Civil engineering is a professional engineering discipline that deals with the design, construction, and maintenance of
the physical and naturally built environment, including works like bridges, rods, canals, dams and buildings. Civil engineering is the oldest engineering discipline after military engineering , and it was defined to distinguish non-military engineering from military engineering.
Civil engineering takes place on all levels: in the public sector from
municipal through to national governments, and in the private sector
from individual homeowners through to international companies.Considered as one of the oldest engineering disciplines, Civil Engineering involves planning, designing and executing structural works. The profession deals with a wide variety of engineering tasks including designing, supervision and construction activities of public works like roads, bridges, tunnels, buildings, airports, dams, water works, sewage systems, ports etc. and offers a multitude of challenging career opportunities.
A civil engineer is responsible for planning and designing a project, constructing the project to the required scale, and maintenance of the product. A civil engineer requires not only a high standard of engineering knowledge but also supervisory and administrative skills. The planning part of their work involves site investigation, feasibility studies, creating solutions to complications that may occur and the actual designing of structures. They have to work with the guidelines of the local government authority and get plans approved by the relevant authority. They may prepare cost estimates and set construction schedules. Construction work involves dealing with clients, architects, government officials, contractors and the supervision of work according to standards. Their work also involves the maintenance and repair of the project.
The major specialisations within civil engineering are structural, water resources, environmental, construction, transportation, geo-technical engineering etc. On most projects, civil engineers work in teams or in coordination with many other engineers. They can find work as a supervisor of a construction site or a managerial position or in design, research as well as teaching in government services or private concerns. They can also work as independent consultants.