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Role of Engineers in Society

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The Status of Engineers in Society Since the mid 1800s the government has debated the perennial question 'what is the status of engineers in society?' Even as recently as 5 years ago an new report was commissioned by the government to ask the very same question as almost their fellow MPs asked almost 150 years ago. The question itself is problematic as the very definition of an engineer is still hotly debated. It must be understood however that engineers vitally contribute to global challenges; and their hard work and innovation directly powers the success of the Great British and European Markets. In general the public do neither appreciate or understand the vital contribution that engineers make towards the development of society. ...read more.


This approach is seen by many as a heavy handed and silly decision as the same result of inter-institution cooperation could be achieved by creating an engineering council of 38 members, one to represent each institution. Typically when asked to picture an engineer, most people instantly imagine a white male. This preconception is generally correct. Only 1 in 7 professional engineers are female despite the fact that out of all the people taking higher education courses 4 in 7 are female. Along with this statistic the same report shows that there are a very small number of ethnic minorities as a percentile of the population become engineers. These racial and gender inequalities leaves the engineering society seeming harder to get into for those who are not white and male. ...read more.


As proposed above I also believe that an engineering council should be formed to deal with general problems facing engineering and to act as a force to affect important government decisions. In addition I believe that high flying female engineers and engineers of different ethnic backgrounds need to be put into the public spotlight to entice young adults into engineering. Finally I feel that the industry desperately needs to instigate a rigid hierarchy of engineers to differentiate between mechanics, technicians, graduates, post graduates, doctors and chartered engineers; applicable to all people in the industry. Appendix Professional Engineer Magazine Jan 2008 --> June 2008 Innovation Universities and Skills Committee Inquiry into Engineering Public Attitudes and Perceptions of Engineering and Engineers. ETB & Royal Academy of Engineering. 2007 Patterns of Higher Education Institutions in the UK. Universities UK. 2007 ...read more.

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