Industry Minister, the Rt Hon Alun Michael MP, will join Lord Browne of Madingley – BP Chief Executive and the nominated next President of The Royal Academy of Engineering – and Academy Senior Vice President Wendy Hall at London’s Science Museum on Monday 28 November 2005 to launch a campaign to promote engineering and technology to young people.

Created by the Academy, Shape the Future is supported by industrial launch partners BP, Airbus, Kodak, Tyco Electronics and Bosch, along with more than 35 other organisations including the DTI, the DfES, the Office of Science and Technology, the CBI, the Royal Society and the professional engineering institutions. The campaign is designed to raise awareness of engineering and technology as a stimulating career option and an essential and exciting part of modern Britain. It will do this by bringing coherence to the many – often disparate – initiatives already in existence.

Shape the Future will start young people on a journey, making connections between the issues they face and the solutions engineering and technology can provide. And, to help them on their way, it will signpost opportunities for them to do one more thing – such as joining a Young Engineers club at their school or another similar initiative, participating in a classroom discussion or even just logging onto a website for more information.

Lord Browne will talk about the pivotal role of engineering in transforming ideas and scientific breakthroughs into practical reality with particular reference to the key challenges facing the world - including energy and the protection of the environment.

Picking up on this theme, Professor Wendy Hall will explain how Shape the Future plans to engage young people on themes of importance to them. “Enormous sums of money have been spent over the years to attract more young people into engineering and technology yet the research shows that more needs to be done. We must be more effective, more coordinated and more relevant in our efforts to inspire the next generation and communicate to them the excitement and rewards of a career in engineering”.

Shape the Future is about making connections, creating leverage and bringing coherence to the business of promoting engineering and technology,” says Professor Hall. “Above all, it’s about enabling young people to take one more step down the road to discovering how they can help shape the future.”

Notes for editors

  1. Shape the Future launches at the Wellcome Wing of the Science Museum (Exhibition Road Entrance), South Kensington, London SW7 2DD, at 6.30pm on Monday 28 November 2005. Journalists are welcome to attend by arrangement with the Academy. Speeches – from Rt Hon Alun Michael MP, Minister for Industry and the Regions, Lord Browne and Academy Senior Vice President Wendy Hall – will be at about 7.15pm.
  2. The campaign has six launch partners (BP, Airbus, Kodak, Bosch, Tyco Electronics and the ERA Foundation) along with more than 35 supporting organisations, including the DTI, OST, DfES, the CBI, the professional engineering institutions, the Royal Society, the etb, the Science Council, SETNET, the Institute of Physics, the Royal Society of Chemistry, the BA, WISE and BBC Radio 4. The target audience for the campaign is young people, especially (but not solely) those aged 10-14 years old, as well as their influencers.
  1. 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

Tom McLaughlan at The Royal Academy of Engineering