AFE July/August 2012 : Page 12
COVER STORY AFE'S Facilities Engineering and the International Community Global F////////////////////// Initia rom Seoul to São Paulo, and from Singapore to Dubai, facilities engineering is a global pro-fession. Not only are the world’s newest and largest buildings being constructed in what have only recently been considered “emerging” economies, but these construction projects and new facilities are truly international in scope. Facilities engineers from many The mission of the Global Initiative is s “ T d to expand AFE’s beneﬁ ts, training and in information beyond the Americas to ben beneﬁ t overseas facilities engineering and man able management with comprehensive, reliable an t and accessible facilities management res . resources, education and certiﬁ cation. ” Burj Khalifa, the tallest free-standing structure in the world at 2,716 ft (828 m). Samsung C&T Engineering & Construction Group was the prime contractor. different countries get involved in these projects from the ground up, doing everything from helping design the building for maximum safety, comfort and energy effi-ciency to operating the completed building so the design and construction teams can deliver a turnkey facility to the owners and occupants. 12 July | August 2012 ■ Facilities Engineering Journal ■ www.AFE.org
AFE’s Global Initiative
Facilities Engineering and the International Community<br /> <br /> From Seoul to São Paulo, and from Singapore to Dubai, facilities engineering is a global profession. Not only are the world’s newest and largest buildings being constructed in what have only recently been considered “emerging” economies, but these construction projects and new facilities are truly international in scope. Facilities engineers from many different countries get involved in these projects from the ground up, doing everything from helping design the building for maximum safety, comfort and energy efficiency to operating the completed building so the design and construction teams can deliver a turnkey facility to the owners and occupants.<br /> <br /> Burj Khalifa in Dubai, United Arab Emirates stands as an excellent example of the international cooperation in modern facilities engineering. Not only the tallest building, but also the tallest free-standing structure in the world, Burj Khalifa is 2,716.5 feet (828 meters) high and includes 160 occupied floors. Its 58 elevators are not only the world’s tallest, but also the fastest. The six-year project, completed in 2010, involved over 30 contracting companies and 7 million workers from over 50 different countries. On a busy day 12,000 people of more than 100 nationalities could be found working on the building.<br /> <br /> Samsung C&T Corporation’s Engineering & Construction Group, the prime contractor for the construction of Burj Khalifa, is itself a model of international activity in facilities engineering. Samsung C&T Corporation was the original company in the Samsung Group, now a global enterprise of over 60 separate companies, including the electronics division with which almost everyone is familiar. Samsung Group is now a major player in the world economy well beyond its origins in construction; in fact, it generates 13% of the Republic of Korea’s (South Korea) gross domestic product of $1.01 billion. A global presence in the engineering world, the Engineering & Construction Group of Samsung C&T Corporation has completed an impressive array of projects on many continents: the Petronas Twin Towers in Malaysia; the Taipei Financial Center in Taiwan; and the Incheon Grand Bridge in Korea, one of the longest cable-stayed bridges in the world at 13.2 miles (21.3 kilometers).<br /> <br /> AFE in the Global Community <br /> <br /> With facilities engineering being both a global and globally interconnected field, the community needs a central repository of information, interaction and new ideas. The Association for Facilities Engineering is known as the organization that “wrote the book” on facilities engineering. AFE’s Facilities Operations and Engineering Reference: The Certified Plant Engineer Reference (1999, now published by John Wiley & Sons) is the standard technical resource for the field and is even used as the textbook for training facilities engineers in the Republic of Korea. AFE education and networking programs are now helping more than 9,000 members and AFE-Certified professionals operate facilities in a more efficient, cost-eff ective and environmentally friendly manner. As such, AFE is in an ideal position to lead the profession by providing resources, service and recognition to a large international community.<br /> <br /> In 2012 AFE launched its major Global Initiative. The mission of the Global Initiative is to expand AFE’s benefits, training and information beyond the Americas to benefit overseas facilities engineering and management with comprehensive, reliable and accessible facilities management resources, education and certification. One of the key activities under the Global Initiative is to expand the outreach of AFE’s certification programs so that facilities engineers and operations and maintenance professionals will be well-prepared to maintain and manage the complex infrastructure in modern buildings like the Burj Khalifa and the Petronas Twin Towers wherever they may be.<br /> <br /> The Certified Plant Engineer® (CPE) and Certified Plant Maintenance Manager® (CPMM), two of AFE’s flagship professional development programs, are well-represented among facilities engineers, operators and maintenance leaders around the world. Fifteen percent of AFE-Certified professionals work in countries other than the United States. The Republic of Korea is especially well-represented with 250 Certified Plant Engineers. To support its Global Initiative, AFE has a strong and long-standing partnership with the Korea Institute of Plant Engineering and Construction (KIPEC) in Seoul. Every year since 1996, KIPEC has offered a training course for facilities engineers that uses AFE instructional materials and culminates in students taking the CPE Exam. Edward J. Jeong, PhD, Vice President of KIPEC believes strongly in the partnership between the two organizations, and the CPE itself plays a significant role in developing the facilities workforce in Korea.<br /> <br /> AFE’s rapidly growing LinkedIn® group also demonstrates the importance and the commitment of the association to the global community. Over 30% of the 3,500 group members are from outside the United States, representing more than two dozen countries on five continents. According to a just-released study by the Society for New Communications Research, working professionals spend 40% of their online time in peer-to-peer networking communities. By managing and maintaining the LinkedIn group, then, AFE provides a tool that facilities professionals deem essential to their daily routine. This social media platform is especially valuable for AFE’s international members in countries as diverse as Uganda, Brazil and Trinidad, who may not have access to a local network of facilities professionals with whom to share ideas and solve problems. AFE on LinkedIn can be a resource for remote workers to connect with their colleagues as well, such as the 210 facilities professionals in the U.S. Department of State who just joined AFE and are stationed in embassies and consulates in all corners of the world.<br /> <br /> Every time a new building is built or a new facilities engineer is trained or moves to a new country, facilities engineering becomes a more global enterprise. Whether it is developing the massive building projects like those undertaken by Samsung C&T Corporation Engineering & Construction Group or U.S. State Department facilities engineers working side by side with local citizens to maintain small consulates in central Africa, facilities engineers must be prepared for the global future. And that global future is a bright one. With more and more international projects reaching completion and new technologies and strategies such as sustainability pushing to the forefront, the demand for highly trained facilities engineers, operators, and maintenance professionals will continue to grow. As the profession grows, AFE will be there to serve as their source of information and technical expertise as well as their connection to colleagues anywhere in the world so they may communicate, share ideas and solve common problems. And AFE’s CPE, CPMM and CPS will continue to identify the most highly prepared facilities professionals everywhere.<br /> <br /> Reference: V. DiMauro, P. Auditore, and D. Bulmer. 2012. The Social Mind. Society for New Communications Research, Palo Alto, Calif.
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