At its Council meeting this afternoon Gordon Masterton OBE was appointed as the eleventh Chairman of the Construction Industry Council. Keith Clarke, CIC’s former Chairman, now becomes Deputy Chairman in accordance with CIC’s rules & byelaws.
Gordon Masterton OBE is Vice President Environment of the Jacobs Group, one of the world’s largest and most diverse providers of technical, professional, and construction services.
Prior to this appointment, Gordon was a Director of Babtie Group and became Vice President Environment when Babtie Group, became part of the Jacobs Group. During this time he worked in the Far East establishing an office in Kuala Lumpur. When he returned to the UK he headed up the Group’s work in bridges and building structures, advising on a number of major PFI building projects.
In 2001 Gordon was elected Vice-President of the Institution of Civil Engineers and became President in November 2005, serving until November 2006, encompassing the bicentenary of the birth of Brunel. In 2008 he was awarded an OBE for services to civil engineering in Scotland. He is the second Civil Engineer and Past President of ICE to Chair CIC, following Robin Wilson (1994-96).
In a speech to Council, Gordon outlined 3 key commitments for his Chairmanship of CIC:
To fully support Paul Morrell, the Chief Construction Adviser;
To be a continuing advocate for safety and support the work of the CIC Health and Safety Committee (Gordon held the post of Chairman of the CIC Health & Safety Committee for 2 years);
To be an advocate for the industry and work with CIC to represent the professionalism and quality of the construction industry in the best possible light through tough economic conditions.
Addressing the CIC Council meeting Gordon said: "In a climate where the government is wielding the metaphorical scalpel (well, let us hope it IS a scalpel and not a butcher’s knife), the voice of reason becomes even more important. And it seems increasingly likely that we are entering a period when construction could pay a heavy price in the government’s search for short term fiscal economies. When the global economy nose-dived, private sector investment in construction projects plummeted.
But the industry received significant relief from the government’s fiscal stimulus policy. Publicly funded projects were brought forward, and,although there were many redundancies, there was a safety net that saved a great many.
The safety net is about to be removed. We will be flying without a net. And that means we are in a higher risk environment, with less public expenditure and more competition across sectors for a share of a smaller cake.
But that is also an opportunity for CIC to represent the industry, with your support, as fundamentally a wealth creator, not a sink for government money to keep us all employed doing things we like to do. This will not be a time for special pleading. It will be a time for reasoned arguments that have clear impact and that, with laser-focus, present a clear argument that construction creates wealth and stimulates economic activity; and this country needs economic growth like never before."