Creating cultures where everyone can thrive
Diverse perspectives enrich our collective performance. At the Academy, we are working
- To foster talent and diversity so that the UK has a world-leading and truly inclusive engineering workforce.
- With partners to boost the numbers and diversity of those entering engineering careers.
Our programmes and activities aim to catalyse a step change in the diversity of the workforce and the prevalence of inclusive cultures across engineering industry.
We have recently doubled our investment in making the engineering profession more diverse and inclusive. Our Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) action plan for 2020-2025 sets out our goals and objectives. Our D&I activities are overseen by the Academy’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee, made up of Fellows and representatives from the engineering community.
To meet our goals we work in partnership with our Fellows, partners, professional engineering institutions, and education institutions. We also partner with key organisations such as the Association for Black and Minority Ethnic Engineers (AFBE-UK), the Women’s Engineering Society (WES), and InterEngineering (the network for LGBTQ+ engineers) to highlight unheard voices, raise awareness of the barriers faced by minority groups, and to maximise impact.
A Fellowship fit for the future
As we look towards our 50th anniversary in 2026, it is important that our Fellowship embodies the full breadth and diversity of engineering excellence, so in July 2020 we set a goal to elect more new Fellows from groups currently underrepresented in the Fellowship through our Fit for the Future campaign.
Diversity and inclusion is one of our five core values - creating cultures in which everyone can thrive and diverse perspectives enrich our collective performance.
We recognise that as a leader we need to do more and own that responsibility even if it is challenging. Our Fellowship Fit for the Future campaign aims to change the diversity of our Fellowship, to reflect the engineering profession. We were delighted to achieve this in our first year, modelling to upcoming generations that we recognise diverse talent and that engineers from any background can reach the pinnacle of the profession. We are reviewing our nomination process for barriers and continue to reach out beyond our networks to ensure a diverse pipeline of talent.
Embedding D&I is owned and resourced at all levels of the organisation.
We are a Disability Confident Employer and members of the Business Disability Forum, using their tools and resources to support disability inclusion. We are a signatory to the BITC Race at Work charter and we partner with the Association for Black and Minority Ethnic Engineers (AFBE-UK), benefiting hugely from their expertise on our internal race awareness campaigns.
We use national and global diversity days to kick-start campaigns and workplace projects. These have led to:
- Our first menopause policy
- An inclusive communications guide for staff and suppliers
- Workplace adjustment passports
- Bereavement support
- Appointing mental health first aiders
A new programme that provides funding of up to £100,000 for innovative projects in university engineering departments that tackle the unequal outcomes experienced by students from underrepresented groups. As well as awarding grants, we are excited to be building a community of practice ensuring that the wider sector can learn from the successes and challenges of awardees as they deliver their projects. Find out more about the current awardees and future funding rounds here.
Our Graduate Engineering Engagement Programme GEEP is an award-winning programme run in partnership with engineering employers. It aims to increase the transition of engineering graduates from diverse backgrounds into engineering employment.
A new and ambitious inclusive leadership programme, to increase inclusivity within the engineering industry. The Academy’s previous research into inclusive cultures, shows that the engineering industry is not sufficiently inclusive. An organisation’s leadership has an instrumental role to play in its culture and that widespread inclusive leadership is a key part of addressing the inclusion deficit in engineering, this programme will start as pilot and scale to to maximise its impact in 2026.
Our programmes and activities are informed by evidence, research and data. We undertake research to better understand the barriers faced by underrepresented groups in engineering and the solutions required. We are shining a spotlight on diversity in the profession by gaining widespread public recognition for the issues through the Hamilton Commission.