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2. ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY
This paper is part of a wider study addressing the level of provision of sustainable development (SD) competencies in seven engineering programmes in three Irish Higher Education Institutions. The paper explores the influence that programme chairs’ professional identity has on their views of SD and their assessment of the extent to which SD is integrated in their programmes. The data for exploring this is taken from a thematic analysis of six interviews with programme chairs which shows that their assessments of the extent to which SD is integrated in their programmes are at odds with previous findings that highlight deficiencies in the integration of SD in their programmes. In exploring these issues we came to the conclusion that their professional identity is a key issue influencing their approach to EESD. The findings suggest that programme chairs’ professional identity is influenced by their unique history and disciplinary knowledge which act as constraints to a holistic integration of SD in their programmes. This along with the strong commitment to staff autonomy in programme design and delivery poses the question as to how cultural change among engineering academics can lead to an improved integration that has a multi-disciplinary focus.
Nicalaou, I, Conlon, E., Bowe, B. (2015). Exploring Programme Chairs' Understanding of the Integration of Sustainable Development: an Issue of Professional Identity. Engineering Education for Sustainable Development Conference, Vancouver, Canada, June 2015.