LONDON Members of the IEE and the IIE have voted to create the IET (Institution of Engineering and Technology) which will come into being in early 2006.
The IEE has 120,000 members worldwide and the IIE 40,000. Members of both institutions completed voting this week. The IEE voted 73.5 per cent in favour while members of the IIE voted 95.7 per cent in favour.
Lord Sainsbury, the Science and Innovation Minister, said, “This is excellent news. The new, multidisciplinary, international and inclusive body will be better able to serve its members' interests and be fit for purpose in 21st century.”
Professor John O'Reilly, President of the IEE, added, “This is an historic step for both institutions. Members have shown themselves ready to embrace the future and ensure that institutions that have served decades of engineers remain relevant in the 21st Century. Engineering is becoming increasingly interdisciplinary and global and it is important that institutions reflect the way in which their members operate,” he added
Lord Trefgarne, President of the IIE, said, “The engineering profession has for far too long been fragmented and undervalued. By bringing together all key members of the technical team, whatever their professional status, IET holds out the hope of creating a more coherent and representative organisation for our profession.”
Once formed, the IET will have the largest number of professionally registered engineers and engineering technicians in the UK. Members work in a range of sectors including ICT, robotics, manufacturing, power engineering, transport, contracting and building services, defence and the armed services.
The two organisations will now begin a process to create the IET, which will require approval by the Privy Council.
The IEE was founded in 1871 as the Society of Telegraph Engineers and renamed the Institution of Electrical Engineers in 1889. It accredits degree courses and post-graduate industrial training schemes and operates INSPEC, the world's leading electronics and physics database. It is also responsible for publishing the Wiring Regulations – the British Standard to which the electrical industry works. The IEE has 90 branches worldwide.
The IIE traces its history back to pioneering engineering institutions of the 1870s and is the result of a number of amalgamations through the years of bodies representing the interests of applications engineers and technicians.
In 1998 The Institution of Electrical and Electronic Incorporated Engineers (IEEIE), The Institution of Mechanical Incorporated Engineers (IMechIE) and The Institute of Engineers and Technicians (IET) combined to form the present Institution of Incorporated Engineers (IIE).
In 1999 The Institution of Executive Incorporated Engineers (IIExE) became part of IIE. In 2005 the UK's third oldest professional engineering body, The Society of Engineers (SoE) also joined with IIE.
It accredits university/college courses, apprenticeships and in-company training schemes. and has 13 UK Member Regions and 4 Overseas Centres.