A Report from Germany (WCNDT 2016, Part II)

Throughout my career, I’ve learned that one of the greatest bonds that any effective community can have is that of a shared, common experience. That experience doesn’t necessarily have to be some earth-shattering event. It can be as simple as an evening sharing experiences and information, or a special t-shirt commemorating a project brought to fruition by all. The events that we host and attend as NDT professionals form a common experience that allows us to improve our work and achieve our goals. The 19th World Conference on Non-Destructive Testing (WCNDT) in Munich, Germany provided such an event for the global NDT community. With that, I’d like to share some observations about our experience.

Throughout the WCNDT, we received warm receptions from our sister societies and other global partners. We had valuable meetings with the Pan-American Federation for Nondestructive Testing (PANNDT) in which we discussed ways to strengthen our working relationships and achieve common goals as a united coalition. Additionally, I was chosen to serve as the PANNDT representative to the Program Committee of the International Committee for Non-Destructive Testing. I am grateful for the opportunity and faith of my colleagues to hold this position representing both the Federation and ASNT. We also held meetings with the Asia Pacific Federation for Non Destructive Testing, where we are now a more engaged member, and the European Federation, where we previously had little involvement, to establish platforms for future interaction and cooperation.

As these conferences grow, so do opportunities to build relationships. Over the course of the event, ASNT staff and officers engaged with representatives from nearly 20 societies with whom we previously had no established contact—Kazakhstan, Croatia, and the Netherlands, to name a few. We also received interest from many of these societies in attending and participating in our 75th Annual Conference.

The atmosphere buzzed with excitement and ideas about the next wave of NDT outreach. Among those ideas was partnership with a number of sister societies to create an international publication highlighting NDT, with content geared toward the general public and related industries to generate awareness about the field and its career opportunities.

This year, we reached out to the international community by bidding to host the 2024 WCNDT. ASNT’s staff and Executive Committee put forth exceptional efforts to communicate our strengths as potential hosts and forge relationships in the international community. However, when the votes were counted, AAENDE, the Argentinian Society, earned the bid to host. While we were disappointed in the result, we take solace knowing that the world learned more about ASNT and that we put forth a strong attempt. We extend congratulations to the Argentinian Society and look forward to working with them in the coming years.

The WCNDT also provided opportunities to meet face-to-face with global partners. Several senior staff met with representatives from our international examination centers and organizations currently offering ASNT exams to explain our new computer-based examination platform and begin crafting agreements with these partners. The reception was extremely positive and supportive, and we continue to bring these negotiations to fruition.

Finally, on behalf of ASNT, I would like to thank DGZfP, the German Society, for showing great hospitality and hosting a memorable and productive WCNDT that will set a standard for future events.

As the conference came to a close it was apparent to the officers and staff that we are now entering a new era of cooperation and leadership, becoming engaged in the global NDT community. You will get to participate in this exciting dynamic at our 75th Annual Conference in Long Beach, California. This is an exciting time for ASNT that will grow and benefit from our shared experiences together.

As always, I welcome your thoughts and ideas for how ASNT can best serve the global NDT community. Please feel free to e-mail, call, or visit us here at the International Service Center.


Dr. Arny Bereson
Executive Director
The American Society for Nondestructive Testing