First launched in 2018, This is Engineering is a multi-year campaign led by the Royal Academy of Engineering in partnership with EngineeringUK and major engineering organisations to encourage more young people, from all backgrounds, to consider engineering careers.
This is Engineering website
About the campaign
Engineering is an exciting, varied and rewarding career, and yet the UK has a shortage of young people applying for engineering courses and engineering jobs. One of the prime reasons for this shortage is that many people hold outdated views of what engineering is, and what engineers do.
This is Engineering challenges those misconceptions, by presenting a positive image of modern engineering. Through real young engineers it illustrates how engineering is behind many of the things they are already interested in – sport, fashion and tech for example – and that they can follow what they love into engineering, and in doing so help shape the future.
At the heart of This is Engineering are a series of short videos, each profiling a young engineer who is doing something remarkable.
Follow @ThisisEng on Twitter
Impact of the campaign to date
This is Engineering is successfully changing the perceptions of engineering for young people. A survey of GCSE and A Level students following the two years of the campaign revealed that:
Up to 25% of students recalled seeing the campaign, with two-thirds of those going on to talk about it with others, share it on social media, or explore more online
The campaign is improving knowledge about what engineers do, and raising the status of careers in engineering among young people
60% of teens would now consider a career in engineering – a significant increase on 39% of those surveyed before the launch of the campaign. The increase is even more significant among female and BAME students
Since autumn 2019, the campaign has targeted parents as well as young people, with positive results. Among those who had seen the campaign, surveying revealed:
72% of parents took action, such as visiting the This is Engineering website or discussing engineering with their children
88% of parents were likely to recommend engineering as a career
In the first two years (2018-2019) of This is Engineering:
Videos were watched over 38 million times in total
The campaign received over 1 million additional engagements on social media (including likes, retweets, and comments)
90% of video views were from 13-17 year-olds, and 95% from 13-24 year-olds
50% of the audience was female
This is Engineering day
On 6 November 2019, the Academy led the first ever This is Engineering day to raise awareness of what engineers really do and celebrate those who are shaping the world we live in. In coordination with partners and supporters who undertook activities all around the UK, news of the day reached over 14 million people through media coverage.
The day saw a significant increase in the campaign’s online presence, as a new This is Engineering Instagram channel was launched and influencers including Lewis Hamilton, Konnie Huq and Andrew Smyth shared messages supporting the day, reaching over 12 million people online.
A new engineering image library was also launched on the day, providing web editors, journalists and social media users with a diverse bank of imagery showcasing real engineers in a wide variety of roles, helping to challenge the stereotypical views of engineering found in online image searches. Over 780 images were donated to the library by more than 40 partner organisations, and to date they have been viewed over 360,000 times. More than 130 partners signed a pledge committing to use more diverse images of engineers in their materials.
This is Engineering Day 2019
The campaign initially launched in 2018, the Year of Engineering, and forms part of a of a wider programme of Academy work to address the engineering skills crisis. This includes work with engineering employers to improve diversity and inclusion, and the development of policy advice to address barriers in the education system to young people pursuing engineering careers. As part of this policy work, we developed a 10-point action plan, informed by young people, to help inspire future generations of engineers. The plan contains recommendations for schools, employers and policymakers on careers, work experience, and further education.
This is Engineering - 10 point action plan
The This is Engineering website now features profiles of 25 engineers from a wide variety of backgrounds. New waves of a social media campaign in 2020 will continue to target young people, and parents, with fresh videos and images to highlight the how a creative career in engineering can really make a difference in the world.
This is Engineering on Twitter
This is Engineering on Instragram
Initial planning is underway for a second This is Engineering Day, as part of autumn’s Tomorrow’s Engineers Week, to reach an even greater audience and encourage them to think again about engineering. To this end, the This is Engineering image library continues to be updated with an even wider range of photos showcasing the true breadth of a career in engineering.
This is Engineering has been made possible thanks to the generous support of the Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering and our corporate partners.
Founding Principal Partners
Principal University Partners
Major University Partners
To find out more about this project, or how to get involved, please email us.