The Engineering the future alliance holds a fringe meeting at the Liberal Democrat party conference in Liverpool this evening (20 September) with the Social Market Foundation, looking at the changing nature of the UK economy and what should replace financial services in driving economic growth.

The speakers will address a range of subjects:

- As the country emerges from recession, financial services are set to make a reduced contribution to our national income and employment. With rapidly rising skill-levels in emerging economies, international competition for the industries of the future is intensifying. How can the UK position itself to compete?

- Engineering will be a key element in the resurgence of export-led growth that the UK will need in order to rebalance its economy.

- In the UK, low carbon technology, national infrastructure and biomedical engineering are areas where skills and knowledge are crucial in underpinning growth and prosperity. To ensure that engineering in the UK can compete globally in new technologies and innovation, policy needs to ensure the right conditions for UK engineering to flourish. But it must also pick a careful path between a discredited laissez-faire approach and a return to attempting to pick winners from Whitehall.

Speakers include:

Jane Atkinson FREng, Vice President, SembCorp Utilities

Lord Shipley

Steve Coulter, London School of Economics

Kate Bellingham, STEM Ambassador

Notes for editors

  1. An industrial policy for the 21st Century: engineering growth in Britain, the Engineering the future/Social Market Foundation fringe meeting, takes place at 6.30pm at Jury’s Inn, Liverpool on 20 September.
  2. Engineering the future is an alliance of professional engineering institutions and organisations that between them represent 450,000 professional engineers in the UK. Our vision for engineering identifies the key priorities for a thriving UK economy based on engineering innovation, building on our national strengths and the challenges of the 21st century.
  3. Founded in 1976, The Royal Academy of Engineering promotes the engineering and technological welfare of the country. Our fellowship – comprising the UK’s most eminent engineers – provides the leadership and expertise for our activities, which focus on the relationships between engineering, technology, and the quality of life. As a national academy, we provide independent and impartial advice to Government; work to secure the next generation of engineers; and provide a voice for Britain’s engineering community.

For more information please contact

Jane Sutton at The Royal Academy of Engineering
Tel. 020 7766 0636; email:  Jane Sutton