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News & opinion

17 OCT 2018

Leading and shaping society for 150 years

Rapid urbanisation, social shifts and remarkable technological developments have helped in advancing the surveying profession globally.

This year, RICS marks its 150th anniversary by celebrating the notable impact surveyors have had on the built environment and will continue to have while safeguarding the future.

Through the 150th anniversary, RICS aims to celebrate and champion the built environment professionals around the world and transform the perceptions of the industry while inspiring the next generation to join an innovative, diverse and immensely rewarding profession.

Multiple campaigns have been launched throughout the year, such as the ‘Pride in our Profession’ which highlights the contribution of chartered surveyors, and the ‘Cities for our Future’ Challenge, that is designed to find solutions to critical issues facing today’s rapidly expanding cities.

Celebrating RICS’ 150th Anniversary in the region

To commemorate this milestone, RICS MENA hosted a black-tie dinner for around 300 people, including RICS Global CEO Sean Tompkins, RICS Managing Director for EMEA Mark Walley and HM Consul General Dubai and the Northern Emirates, Andrew Jackson.

Sean Tompkins, in his welcome speech, highlighted the significance of professionalism in today’s industry, maintaining the highest standard of excellence and integrity, while shaping the world and building the future.

Reflecting back to 150 years, the organisation was born in the first industrial revolution when huge challenges persisted around rapid development and expansion of the industrialised world as infrastructure, housing and construction grew. It was built on the basis of making sure the public interest was served, and professionals were working to the highest standards. Now RICS has grown, with offices in 34 countries, and 125,000 chartered surveyors. We are currently facing the Fourth Industrial Revolution as a profession, and it is really important we seize the next industrial revolution by setting standards for Automation, PropTech and Data.

Sean Tompkins

HM Consul General Dubai and the Northern Emirates, Andrew Jackson also delivered an opening address where he stressed on the importance of the work RICS is doing to safeguard the future by highlighting the challenges the world is currently facing.

Sean Tompkins also participated in this year’s Cityscape Global Conference, the largest real estate investment and development event in the region, and discussed ‘The Fourth Industrial Revolution: people, place and practices’ to an audience of more than 150 people.

He emphasised the significance of technology and how it can provide us with the insight needed to resolve the global issues. Sean further discussed the importance of the human touch: judgement, innovation and emotional intelligence, and how all these lead to the ultimate reward: happiness – creating an environment where people want to be and making a positive difference to everyday people’s lives.

In addition, he hosted an insightful roundtable alongside Mark Walley on ‘Accelerating investment into green assets’. In accordance with the UN, by 2050 the global population will reach 10 billion, and two-thirds of the people will be living in cities, resulting in unprecedented pressure on cities. Highlighting the significance of the challenges faced by urbanisation, Sean and Mark looked at several options the built environment professionals could assist and encourage the greater evolution of market investment in green assets.

At Cityscape, RICS and the Dubai Land Department (DLD) signed a memorandum of understanding agreement which aims to increase public and investor confidence of foreign direct investments through the promotion and implementation of international standards. This will result in suitable unified regulations established for all parties in the real estate sector.

The surveying profession has made a significant contribution to society and the global economy, with up to 70% of the world’s wealth tied in land and real estate, it is clear why the built environment is a critical component of economic development and helps support stability, sustainable investment and growth around the globe.