Asee peer logo

Global Competence: Its Importance For Engineers Working In A Global Environment

Download Paper |


2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Globalizing Engineering Education II: Best Practices

Tagged Topic

ASEE Global Programs

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.748.1 - 22.748.30



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Gregg M. Warnick Brigham Young University

visit author page

Gregg M. Warnick is the External Relations and Intern Coordinator for the Mechanical Engineering department in the Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology at BYU. He works directly with industry each year to recruit more than 30 funded Capstone projects and provides project management, team development, and coaching support to each of these project teams and faculty coaches. In addition, he continues to focus on increasing international project opportunities for students and faculty. His research and teaching interests include globalization, project management, leadership, ethics, and manufacturing processes. Prior to joining BYU, Gregg worked for Becton Dickinson, a Global Medical Technology Company (1995 - 2006). In this capacity he worked as a product development engineer, quality engineer, technical lead, business leader and program/project manager managing many different global projects. Gregg received his PhD in Educational Leadership and Higher Education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a Master of Technology Management degree and a B.S. in Manufacturing Engineering Technology, from Brigham Young University. Gregg also is a Professional Associate Instructor for IPS Learning and Stanford University where he teaches the IPS course Project Management Mastery and the Stanford Advanced Project Management course Managing Without Authority for numerous fortune 500 companies throughout the world. He is a Certified Manufacturing Technologist (Society of Manufacturing Engineers) and is also certified in Planning and Managing Projects (BD University); Ethical Fitness (BD University); Lean Manufacturing (BD University); High Impact Facilitation (Lore International Institute); and Project Management (Saddle Island Institute).

visit author page

Download Paper |


GLOBAL COMPETENCE: ITS IMPORTANCE FOR ENGINEERS WORKING IN A GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTWe live and work in a world that is even more interconnected and interdependent than everbefore. Engineers must now not only develop technical engineering competence, but must alsodevelop additional skills and competencies including global competence to obtain success withina global engineering environment.A study was conducted to determine whether multinational companies considered globalcompetence an important skill in mechanical engineering graduates when making hiringdecisions as well as the implications for higher education engineering programs. This paper willsummarize this exploratory study that utilized an extensive literature review to identify eightglobal competencies for engineering success within a global environment and also included asurvey instrument completed by Brigham Young University (BYU) mechanical engineeringalumni in 48 states and 17 countries.The study focused on an evaluation of standard hiring technical engineering competencies witheight global competencies identified in the literature review. The study established that standardengineering technical competencies were the most important consideration when hiringmechanical engineers, but global competence was also considered important by a majority of allsurvey respondents with six of the eight global competencies rated important by 79 to 91% ofrespondents with an ability to communicate cross-culturally the highest-rated global competence.The importance of global competence in engineers when making hiring decisions, as consideredby large companies who employed more than 10,000 employees or who had annual revenueexceeding $1 billion (US$) per year, was particularly strong. The majority of respondents (70%)indicated that companies were willing to provide training and experience to help engineersobtain success in a global engineering environment. In addition, a majority of respondents(59.9%) indicated that companies valued the efforts of higher educational engineeringinstitutions to prepare engineers for success in a global environment with only 4.8% ofrespondents indicating that they did not value the efforts of higher education engineeringinstitutions. However, only 27% of respondents agreed that colleges and universities weresuccessful in this endeavor.Globalization is not a passing phenomenon, it is here to stay. Colleges and universitiesthroughout the world need to recognize the importance of globalization and the interdependenceand interconnectedness among the world’s population. Therefore, it is important to identify,develop, and provide opportunities for international collaboration and interaction among studentsand faculty throughout the world and to focus on developing global competence as an importantoutcome for engineering graduates.

Warnick, G. M. (2011, June), Global Competence: Its Importance For Engineers Working In A Global Environment Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--18029

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2011 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015