The governance model of the SPE is based on the concept “think global, act local”. The model connects local chapters and student chapters and consolidates to regional directors. Technically, the technical sections report to the technical directors. It is a model recognized by professional societies as offering the combined benefits of proximity to members and technology-driven networking capability.
Sections/technical communities of SPE members share ideas, promote skills and develop projects related to their technical interests. Technical sections tend to be more task-oriented than discussion-oriented. They meet virtually for the most part, but are encouraged to meet in person at least once a year.
Technical Sections (TS) evolve with current and foreseeable industry trends. There are almost 20 technical sections and during my tenure as president two new sections were approved.
- The Geothermal Technical Section (GTTS) builds on the synergies between the geothermal industry and the knowledge of the oil and gas industry, especially for improved and advanced geothermal systems. GTTS is off to a great start with the organization of several virtual events, and recently, its participation in physical events such as the SPE EuropEC held last month.
- The Technical Section of Management. As the former management and information engineering discipline was split off with the creation of the Data Science and Engineering Analytics discipline, the emergence of a standalone TS allows for continued focus on the management side. The latter covers several major topics, including energy saving, strategic planning, etc.
Two other sections are being created on hydrogen and on the management of greenhouse gas emissions, in particular methane.
The technical sections can also be combined, if necessary, to offer maximum efficiency to our members. The consolidation of the Digital Energy TS and the Petroleum Data-Driven Analytics TS was proposed. A committee was tasked with evaluating options for moving forward, including the potential creation of new focused sections that would cover emerging areas such as quantum computing.
In last month’s column, I mentioned that SPE’s Board of Directors and management were undertaking a review and update of SPE’s strategic plan. It is a regular and periodic positioning guide for the Company in a context that has changed a lot over the past 4 years due to the pandemic crisis, the industry cycle and the prospects for energy transition. With the help of consultants, we conducted a number of interviews with our members that reflect different geographic and business perspectives. These are conducted either through one-on-one discussions, town hall meetings with focus groups, or smaller focus groups. Regular strategic plan updates are provided on SPE Strategic Planning.
We have also created a special discussion channel through SPE Connect, called General Discussion, to facilitate open and relevant dialogue on issues such as the strategic plan. This will avoid discussions on SPE Connect technical channels. Every two months, questions will be posted to the discussion forum to solicit member feedback on what the future of SPE should look like. Please take this opportunity to get involved and make your voice heard.
Following the strategic visioning session conducted in July, PES management plans to develop the strategy in September-October and complete the implementation/planning of actions in October-November.
As this is my last column, I would like to say that it has been an honor to be your SPE 2022 President. Although this has been a difficult time for our company, I believe that we have a strong community that is passionate by what we do which will be a driving force for the future of our industry for many years to come. We may not be fully aligned on the various issues facing the energy sector, but it is the diversity of opinions that contributes to a thriving professional society, which I am proud to belong to.
Working closely with SPE staff under the leadership of SPE CEO and Executive Vice President, Mark Rubin, has been a great pleasure. They all contribute greatly to smooth sailing on rough waters. I had the privilege of working closely with SPE 2021 Chair, Tom Blasingame, who provided critical guidance alongside SPE 2023 Chair, Med Kamal.
I look forward to an excellent 2023 Presidency by Med Kamal, with the support of the SPE Board, SPE staff and all SPE volunteers around the world. I would have liked to be able to visit many sections, student chapters and technical section meetings in person. I hope that the travel situation will return to some normality and that I could enjoy the pleasure of a positive response to such invitations. Stay safe and healthy!
As always, I welcome your feedback at [email protected]