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All members when applying for admission to the Institution sign a declaration that they will be bound by the provisions of the Charter and Bye-Laws and by the Rules of Conduct. For the majority, the latter simply strengthen the duty that they in any case owe to themselves as professional engineers. For some members in their day to day work, however, the Rules call for the observance of long-standing conventions, ignorance or disregard of which places the professional reputation of a member at risk
as well as reflecting adversely upon the Institution itself.
Members will be familiar with the current activities of the Committee of Inquiry in to the Engineering Profession set up in July 1977 by the Secretary of State for Industry. The terms of reference on the Committee appeared in The Structural Engineer August 1977 (page 329) and brief details of its Chairman, Sir Monty Finniston and the 17 other members appointed by the Government were published in the March l978 issue (page 68).
Last month we expressed satisfaction that the decision in Anns‘ case continued to attract discussion because it revealed a serious concern amongst our members about what was in the best interests of the public and also because it helped considerably towards an understanding of what were the responsibilities of the engineer in his various roles. It has been suggested by some that there may be a need for new legislation; in this respect we have had a most interesting letter from Mr. N. Thomas in South Africa. He writes: I have read with great interest two letters from Messrs. Akroyd and Ellis regarding the Anns’ case and potential responsibilities.