Home Engineering Engineering and Technology Talent for Innovation and Knowledge-Based Economies: Competencies, Leadership, and a Roadmap for Implementation
Driver 3: Adapting to Highly Advanced and Complex Working Environment
There is a huge international expansion of today’s market, companies, and supply chains and their tendency to work on projects with collaborations from different countries (Mishra 2010; Parkinson 2009). In this open world of advanced technology, open trade, and multinational companies, engineering graduates are expected to have global competence (Parkinson 2009) and to be able to solve various types of problems under various constrains and in different circumstances (Kastenberg et al. 2006). Such working environments involve team members of various nationalities, cultures, and languages. (Mishra 2010; Duderstadt 2010; Klein-gardner 2011) Consequently for these fairs and projects to be successful, they require their members to have not only good technical but also soft skills, such as communication and teamwork skills (Mishra 2010).
Dealing with advanced technology and complex systems in engineering problems requires highly interdisciplinary engineering teams who have a broad mental span instead of narrow practice within traditional disciplines (Duderstadt 2010; NAE 2004; Rabl and Hillmer 2012). Engineering graduates will need to efficiently interact and collaborate with other engineers including graduate of emerging engineering disciplines such as bio and genetic engineering, medical engineering, financial engineering, nanoengineering, and ecoengineering. (Agogino 2005; NSB 2007) in addition to experts from non-engineering professions (NAE 2004; Educate to Innovate 2009).
Alongside the change in the market, engineering curricula have to change and incorporate subjects of globalization, multiplicity, world cultures and languages, communication, leadership, and ethics, environmental regulations, and sustainable approaches in design as core elements (Jamieson et al. 2009; Mishra 2010). Some well-known universities, such as Purdue, have developed their engineering programme into a "global engineering programme” with the goals of developing and improving the students’ soft skills allowing their graduates to standout in culturally diverse teams (Jamieson et al. 2009).
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