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Engineering And Services

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

ASEE Multimedia Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.493.1 - 8.493.9

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Paper Authors

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George Bugliarello

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2793

Engineering and Services

George Bugliarello University Professor and Chancellor Polytechnic University


The goal of this paper is to show the role that engineering and engineering schools can play in the service sector, identify some of the major challenges and present the experience of Polytechnic University's involvement in the areas of finance and supply chains, merchandising and retail. The service sector is very large and in an advanced economy like the United States constitutes the largest portion of the Gross National Product. Services are ever more dependent on technology and are being revolutionized by it. However, engineering schools have focused to a much lesser extent on services than on manufacturing, and virtually not at all on the areas of retail and finance that dominate the service sector. The very large role and scope of technology in services present major engineering challenges, ranging from systems architecture to a focus on the customer that is unprecedented in engineering curricula. Graduate curricula in financial engineering and in supply chain and retail, as well as targeted undergraduate internship programs in the retail industry at Polytechnic University exemplify a response to these challenges.


The service sector is very broad, as shown by the activities classified under it in the U.S. Industry and Trade Outlook1 (Fig. 1). In advanced economies, the sector represents the largest segment of their Gross Domestic National Product. In the United States, unlike the manufacturing sector, it has a positive balance of payment, with exports more than double the imports (Fig. 2).

Services are ever more dependent on technology and are being revolutionized by it. From algorithms, to automation, physical/mechanical systems, information systems, and telecommunications, technology is pervasive in virtually all aspects of services, with far- reaching impacts transforming not only the efficiency, but also the content and process of business. Technology has become essential to the survival of many players in the service field, from the very large to the very small.

An example of the importance of technology in services is the field of finance. Financial markets have been growing at an exponential rate. Trillions of dollars flow between countries and the leading financial markets are supported by a robust information infrastructure. New financial Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Bugliarello, G. (2003, June), Engineering And Services Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee.

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