Papers of BAS. Humanities and Social Sciences

Vol. 5, 2018, No. 2

Professional associations of Balkan engineers

until the First World War

Alexandre Kostov

Abstract. The first stage of professional organizing of engineers in Balkan countries developed during the last two decades of the 19th century, when national associations were formed, largely based on the accumulated experience in Western countries. These organizations, in which civil engineers were predominant, upheld the interests of their members. Such associations were important for regulating engineering activities and raising the prestige of the profession. They were distinctly national in character and acted in the interest of local specialists against the competition coming from their foreign colleagues. A gradual differentiation took place within this professional group. According to the specific interests of separate sub-groups within the engineer community, various forms of separation occurred within, and outside, the framework of the associations - for instance, the separation of architects, mining engineers, electrical engineers, etc. The formation of national associations of engineers in the Balkans marked the end of the first stage of the professionalization of engineering in this region.

Keywords: engineers, engineering profession, professional associations, Balkans