This Wednesday, 23 June, is International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) 2021. Whilst of course the amazing achievements of the many women in the engineering sector are not confined to any one day of the year, it is nonetheless an opportunity to celebrate those achievements publicly. But it is also a moment for us to reflect on the continuing challenges women face in the engineering sector and for us to question what more we can all do to ensure that our sector in particular represents the broadest talent pool.
At the Society we have recently been doing some considerable reflection on our position on Diversity & Inclusion as part of our submission on progress against the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Diversity Progression Framework. This is the second time that the Academy has asked Professional Engineering Institutions (PEIs) to benchmark their progress against the Framework. The first occasion was in 2017 and resulted in a formal report of the progress across the PEIs as a whole.
The Progression Framework was updated in time for submissions for 2021; these are now in from a number of professional engineering institutions (PEIs) and professional science institutions and being analysed. The Academy is expected to release the PEI wide results later in the Summer. However, this article aims to give a summary of the Society’s position, in line with our commitment to transparency on D&I, and also to highlight the areas the Society sees as being the most important to progress.