In partnership with the Institute of Mechanical Engineers

Engineering is a central industry in the UK economy, yet it is a sector that is consistently misunderstood by the general public, leading to a serious skills shortage. Engineering remains worryingly unattractive to women and minority groups despite decades of intervention in schools and communities. It also remains an area of study that is side lined in mainstream education, and is for the most part accessible only through extracurricular enrichment opportunities. Efforts to place engineering at the heart of education, for example in University Technical Colleges, have encountered barriers to acceptance and integration in the current education system.

As we enter the Fourth Industrial Revolution do we need to change radically the way we think about engineering education, recruitment, and retention? What might be a new and compelling narrative for the engineering sector? What risks will be involved in changing the current system?