Jul 10

Tomorrow’s Engineering Research Challenges

EPSRC (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council) have launched a report regarding Tomorrow’s Engineering Research Challenges.

CDT SIS PGR Rebecca Presswood was involved in one of the roundtable discussions in Jauary forming part of the consultation for the report, representing PhD students within CDT Sustainable Infrastructure Systems. The consultation also included engineering professionals, early career researchers and EDI groups.

The consultation happened in January and she was thrilled to be invited to speak at the launch event at the Royal Academy of Engineering on Thursday 7th July evening!

The event was very exciting and a real privilege to be part of. It was such a privilege to be involved in this review and to speak at the launch, and I am excited to share the report widely, as you can probably tell!

Rebecca Presswood, Infrastructure PhD researcher, CDT Sustainable Infrastructure Systems

A summary video has been published and the UKRI have written an article launching the report

The report itself is available here: Tomorrow’s Engineering Research Challenges REPORT.

It lays out some exciting and ambitious goals, and the more people who are aware of and invested in the report, the more successful its impact will be.

Key recommendations of the report include:

  • promoting inclusive engineering outcomes for all
  • strengthening mechanisms to facilitate and fund multi- and inter-disciplinary research
  • ‘re-engineering’ the discipline of engineering, bringing knowledge from other disciplines to bear to prepare young engineers to tackle future challenges
  • encouraging diverse, agile and impactful skills
  • convening and connecting with the professional engineering community to enhance impact
  • inspiring the next generation of engineers. 

    The report identifies a number of broad cross-cutting themes which engineering will play a crucial role in addressing:

    • achieving net zero and sustainability
    • faster digital design
    • greater access and use of data
    • increasing human resilience
    • understanding complex systems
    • harnessing disruptive, emerging technologies
    • underpinning tools and techniques.

The report was co-chaired by Professor Dame Helen Atkinson and Dr Peter Bonfield, and the consultation was led by Grace Belshaw and Andy Lawrence from EPSRC. Rebecca spoke to Jane Nicholson at the event, who was familiar with the Boldrewood NIL through UKCRIC.

TERC Co-Chair Professor Dame Helen Atkinson, DBE, FREng, Pro-Vice Chancellor, School of Aerospace, Transport Systems and Manufacturing, at Cranfield University said:

This report is the result of sustained engagement and listening to a diverse range of communities, work which has been inspiring and informative in equal measure.

The cross-cutting themes and technological challenges identified outline the ambition of our collective vision, in setting out how harnessing the UK’s engineering strengths and talent will deliver benefits for us all.