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New National Engineering Policy Centre to enhance government access to engineering expertise

Published: 31/01/2019

The Royal Academy of Engineering hosted professional engineering institutions and senior policy makers on Monday 28 January for an inaugural reception for the newly established National Engineering Policy Centre.

The Centre aims to enhance the influence of the engineering profession in government and deliver increased impact from evidence-based policy. Led by the Royal Academy of Engineering, it brings together 38 organisations representing the profession to ensure that engineering expertise is applied to the issues that matter, the profession has a unified voice on shared challenges, and policy makers have easy access to the best of UK engineering expertise, for the benefit of society.

The event brought together the CEOs of many of the professional engineering institutions to discuss how existing relationships between policy makers and engineers can be strengthened.

The National Engineering Policy Centre builds on previous policy work in which engineering organisations have collaborated to give advice to government on cross-cutting challenges such as education provision, the industrial strategy, and the impact of Brexit on engineering-based business and research.

Professor Dame Ann Dowling OM DBE FREng FRS, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, said:

“The UK government has a range of complex societal challenges to address where engineering plays a vital role, such as the need to improve industrial productivity, and to recognise and respond to the potential risks and rewards from disruptive new technologies. Engineers are highly skilled problem solvers with wide experience of addressing such complex issues, so the National Engineering Policy Centre has an important role to play in ensuring that engineering expertise is fully brought to bear on these national challenges.”

Bernadette Kelly, Department for Transport Permanent Secretary, who spoke at the event, said:

“Engineering is at the forefront of tackling some of the biggest challenges we face, and the National Engineering Policy Centre promises to be an important step in ensuring the industry continues to thrive.

“2018 saw industry and Government work together more closely than ever to put engineering firmly in the spotlight for the Year of Engineering, making an impact and reaching young people in a way that wouldn’t have been possible without the partnerships that underpinned the campaign. It’s encouraging to see that same spirit of collaboration at the heart of this new policy centre, which will be vital as Government and industry continue to work together to support the profession.”