.
“The institutional configuration is becoming obsolete due the speed at which society is evolving”, specified the academic authority in summarizing the main challenges that this degree program must confront in order achieve better social integration and contribute to the development of society and the planet.
The dean highlighted the similarities between social demands and the need for change in the degree program. In his opinion “it’s strange the extent that engineering, with its high level of sophistication, has neglected the impact that tremendous technologies cause, in areas such as the environment.
For De la Llera, the lack of equilibrium, adaptation and adjustments could be the origin of a good part of the problems that confront society today. “This is a demonstration that the unrest we are experiencing is characteristic of development, and is born out of the imbalance which is produced between this process and expectations”, he added.
The GEDC’s international event aspires to build a single working document that contributes to improving the training of future engineers, “… as many of them will have positions of great responsibility and influence”, the dean pointed out.
“The GEDC must be able to raise this manifesto with governments and institutions to coordinate strategies”, affirmed the UC Engineering‘s academic authority.
For ten years, the GEDC has coordinated a support network for deans of engineering in order for them to play a leadership role in terms of quality of education, as well as regional and national public policy which supports national development.