They’ve already started recovering the corpses of oil-poisoned dolphins, sea turtles and birds from the troubled waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Another casualty in this slowly unfolding catastrophe is the reputation of the engineering profession—and not just petroleum and oil-drilling platform engineers, who certainly have much to regret about the Deepwater Horizon explosion. The disaster affects the reputation of all engineers. Photo: AP/Wideworld What’s happening now in the Gulf is another failure for a profession already deeply afflicted with an identity crisis and which questions its role in U.S. society. Part of the problem stems from much-publicized disasters of
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.