Refugee engineers who want to work in the UK
In general, there is no restriction on the right to practice as an engineer in the UK. There are some areas of work, usually safety related, that are reserved by statute, regulation or industry standards to licensed or otherwise approved persons. You can find out more about these areas on the Engineering Council website.
The Engineering Council has further details around mobility of engineers and the right to practice in the UK. Please follow this link for further information: https://www.engc.org.uk/refugees
Support for at-risk academics
Cara (the Council for At-Risk Academics), a non-government organisation, provides urgently-needed help to academics in immediate danger, those forced into exile, and many who choose to work on in their home countries despite serious risks. An increasing number of UK universities are expanding their activities with CARA, please see website of individual universities to see their latest announcements.
For further information, please visit their website: https://www.cara.ngo/what-we-do/
The Royal Academy of Engineering will be supporting a new programme of Fellowships for researchers at risk, which will be led by The British Academy in partnership with the Council for At-Risk Academics (Cara) and other national academies. The first priority for the scheme will be researchers based in Ukraine. Any enquiries about the scheme at this stage should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org and further information about the scheme can be found via the following link: www.thebritishacademy.ac.uk/funding/researchers-at-risk-fellowships-pre-announcement/
Additional refugee support projects and resources
Wellbeing in the context of mass displacement
As part of the Frontiers of Development programme, the UK national Academies hosted a symposium bringing together practitioners and researchers in Kigali, Rwanda in 2018 to discuss wellbeing in the context of mass displacement. Details of the symposium can be found here.
Following the symposium, an insights report was produced reflecting the discussions of the participants.
Sustainable homes enabling long term empowerment of refugees (SHELTERs)
The SHELTERs project, which won a follow-on grant through the Academy’s Frontiers programme, tested a shelter prototype called Makazi in four different countries (Jordan, Kenya, Zimbabwe, and South Africa) as a much-improved alternative to the inadequate shelters that over 90% of refugees end up having to call home. The project used participatory design and interdisciplinary research and sought to collect data on as-built life cycle costs, environmental impacts, comfort and social suitability.
Global engineering capability review case study – Water provision in Jordan
As part of the Engineering X programme, the global engineering capability review examined the current state of water provision in Jordan, one of the driest countries in the world. The assessment took into account Jordan’s large refugee population – estimated at 2.9 million - which further compounds the water scarcity challenge, and makes recommendations for reducing the strain, to the benefit of refugees and the wider population of Jordan. The case study can be read here: http://reports.raeng.org.uk/global-engineering-capability-review/jordan-case-study/
Building a community of practice on urban refugee issues for a better and more inclusive urban governance
Frontiers champion Akino Tahir from the Resilience Development Initiative was awarded funding from the Academy for a project that builds a community of practice on urban refugee issues for a better and more inclusive urban governance, working across East Asia and the Pacific.
The Academy’s support for Ukraine
In addition to supporting the delivery of the Researchers at Risk Fellowships programme, The Royal Academy of Engineering has signed a joint statement by EuroCASE, The European Council of Academies of Applied Sciences, Technologies and Engineering, and CAETS, the International Council of Academies of Engineering and Technology, in support of the people of Ukraine, the Academy of Technological Sciences of Ukraine, academic freedom and the autonomy of science, research and innovation.
The Academy has no active programmes or projects with Russian involvement.
Professor Sir Jim McDonald FREng FRSE, the Academy’s President, says:
“Our thoughts and sympathies are with anyone affected by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which has impacted so many lives, including displacing many academics from their home country. This is particularly concerning to the international research and innovation community as there is already a very large volume of displaced academics as a result of crises in Afghanistan, Syria and elsewhere.
“As the UK’s National Academy for engineering and technology, we will be playing a role in supporting those affected in our community through the new researchers at risk programme. We are grateful to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for providing funding to enable this partnership, as well as to others – in the UK and internationally - supporting at risk academics. Through collaborative action we hope to protect our fellow engineers and the vital research and innovation they undertake to shape our lives for the better, and will continue to work with partners across the engineering community to lend our support.”