Director of Urban Planning and Public Works, Tommie Eriksson, at Ekerö Municipality, Stockholm County
The Swedish Public Works Association, SPWA, has existed for almost 120 years. The Association was formed in 1902 and Stockholm city building officer A.O. Alrutz was the society’s first President. According to § 1 the Association seeks to promote development, training, cooperation and information, particularly concerning municipal-technical activities. In my capacity as the Association’s President I consider it important to make more people and organisations aware of the importance of municipal engineering in a modern society. Let us with respect look at the result of the work made by the Association’s members over the years and with enthusiasm look forward to the opportunities that the future brings.
SPWA’s importance as a meeting place for different professional groups is significant and provides opportunities to see work from a wide perspective. There are approximately 1,600 members in our Association. We are aiming to increase that number and being a member, you can introduce the Association for colleagues and others interested in municipal engineering.
SPWA’s organization is organized in committees representing the various fields of municipal engineering. The committees have representatives from different parts of the country, both men, women, young persons and more experienced professionals are included.
SPWA has its main income from training courses, conducted by SPWA autonomously or in liaison with other organizations. It is important that training is held at a high level with good quality. Due to the network among the members, we have the best position to offer attractive courses. The committees have a huge responsibility in this important work. As a member you can help the committees with suggestions for courses and conferences. Contact any of the committees, me or the Board. You will find contact details on the Association’s website www.sverigesstadsbyggare.se.
Managers in municipal engineering have an important role. The interaction between politics and municipal engineering requires a good leadership. It is a matter of urgency, that municipal managers meet to learn, share experiences and receive support in different situations.
Many young people are entering the municipal technology. Networking in SPWA is a good opportunity to learn from each other. SPWA works to promote exchanges in which older and younger members learn from each other. Sign up, younger or older, as mentor to the Board.
SPWA’s magazine Stadsbyggnad is an important and valued forum for municipal engineering. The association’s magazine is appreciated by our members, but also by many others interested in municipal engineering. If you have the possibility, please help us with articles, ideas or material about a project or a subject which you think will interest colleagues. Other information channels are the magazine’s website www.stadsbyggnad.org and the Association’s website www.sverigesstadsbyggare.se.
SPWA collaborates with several associations in related fields of activity. Cooperation with Sweden’s municipalities and county councils are well established.
SPWA has cooperation with the Nordic associations and is also a member of a global international organization. The municipal technology is underrepresented in projects conducted within the EU, so there is much to do to improve the situation. Training courses and study tours in conjunction with colleagues is always rewarding. In SPWA’s international networks are good prerequisites for the exchange of local technology around the world.
There are many important issues for the Association to work with. We will carry on together in our tradition-rich organization and continue to evolve into the future. SPWA is the most important meeting place for us professionals within the field of municipal engineering.