The Royal Academy of Engineering has today announced the finalists for the 2021 MacRobert Award, the most prestigious prize for UK engineering innovation.
This year’s three finalists are pioneering engineering innovations developed in the UK, with the potential to deliver significant healthcare and lifestyle benefits. From more accurate cancer treatment and personalised medicine to new smart labels in pharmaceuticals and nutrition, each of these ground-breaking developments reflect the UK’s global leadership in engineering innovation and promise to unlock widespread societal and environmental benefits.
The MacRobert Award is run by the Royal Academy of Engineering and since 1969 has recognised engineering achievements that demonstrate outstanding innovation, tangible societal benefit and proven commercial success.
This year’s three finalists are:
Each finalist team reflects the vital importance of engineering in our nation’s drive for a healthier and more sustainable society. They represent the pinnacle of UK engineering and the new frontiers of technology across fields as diverse as medical technology and the Internet of Things.
The winner of this year’s MacRobert Award will be announced in July. The winning team will receive the signature MacRobert Award gold medal and a £50,000 cash prize.
Now in its 52nd year, the MacRobert Award has an unparalleled record of recognising successful British innovations that have gone on to change the world, delivering enormous economic and societal benefits.
The first award in 1969 was made jointly for two iconic innovations: to Rolls-Royce for the Pegasus engine used in the Harrier jump jet, and to Freeman, Fox and Partners for the aerodynamic deck design of the Severn Bridge.
Several MacRobert Award winning innovations have had a major impact on healthcare and lifestyle over the years, including:
MacRobert Award winners are chosen by an expert panel of Academy Fellows, who have vast experience across engineering industry and academia.
Professor Sir Richard Friend FREng FRS, Chair of the Royal Academy of Engineering MacRobert Award judging panel, said:
"The UK is a global leader in engineering and technology, as evidenced by its proactive role in tackling the pandemic, from ventilators to vaccine production. After such a year it is no surprise to find medical engineering strongly represented across the finalists for this year’s MacRobert Award for engineering innovation. As we look to build back better for the future, the inspiring achievements of our finalists offer the potential for all of us to have more control over our health and lifestyle.
"These three companies represent the very best of engineering innovation, offering new ways to apply leading edge technologies in our daily lives. Whether using our own genetics to guide us on making healthier food choices through DnaNudge, reaping the benefits of products connected seamlessly thanks to PragmatIC’s flexible electronics or receiving more precise cancer treatment developed by Creo Medical, these developments offer huge potential advantages for the future."
The MacRobert Award
First presented in 1969, the MacRobert Award is widely regarded as the most coveted in the industry, honouring the winning organisation with a gold medal and the team members with a cash prize of £50,000. Founded by the MacRobert Trust, the award is presented and run by the Royal Academy of Engineering, with support from the Worshipful Company of Engineers.
The Royal Academy of Engineering is harnessing the power of engineering to build a sustainable society and an inclusive economy that works for everyone. In collaboration with our Fellows and partners, we’re growing talent and developing skills for the future, driving innovation and building global partnerships, and influencing policy and engaging the public. Together we’re working to tackle the greatest challenges of our age.
The MacRobert Award finalist teams:
The MacRobert Award 2021 judging panel: