Posted: Oct 12, 2017
‘This is Engineering’ is a major campaign by the Royal Academy of Engineering to change perceptions of the profession. It will begin with a series of high-impact videos to challenge young people’s views of engineering and highlight the role engineering plays in society.
Daniel Rossall Valentine, head of campaigns at the Royal Academy of Engineering, said that the multi-year campaign “seeks to rebrand engineering for young people and encourage them to take up careers in engineering”.
He said it would deliver a “more visible, more powerful and more unifying message than anything that has gone before, and provide content that all engineering organisations can use to attract the next generation of talent”.
After a competitive pitch process, the Royal Academy of Engineering selected Soho-based advertising agency Bandstand to run the campaign, which is being funded and co-developed with six the UK’s largest engineering firms: Airbus, BAE Systems, Babcock, GKN, National Grid and Jaguar Land Rover.
The campaign is designed to combat the engineering skills crisis. Only 30,000 of the 650,000 students completing GCSEs take both maths and physics A-levels, which are prerequisites for engineering degrees at many universities.
Peter Finegold, head of education and skills at IMechE, told Professional Engineering he was pleased at the effort to highlight that engineering is not simply a job but a way of thinking. “We look forward to seeing how this initiative complements the government’s Year of Engineering activity,” he said.
“Research by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers has shown that we need to promote engineering beyond the archetypal audience, to address skills shortages and attract potential innovators and entrepreneurs who are often lost to engineering even before they finish school,” he added.
“This means reaching out to more women and young people from diverse backgrounds as well as those who are not the standard STEM enthusiasts. We know that if we frame engineering for its social value, it becomes more attractive to these ‘engineering non-natives’.”