Big projects don’t have to go wrong! That’s the message of Creating Systems that Work: Principles of engineering systems for the 21st century, published today by The Royal Academy of Engineering. The guide’s aim is to demystify the design of large integrated systems, and to give educators, students and practitioners alike six simple guiding principles that will help them to understand how large projects can be better conceived, designed and delivered.

The six principles go far beyond technology; they are summed up by one of the statements in the guide - “you can’t build an integrated system without an integrated team”. The relationships between the players are crucial and the guide counsels realism. Engineering, like politics, is the art of the possible.

John Baxter FREng, President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, said: “We can no longer afford the luxury of educating engineers purely in narrow specialisms. The UK’s future prosperity depends on engineers who, as well as being expert in their own discipline, can contribute to team efforts that break down traditional silo walls. As manufacture and detailed design increasingly is conducted outside the UK, Integrated System Design remains the place at the top of the food chain where we can excel and create the greatest added value.”

Notes for editors

  1. Creating systems that work: Principles of engineering systems for the 21st century is available from the Academy’s education department tel. 020 7766 0600
  2. 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

For more information please contact: Jane Sutton at The Royal Academy of Engineering