Bog -med -kuglepen

Summary of the EFCA conference “Global challenges – sustainable solutions: the role of cities companies and consultants” on June 2nd 2017

The conference illustrated the key role played by consulting engineering companies in addressing climate change: adaptation, mitigation and sustainability. But we also got a picture of why the agenda is difficult to handle and what we as industry and as individual companies can and should do better.

The challenge is, simply put, to better understand the customers (or clients). The difficult part is, that the customers' needs are different, depending on whether they are cities like Copenhagen, Amsterdam or megacities outside Europe. Whether they are private companies, such as Novo Nordisk. Or whether they are investors like Danske Capital. Understanding the customers and providing the right and relevant advisory services is a task for you as companies. And a task where collaboration with innovative partners, such as Saint-Gobain, other consulting engineers, city planners or architects, is one way forward. Despite this challenge, one thing was clear: every speaker at the conference identified the consulting engineering industry as crucial for achieving successful outcomes.

The legal framework for creating the right solutions constitute a double challenge. There is a mismatch between investments in, for example, power plants and the long-term targets that have been set for CO2-emissions. There is also a mismatch between the ambitions of the EU-regulation, and the initiatives launched by the EU Commission and the individual Member States. Addressing this issue is a task for the individual European consulting engineering associations as well as for EFCA. When the EU Commission launches the consultation on its forthcoming Adaptation strategy later this year we must be ready as an industry to raise our voice and deliver input. At the conference, we received an open invitation from the Commission to influence the regulation. This is an opportunity for us to seize.

In addition to the value of the conference program, with almost 200 participants, the EFCA Conference 2017 allowed for good networking opportunities between the professionals of the European consulting engineering companies and partners, suppliers and customers of our industry.

On behalf of EFCA, the Danish Association of Consulting Engineers (FRI) and our Premium and Conference sponsors Tryg, Danica Pension, Saint-Gobain, BST Global, COWI, Orbicon and Rambøll we would like to thank all participants for their contributions to making the EFCA Conference 2017 a success.

Henrik Garver