CAETS is the International Council of Academies of Engineering and Technological Sciences, Inc. It consists of those national academies of engineering and technological sciences which have satisfied an agreed set of criteria for membership. It was established in 1978 and was incorporated as a charitable non-profit corporation in the District of Columbia (US) in 2000. Its Articles of Incorporation, By-laws and Operating Procedures set down its objectives and governance arrangements. Its membership and achievements are set down in the CAETS publication The First 25 Years 1978-2003.
The mission of CAETS is to foster effective engineering and technological progress for the benefit of societies of all countries. Specifically, CAETS provides the mechanism through which the engineering and applied science academies of the world work together on internationally important issues in ways that enable each academy to draw on the total global experience and expertise of all member academies in addressing issues at the national level; and which ensure that the best technological and engineering expertise is made available to, and used to best advantage by, the key global intergovernmental institutions for the benefit of all the peoples of the world.
The vision of CAETS is of a world in which national and international decision-making on economic, social, and environmental issues is properly informed on relevant scientific, technological and engineering considerations and in which the peoples of all countries benefit to the full from the capabilities of science, technology and engineering.
Engagement with the United Nations specialized agencies and related international organizations
Mission: Develop and implement an ongoing advisory/consultative role, with appropriate CAETS recognition, with the relevant scientific/technological organs of the United Nations(UN) System.
The UN agencies/activities in need of informed, objective advice on scientific, technological and engineering matters include: UN Environment Programme (UNEP); UN Development Programme (UNDP); UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD); UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO); Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO); and World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
Member States and Territories of the UN, through their national delegations to sessions of these bodies have the opportunity for input and advice developed through their own domestic consultative arrangements, including that on scientific, technological and engineering issues from their own national academies. The envisaged role of CAETS over the next few years is to reinforce and complement the role of its member academies and provide consolidated input at the highest levels of the UN System by:
(i) Seeking Observer/Consultative status with key UN Agencies and Programmes with CAETS representation at the regular sessions of their governing bodies;
(ii) Encouraging and assisting CAETS member academies to be involved in the preparation of their national briefs and composition of national delegations to the governing sessions of these bodies;
(iii) Preparing a brief digest of major initiatives by CAETS and its member academies for input to the UN System and use by CAETS representatives in governing body sessions;
(iv) Inviting key relevant UN System Agencies and Programmes to be represented at CAETS Convocations; and
(v) Maintaining working relations on an equal basis with international, non-governmental engineering and scientific organizations, including the World Federation of Engineering Organisations (WFEO),Inter Academy Council (IAC), and the International Council for Science (ICSU), to facilitate cooperation and coordination in their input to UN System activities on engineering, technology, and scientific matters.
Immediate goals: Over the next two years, CAETS will:
• identify and establish initial working contacts with at least two key UN System agencies;
• arrange CAETS representation, by invitation, at one or more UN System governing body sessions;
• provide all relevant UN System agencies with an introduction to CAETS and its activities;
• establish working relations with WFEO, IAC, ICSU and other relevant non-governmental bodies in respect of CAETS linkages with the UN.
Fostering and strengthening national academies of engineering and technological sciences
Mission: Increase the number of academies to ensure that CAETS is a fully global organization
Representatives of CAETS member academies need to be more proactive and contact appropriate engineering bodies and academies in other countries. CAETS should increase the number of member academies, especially from developing countries. We should encourage the creation of new academies of engineering in countries where none exists. In those countries where it is unlikely that separate engineering academies will be established, we should consider special arrangements with a view to enabling engineering subgroups of Academies of Science to be active in CAETS.
For many academies, which achieve their major income from personal membership, the dues to CAETS may be an important obstacle to active membership. CAETS should therefore maintain a dues structure which facilitates their membership.
Immediate goals: Over the next two years CAETS will:
• Commence implementation of specific strategies to increase its membership by 50% by 2010, without altering its criteria for membership.
• Develop a list of possible candidate academies from Asia, Africa, the Middle East, South America and countries which were part of the former USSR based on member academy proactive contact with engineering bodies in these regions.
Convocations, symposia and reports - Support for member academy initiatives
Mission: Join forces with member academies in order to better address global problems.
Themes for the biennial Convocations reflect, to a significant extent, the host academy's view of its current national engineering and technological issue(s), and hosts of other year annual meetings schedule them to be in conjunction with a meeting of general interest to CAETS member academies. Also member academies of CAETS differ from one and other in financial resources and national and international impact and outreach. With a view to increasing the benefit of such CAETS activities, cooperation among member academies is encouraged, possibly including co-organization or co-hosting of meetings and collaboration on publications. A series of global technological foresights could provide useful input to the UN system, possibly in cooperation with Euro-CASE and similar regional organizations as well as with other international scientific and technological organizations with similar objectives. Issues for priority consideration by CAETS include:
• New Materials and Technologies
• Water management and production
• Sustainable energy management, including the hydrogen economy
• Environment and Sustainable Growth
Immediate goals: Preparation of a long term plan for a global technology foresight
: Conduct of a successful Seventeenth Convocation in Japan in 2007.
Addressing issues of common concern of the member academies at annual Council meetings and supporting workshops.
Mission: Help member academies deal more effectively with their own national issues and academy operational issues through organized presentations and discussions at annual Council meetings.
It has been shown that there are a number of issues of common concern among member academies, for example engineering education, which merit the attention of members of the Board of Directors with a view to organizing a portion of an annual meeting for discussion, possibly followed by a workshop, to assist participating member academies better deal with such issues in their own countries.
Immediate Goals: Members of the Board of Directors will lead Council discussions on topics of common concern to benefit those member academies interested in the subject.