Discussion Forum (Theme-I)

Mandatory versus non mandatory competencies - an idea

Mandatory versus non mandatory competencies - an idea

by Sally WOLKOWSKI -
Number of replies: 2

Hi everyone,

I just wondered whether the competency frameworks could be structured such that they stop just short of being mandatory as it's clear that the role of the secretariat and wider WMO is not the organisation to state that they should be mandatory, but that they define a subset of core competencies which should be expected of all people within that a role?

Sally

In reply to Sally WOLKOWSKI

Re: Mandatory versus non mandatory competencies - an idea

by Jeff Wilson -

Sally,

A couple of things that may help

The WMO technical regulations only hold two types of requirements

Mandatory and these use the word Shall. Members shall .....

Recommended practise and these use the word Should. Members should ....

Theoretically regulations written using should are expected to be changed to shall at some stage in the future.

So if the Tech Regs hold a competency framework, then already in your words they are nearly mandatory if they are a Recommended Practise. You would be expected to have a good reason to have not implemented them. All competency frameworks with the exception of the one for aeronautical met are Recommended Practises. Partly this is practical as there is no international regulator with national representation in the climate, marine, public weather services ... areas.

Congress is the body that sets / agrees the standards. As Congress only meets once every four years they have delegated authority to Executive Council who meet on an annual basis to approve changes to the tech regs that cannot wait until the next Congress. There is also an procedure to allow updating of the Tech regs between ECs and this is usually for communication codes or similar that are operationally important and timebound.

So the Secretariat do not create the technical regulations, they assist in preparing them for discussion in the technical commission expert teams and sessions and then later for EC / Cg. The Secretariat are then charged with publishing them.

In most cases, but not all the technical regulations (there are four volumes) are created by the technical commissions and following discussion and resolution presented to the WMO Executive Council for approval for inclusion into the Tech Regs. For ETR and thus the trainer competencies, EC itself was the instigator (through the EC Panel on ETR) as well as the approver.

I suggest you have a talk with Ian Lisk who is very au fait with  the Tech Regs. In the end if you are still unhappy with this situation, raise it with your PR as he is an EC Member and if you can convince him then he can raise the issue for discussion in a range of venues. In the mean time it is sometime best to just say, this is silly but I personnally cant change it right now so lets work with the current obsolete or what ever system we have to use.


Jeff Wilson

In reply to Sally WOLKOWSKI

Re: Mandatory versus non mandatory competencies - an idea

by Jeff Wilson -

Sally,

I forgot to add a few additional things.


There are a hierarchy of documents loosely called the Tech Regs. The top level are in WMO 49, Vol 1 to 4 and annexes. These are the standards and recommended practises. The publications below this are called Manuals and they also include regulatory material, they expand upon the material in WMO 49 but do not introduce any new standards or recommended practises. Below the Manuals are the Guides which are designed to assist Members implement the Standards and Practises and definitely do not introduce new regulatory material. The words Shall and Should have prescribed meanings in WMO 49 and the Manuals but normal usage elsewhere.

Now for a body like WMO (and its predecessor IMO) where surface observations have been its bread and butter for nearly 150 years you may expect instrument characteristics / performances etc to be in the tech regs and be Shall. Interestingly enough in an age where we are very concerned about surface temp as a litmus for climate change the CIMO publication setting out instrument specifications is a Guide and there are at least 3 different types of shelters for surface temperature instruments. It has been this way for more than 60 years. This still staggers me. So I can strongly relate to your frustration and to me our issues are very small in comparison to this much more fundamental question.


Jeff