WASHINGTON — The American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) adopted an aggressive new strategic plan this week that will support the industry’s critical role in addressing climate change, transportation safety, sustainable energy, and other priorities in the built environment. The plan puts greater emphasis on research to drive thought leadership and proactive advocacy to assist policymakers and the industry to develop innovative solutions to these challenges.

“Implementing this plan will be critical for ACEC to assert itself as the preeminent thought leader in the built environment in order to confront issues that strike directly at the ability of our member firms to serve their clients and address the most pressing societal challenges facing the nation,” said Linda Bauer Darr, president, ACEC.

ACEC is in the midst of a transformation under Darr’s leadership, including greater focus on advocacy, communications, and political engagement. The ACEC/PAC continues to be among the largest PACs of any group advocating in the built environment, and recent investments in key political, advocacy, and communications positions will enable the council to expand its reach to new audiences and new opportunities to engage at all levels of policy.

The new strategic plan will empower ACEC to forcefully address critical issues facing the engineering industry, such as the shortage of engineers to meet emerging challenges, promoting diversity within the industry, and fostering innovative technologies and design solutions. The plan will also enable the council to pursue an aggressive research effort to drive thought leadership, influence policy, and shape perception.

“This plan is truly a strategic document in every sense of the word,” said Greg Kelly, former CEO of WSP USA and the chair of the ACEC Strategic Planning Committee. “Our industry is changing, attracting new professionals from diverse backgrounds. This plan empowers ACEC to bring them into the fold and be a stronger advocate about their essential value to society.”

“As engineers, we design the world around us,” said Mitch Simpler, chair, ACEC. “Every day we tackle new challenges and employ new technologies to improve our world. To accurately capture the dynamic nature of our work, ACEC needed a new strategy that was bold and audacious. I am happy to say we accomplished that goal.”

For more information, visit www.acec.org.