At a solemn event held at the Royal Academy of Engineering of Spain
, Rafael del Pino, who is Chairman of Ferrovial and holds a civil engineering degree from the Technical University of Madrid, was invested a Numerary Member
of the Academy, with a lecture entitled "Twenty years of engineering in the internationalisation of Spanish business". The newly-appointed Numerary Member was welcomed by Javier Rui-Wamba Martija, a fellow civil engineer who is also Member of the Royal Academy.
In his inaugural lecture to his new Royal Academy of Engineering colleagues, Rafael del Pino noted that "in barely 20 years, Spain has become a strong investor
, ranking among the world leaders in this connection, alongside such countries as the UK, Germany and Canada. The increase in Spanish investment in other countries goes hand in hand with, and is partly the result of, the notable transformation and economic growth experienced by Spain in that period.”
Ferrovial's chairman also paid tribute to the generations of engineers who combined "extensive technical expertise with great skill in business". "These engineers played a decisive role in developing public works
in Spain and created companies that have become global leaders in their fields", he added.
During his inaugural lecture, Rafael del Pino referred to the internationalisation of infrastructure companies, noting that "we have grasped the need to further internationalise our activity, and I would go so far as to predict that, even when domestic demand recovers, companies will continue to focus on further conquering the international market.”
Del Pino highlighted the main milestones of Ferrovial's history, from its inception in 1952 to its most recent projects in Texas, which were inaugurated ahead of schedule and within budget. "The experience obtained abroad, in developing engineering and construction projects, estimating traffic, managing tolls and funding greenfield projects, is the cornerstone of the company's future development.”
He concluded by underscoring their duty as academicians to "ensure that Spain continues to produce new generations of quality engineers so that our growth potential continues to expand going forward.”
At the end of the investiture ceremony, the President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, Elías Fereres, presented Del Pino with the medal and diploma accrediting his appointment.
Said Fereres: "in its role as a think tank at the service of engineering, engineers and Spanish society, the Royal Academy of Engineering is doubly fortunate to have a professional of the calibre of Rafael del Pino. Firstly, because he is at heart a civil engineer, and secondly, because of his track-record at the helm of Ferrovial, after graduating from MIT Sloan School of Management.” Fereres also noted that "Del Pino is the best example of a new style of engineers
in which the Royal Academy is interested—engineers who combine technical knowledge with business skills.” A clear example is Ferrovial, the company founded by engineer and entrepreneur Rafael del Pino y Moreno, to whom the Academy pays tribute for his role in the modern history of Spain, and whose outstanding track record is being continued by the newly-appointed Academician, with the result that Ferrovial is a prime international example of engineering and the work of Spanish engineers.
Academician Javier Rui-Wamba referred explicitly to civil engineers, “a profession to which both Rafael and I belong, but we cannot ignore the many other branches of engineering and architecture that comprise our Royal Academy.” According to Rui-Wamba, "Engineering is a profession of nomads which is incompatible with geographic or intellectual sedentarism. In engineering, as in life, one must move and evolve. And Ferrovial is a paradigm in this respect
.” Rui-Wamba added: "Its capacity to evolve has been decisive. Darwin could explain it very well if he were with us.”
Last year, Spain's Royal Academy of Engineering voted unanimously to grant the Academiae Dilecta 2013 award to Ferrovial in recognition of its position as a Spanish engineering firm that is a global leader in transport infrastructure and services for cities. On that occasion, the Academy also praised Ferrovial's achievements in recent decades in modernising and updating Spain's most important infrastructure.
About the Royal Academy of Engineering
The mission of the Royal Academy of Engineering of Spain (RAI) is to promote quality and competency in Spanish engineering and to foster study, research, innovation, debate and the dissemination of techniques and their scientific and social basis. The Academy is a very active institution which is developing a new model of Academy focused on creating value for Spanish society by placing itself at the service of its institutions, universities and companies.