Contemporary Professional Issues in Engineering

10:00am - 11:00am
To be conducted via Zoom

Engineering is the driver of technology advancement as the application of science and math with innovation to improve human life. Despite the risks and unknowns associated with these innovations, engineering improves human life and impacts society in many ways and at different levels. However, the influence between engineering and society is reciprocal where public decisions also influence engineering and technology advancement and acceptance. In fact, engineering is intertwined with humans and societal daily details, and the eco system around us, that any engineering project is now considered a social experiment.


This makes engineering a critical profession to humanity where in exchange for professional autonomy and self-governance, public health and welfare are highly regarded and protected, even before the interest of engineers themselves, in an implicit social contract characterized by an engineering code of ethics. Engineering ethics is a framework to protect the public interests and guide the professional behavior while educating engineers through discussion of evolving professional issues and enabling them to protect the profession. Engineering ethics help in generating awareness for engineers which sensitizes them against potential professional issues before they confront them.


This seminar will provide a comprehensive understanding of the context of engineering practice and related professional responsibility, as well as the depth of involvement between technology and society. Examples of contemporary professional issues will be presented from different dimensions of the profession with some explanation of engineers’ roles and responsibilities as well as their limitations in handling these issues.

Event Format
Speakers / Performers:
Prof. Nael Barakat
The University of Texas at Tyler

Dr. Barakat is a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and a registered professional engineer in Ontario, Canada. Dr. Barakat’s expertise and interests include Mechatronics, Control, Robotics, Energy Harvesting, Nanotechnology, and Engineering Education. He is also a certified Program Evaluator (PEV) for ABET. He has over 80 peer reviewed publications and numerous training workshops around the globe aiming at improving engineering education. Dr. Barakat holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from McMaster University, Ontario, and a Masters Degree from Concordia University, Canada. He is also the recipient of multiple awards including the ASME Edwin F. Church Medal (2020), ASME McDonald Mentoring Award (2014), ASME Dedicated Service Award (2011), and GVSU Distinguished Early-Career Award (2010). Dr. Barakat is active with related professional organizations and is currently serving on the executive boards of the ASME Engineering Management Division and Technology & Society Division. He also served as the past chair of the Engineering Ethics Division at the American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE) as well as in multiple leadership positions with ASME. 


Dr. Barakat’s research interest includes the areas of: Mechatronics, Robotics, Dynamic Systems and Control, Energy Harvesting, as well as Engineering Leadership, Ethics, Professionalism, and Engineering Education. Currently he is working with a research group on energy harvesting devices implemented in different applications. Dr. Barakat is also working on parallel on Engineering education and leadership topics as well as sustainability and societal impact of technology.

Recommended For
Faculty and staff
PG students
UG students
School of Engineering
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