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Inspiring next generation of surveyors key to addressing skills and infrastructure deficits 

RICS regional board, Northern Ireland appoints Martin Doherty as chairman 

Inspiring the next generation of chartered surveyors is essential to addressing Northern Ireland’s construction skills deficit and creating the world-class infrastructure that our economy and society needs, the newly appointed regional board chair of RICS in Northern Ireland urges today. 

Martin Doherty, a senior property professional with Belfast City Council, says that one of his key goals in office will be to promote surveying as a profession in Northern Ireland, including the opportunities it can create and the critical role it plays. 

Mr Doherty, who takes over from Ulster University lecturer Sharon McClements, says that whilst surveyors play a key role in shaping, enhancing and protecting Northern Ireland’s built environment, there currently aren’t enough of them, which has been a challenge for the industry over recent years. 

He says that inspiring the next generation is critical for the industry and the economy. He says that more talented young surveyors coming through in the industry will help Northern Ireland deal with its infrastructure deficit, its housing shortage, and its need to be more sustainable. 

Martin Doherty

“As regional chair my intention over the next year is to positively influence the direction of the RICS, whilst helping deliver positive, sustainable change in the built and natural environment. I’m particularly invested in promoting the profession, especially for the next generation of surveyors. 

“The RICS Construction and Infrastructure Monitor has shown that skills shortages continue to persist in our industry, and we hear this time and again from members anecdotally too. We also hear time and again how the skills of chartered surveyors are central to so many critical aspects of our lives in Northern Ireland including creating our infrastructure, building the homes that we need to live in, and addressing climate change. 

“To meet the future needs of communities, we need to attract and retain a larger, more diverse workforce, and we also need to upskill professionals in retrofitting solutions. RICS has a key role to play in this alongside stakeholders in education and government. We need a Northern Ireland Executive in place to help address these and other challenges. In my role as chair, I will continue to echo RICS’ calls for a government to support more apprenticeships and to work with industry to deliver training which will close the close the skills gap.” 

Martin Doherty who has 25 years’ of experience in the built environment, is programme delivery manager for Belfast City Council, with responsibility and accountability for leading and managing teams in the delivery of capital projects and programmes. Prior to his roles within the council, Martin was a partner with a chartered quantity surveying firm.  

Having sat on the RICS regional board for four years, Martin will now lead the RICS board here and represent the organisation locally in engagement with members, stakeholders and media. 

RICS, which has a remit to act in the public interest through its Royal Charter, has around 1900 members in Northern Ireland including those working across the land, property and construction industries as well as students. 

The incoming chair also officially opened the new RICS office for Northern Ireland in Belfast’s Custom House today. The newly obtained offices are part of a five-star facility in the heart of the city. 

The office space offers a dedicated space for members to meet, network and collaborate with shared meeting spaces including privacy pods, a boardroom and a number of meeting rooms.  

“With our new regional presence at Custom House and a number of events planned including the RICS NI Annual Conference in September, I’m looking forward to playing my part in what is an exciting time for RICS in Northern Ireland,” Martin adds. 

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