MEMBERS OF the Institutions of Civil and Mechanical Engineers (ICE and IMechE) are to be consulted in the summer over whether or not they support the formation of a single institution.
Council last week agreed that a joint letter from the presidents of both institutions would be sent to the 150,000 ICE and IMechE members. This will set out the pros and cons of joining together and the proposed way forward, and invite comment on the plans.
But crucially the letter will also seek a mandate from members to develop the plans in more detail by asking specifically whether they support the initiative, do not support the initiative, or if they have no strong feeling either way and are happy for the decision to made by Council on their behalf.
'This is turning the bag inside out, ' said ICE president Colin Clinton. 'We are going to members and saying 'do you really want us to do this-'.' Clinton highlighted that, although details were not yet worked through, it was important that ICE members clearly understood how serious the talks were and what the result might be.
'It is very important that we agree on what we are asking members to give us a mandate for, ' said Clinton. 'If we don't make it clear that ultimately this might lead to the coming together of two institutions we will be fudging the issue.' The letter is now being finalised and will be sent to members of both institutions as soon as the ICE's current subscription ballot is completed at the end of May. Informal consultation with members in the regions will continue until then.