SOUTH AFRICA: Too much work for too few engineers

South Africa's severe shortage of engineering professionals is putting a strain on the country's infrastructure growth programme, according to research by the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) published last week, writes Bheki Mpofu in Business Day. The report supports what similar studies have indicated: the country is facing a chronic shortage of qualified and competent professionals such as engineers following a surge in investment in infrastructure development in recent years.

Interestingly, the HSRC research found that a good number of local engineers ended up in the financial and business services sectors, where they hardly used their skills, and not in infrastructure development where they were desperately needed.

"The fact that a lot of our municipalities do not have a single technician or engineer indicates that we have a very serious problem. Municipalities are supposed to be at the forefront of delivering services and infrastructure," said Joan Roodt, one of the researchers.
Full report on the Business Day site