Today, the Royal Academy of Engineering will host Engineering a Better World, a major conference marking the Academy’s presidency of the CAETS global network of engineering and technological sciences academies.

The event will bring together more than 400 people from over 40 countries, including leaders in engineering and international development professionals, to explore how engineering can drive progress towards the UN's Sustainable Development Goals. Together they will discuss how, by applying engineering to global challenges such as sustainable power for all and access to clean water, we can continue to improve quality of life and stimulate economic growth.

The event will include speeches and panel debates from world-leading engineers, entrepreneurs and academics and experienced international development professionals, including the President of Mauritius, Dr Ameenah Gurib-Fakim and Dr Jo Da Silva, Head and founder of Arup International Development. The event will also include a personal video address from Bill Gates about the role played by engineering in supporting international development.

The second day of the conference will build on the themes and issues discussed on the first day, but focus on the role of national engineering academies and institutions, and how they can have a genuine impact on social and economic change. A series of lectures, panel discussions and workshops will allow the global engineering community to share best practice, guidance and support.

Dr Hayaatun Sillem, Deputy CEO & Director of Strategy at Royal Academy of Engineering commented: “Engineering is vital to both social and economic improvement, and key to achieving sustainable development. From developing new, accessible medical technologies to providing clean water and sustainable power for all, engineers have a pivotal role to play in tackling the world’s greatest problems.

“The Engineering a Better World conference will bring together leading players in the engineering and international development communities to discuss how we can work collaboratively on an international basis to solve some of the world’s most pressing challenges, as set out by the UN.”

The conference is part of the Academy’s broader programme of international work to build capacity in engineering education, research and innovation in developing countries, and to share best practice in engineering capacity building for the global community to benefit from.

Information about the event programme and speakers, as well as content from the day, can be found on the Academy website:

Engineering A Better World

Notes for editors

  1. Royal Academy of Engineering. As the UK’s national academy for engineering, we bring together the most successful and talented engineers for a shared purpose: to advance and promote excellence in engineering. We provide analysis and policy support to promote the UK’s role as a great place to do business. We take a lead on engineering education and we invest in the UK’s world-class research base to underpin innovation. We work to improve public awareness and understanding of engineering. We are a national academy with a global outlook.

    We have four strategic challenges:
    - Make the UK the leading nation for engineering innovation
    - Address the engineering skills crisis
    - Position engineering at the heart of society
    - Lead the profession
  2. CAETS is an independent non-political, non-governmental international organization of engineering and technological sciences academies, one member academy per country. For more information about CAETS and the membership countries can be found on the CAETS website:

For more information please contact:

Jo Trigg or Jane Sutton at the Royal Academy of Engineering

T: 020 7766 0744
E: Jo Trigg
E: Jane Sutton