Canadian Consulting Engineer

Another new name for ACEC proposed

June 1, 2009
By Canadian Consulting Engineer

At its upcoming annual general meeting to be held June 27 in Whistler, B.C., the Association of Canadian Engineerin...

At its upcoming annual general meeting to be held June 27 in Whistler, B.C., the Association of Canadian Engineering Companies (ACEC) will ask its members whether they want to change the name of the organization again.

Since at least the 1950s, the association has been known as the Association of Consulting Engineers of Canada (ACEC).  However, a few years ago, some people in the industry felt that the term “consultant” carried  negative connotations. Also the association felt that it needed to emphasize its role as representing companies rather than individual engineers. Because of those and other reasons, the name was changed in 2007 to Association of Canadian Engineering Companies, but the same acronym in English was used.

Since 2007 some of the provincial associations of consulting engineers began the process of changing their names and adopting the association of “companies” type of name. In New Brunswick, for example, the name was formally changed.  Others were not so happy to go along.

The brakes went on last November when the ACEC Board of Directors decided to do more consultations. According to a statement by Jeff Morrison, ACEC President: “The Board took this action recognizing that some member firms felt that the association’s name change that occurred in 2007 was done in too hasty a manner without proper consultation, and as a result, some dissatisfaction with the current name had been expressed.”


Now, after consulting widely with the members, territorial and provincial associations, ACEC’s board is recommending a new name: “The Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – Canada,” or “ACEC-Canada.”

In French, the name would be changed from “L’Association des firmes d’ingénierie du Canada to l’Association des firmes d’ingénieurs-conseils – Canada, or AFIC – Canada.

ACEC says that based on their consultations, the new proposed name would have the following attributes:

– The ACEC acronym would be retained.

– Members wanted to include the concept of “consulting engineers” in the name to truly reflect who the association represents.

– Members wanted to retain the concept of “companies” to make clear that the association represents the business interests of the industry.

-There was a greater likelihood that “Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – province”  will be adopted by a greater number of provincial and territorial associations.

Jeff Morrison is inviting any further comments from ACEC members before the name change is brought before the annual meeting on June 27.




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