This paper provides a road map to studies and databases about civil engineering demographics and industry involvement by tracing workforce statistics, engineering degrees, data on industries and government, and economic forecasts. It is aimed at helping civil engineering managers, educators, and policymakers understand how their workforce evolved and what it will face in the future. The engineering workforce comprises about 1.5 million professionals in the United States (second in size only to that of teachers); of this number, civil engineering, at about 200,000 workers, is third behind electrical and mechanical engineering. However, the study shows that aggregation of workforce and economic statistics hides unique characteristics of civil engineering work caused by the concentration on consulting and state and local government. In fact, over 80% of civil engineers work either for consultants or government. During the past century, civil engineering has been a steady field with good opportunities, but civil engineers in the future will face the same career issues and pressures as other professionals. Global production of new engineers has now passed the one million-per-year mark, with U.S. production being about 12% of the total. This large supply of engineers will present intense competition to all engineering disciplines. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) faces many challenges to respond to the many changes in the civil engineering profession. The concept of institutes contained in ASCE's strategic plan will address many of the technical issues, but the study indicates that professional and educational issues need more attention.


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  • Accession Number: 00795701
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 18 2000 12:00AM