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Risk, ‘psychic numbing’, and wellbeing take centre stage at Lloyd’s Register Foundation International Conference 2019

The Global Safety Podcast: The Future of Engineering

Subscribe now to The Global Safety Podcast - our series exploring how experts keep the world safe.


We need a skilled workforce of engineers to meet the challenges we’ll collectively face in the coming decades as we strive towards a net zero economy. But right now, there is a problem: we don’t have enough engineers to futureproof the planet. Recent data suggests that the UK alone is several hundred thousand engineers short, and each of the required engineers needs to be trained to the right level.  

In this episode of the Global Safety Podcast from Lloyd’s Register Foundation, Danielle George asks a panel of experts ’where have all the engineers gone’. Tim Slingsby from Lloyds Register Foundation, civil engineer and ICE STEM ambassador Virtue Igbokwuwe, and CEO of Engineering UK, Hilary Leevers discuss ways to attract and inspire our next generation of engineers.

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Episode Transcript

Dan George: Engineers can and regularly do change the world. And right now, we need engineers more than ever as we look to an uncertain future, a changing climate, a growing population and geopolitical insecurity all present their own challenges. And to solve those challenges, we need a steady flow of skilled workers. But we have a problem, and that is we don't have enough engineering. UK estimates that 124,000 engineers and technicians are required every year to meet current and future demand for core engineering roles to 2024. The energy sector alone needs to fill 400,000 jobs before 2050. 260,000 of these will be new jobs. And so, we need to attract around 65% more engineers every year. And then consider that in order to retrofit our nation's homes a further, 45,000 technicians will be needed to be trained each year to develop new fabrics and install new systems such as heat pumps. So where have all the engineers gone? And how can we turn this shortfall problem into an opportunity? After all, engineers bring ideas to life, turn dreams into reality, and make solutions to big challenges possible. They design, fix, invent and improve. And they're changing people's lives and our world for the better. And as we transition towards a net zero world, we need engineers more than ever.

And so, in today's Global Safety podcast from Lloyd's Register Foundation, I'm joined by a fantastic panel to explore how we attract new entrants to this amazing world of engineering. First of all, I'm joined by Dr. Tim Slingsby from Lloyd's Register Foundation. Tim is director of Skills and Education for the Foundation. Dr. Hilary Leavers is CEO of Engineering UK, a not-for-profit organization passionate about inspiring the next generation, working in engineering and technology. And finally, we have Virtue Igbokwuwe, Virtue is a civil engineer and an ICC STEM ambassador. And I'm hoping she'd provide us with her own insight into what skills she thinks future engineers will need. Thank you all so much for joining me today. Welcome, everyone.

Now, before we look at the ways in which young people on new entrants can be attracted to a career in engineering, I want to highlight just how important the industry is and will be increasingly so in the coming years. The Institute of Civil Engineers has been staging an exhibition entitled Time is Running Out, which focuses on the role of civil engineers can play in helping society respond to the challenges of climate change and meet our net zero targets by 2050. We spoke to Ayo Sokale. Ayo is a chartered civil engineer, TV presenter and a member of the Institute of Civil Engineers. She told us more about the exhibition and why it's so important.

Ayo: I'm a chartered civil engineer and I work at the Environment Agency as a project team manager. And what we do, the Environment Agency, is we reduce the risk of flooding to communities. We civil engineers play a massive part in reducing the risk of flooding. I mean, look at the Thames barrier. It's the infrastructure that is alleviating or reducing risk to communities. That is civil engineering infrastructure, a reservoir or a bond or an embankment or a massive tidal wall, a gate, or, you know, even locks and wires and those systems. You know, this is all civil engineering, and this is what we do with a rock stars of engineering. I saw engineering for what it is. It's a thing that can change the world around me, transform communities, change people's lives. And that kind of really captured my imagination. When you build a bridge, it connects communities. When you think about infrastructure in that way and what it does for people and society. That was a thing that captured my imagination. It just felt like, Well, what a superhero DVD. And then I learned about engineers and kind of transform the world. Like there's a bazalgette with the sewers and like, saving London from Cholera. That kind of really excites me. And I just thought, Well, I've got to follow this passion. I think the key exhibition message is basically highlight that we are facing climate change challenge. I think most people are aware of that, but it's highlighting the roles of civil engineers in that the crucial role there is in responding to the climate emergency, be it like myself and flood risk or in helping communities adapt to climate change. So it's putting that connection that everyone's aware. Climate change is happening, but then making people aware that the role that civil engineers play in that. So that's what the key thing the exhibition is trying to really convey. Time is running out to cut carbon emissions and adapt to climate change, and civil engineers are the people who can do that. And it's a career that will help anyone who wants to make a difference in this space. So let's say you're a young person and climate change is something that really concerns you as it concerns so many of us. You know, you you learn by the end of that exhibition that civil engineering is a pathway to making a difference. And whoever you are, whatever age you are by a family, it's an inspiring day and at least makes you feel that there's something you can do or there's someone out there doing nothing. So the exhibition kind to try to highlight, you know, key things. I've talked a lot about flooding. That's what I do. But it talks about the value of water, which is also really important, or how we end waste or how we keep traveling. He answers this with videos and, you know, shows other incredible people who work in my industry and what they're doing, creating smarter cities or, you know, trying to figure out how to improve energy. So it kind of showcases these really big questions that are facing us as civil engineers and kind of building the world in the context of climate change and net zero 2050. So it answers those questions and kind of through case studies and profiles of engineers like myself and many others. It showcases all the different paths and strands to this kind of major work in adapting to climate change. And you can actually watch a virtual tour online. So they have it at the ICI website and I see time is running out. So if you search that as well, that will come up and you can see the virtual tool and see some of the stuff I think everyone will enjoy. Be it that you're an avid future engineer or, you know, a family who just want to have a really fun day out.

Dan George: Now, before we take a deep dive into engineering, I want to do a quick fire question to each of you on the panel. And I'm going to start with you, Hillary. What was your own personal route into the world of engineering?

Hillary Leevers: Well, I was passionate about maths and physics at school, and I was someone who took things apart and put them back together. My first job was at proper engineering, but then I diverted to my studies, went over to psychology and neuroscience. Became a research scientist, took a long career break, had kids, went into policy and education, and then of all engineering, UK came back and I just it felt like it spoke to my core. Actually, it really pulled me back over.

Virtue Igbokwuwe: Yes. Mine's kind of very similar to Hillary in terms of I really did like maths, physics, but mainly like product design as well. To have a design brief is quite creative. So I wanted to mix all of those elements together, pull, pull from their strengths. And my physics teacher told me about severe injury and I was like, Oh, this is great. Like it's designed as mechanics. It's there's drawings. It was everything that I was looking for, and I like a subject or degree to study, so I chose to study in uni. Then I fell in love with it even more. And so now I'm currently working as a civil engineer.

Dan George: That's brilliant. Yeah, I think it's really important what you say about you, about being creative. I think some people forget how creative engineering is, don't they?

Virtue Igbokwuwe: Yeah, definitely.

Dan George: What about you, Tim? Was it maths and physics for you to know?

Tim Slingsby: I think I'm still on my journey into engineering. I've always, like Hillary said a few minutes ago, been absolutely fascinated by how things work and also pulled apart clocks and made attempts to put them back together. But ultimately I got more fascinated in how people work and I ended up being a geneticist. So did some genetic engineering as part of my studies, but then motivated more and more by actually identifying solutions to things rather than asking questions about things. I saw engineering as the route to doing that. I remember very distinctly being at the Royal College of Arts, talking in the in the School of Design, and one of their professors handing me a phone. He said, You know, this is design, this is engineering, and just the way he talked about it. So one of those eye opening moments where I thought, oh, my goodness, yes, that that is entering. So every every so often I find myself in conversations with brilliant people, brilliant engineers around the world and having another moment thinking, gosh, yes, this is engineering and it is brilliant and it can make the world better. And making the world better is why I think engineering is so important.

Dan George: That's a great start for me. Well, thank you very much. Tim, I'm going to stay with you because I want to take a look now at the current state of engineering, not just in the UK, but actually across the globe as well. But first, I want to be really clear to our listeners. Why is it so important that we have more engineers? Tim.

Tim Slingsby: Well, at the foundation we believe that we will always need more engineers to make the world a safer place. So we're coming up with a realization about some of the crises that the world is facing and some of the challenges that the world shares in engineering is a solution to many of those crises and problems. To give you an example, we all know that the world's population is expected to be in a 9 billion by 2050, but more than that, it's going to be 70% urban. That means 70% of all the people around the world are going to be living in cities like environments. So what that means is that more and more people around the world are going to need all of the assets underpinning energy generation and telecommunications and data and transportation. That in itself requires investments of trillions and trillions and trillions of dollars by 2050. And therefore, in just 20 years time or so, we need to design and construct infrastructure on an enormous scale several times what currently exists in the whole of Europe. And we need to do that whilst also adjusting and adapting to a changing climate and making sure that existing infrastructure continues to be resilient as well. And that in a rather large and misshapen nutshell, spells out the need for more engineers in the right places doing the right things.

Dan George: Is this a global problem? Do we need more engineers just in the UK or is there a shortage, you know, across the world?

Tim Slingsby: Well, to me it's a global problem, particularly where there's population growth driving that need for new critical infrastructure. And we see, you know, real peaks of population growth. Not to get too specific, but in in parts of Africa and in parts of South East Asia as well, of course.

Dan George: Which you are not doing there as well. I mean, do you do you think this is a shortage across the world, not just in the UK?

Virtue Igbokwuwe: Yeah, definitely. But I kind of want to I don't know the point of why we do need engineers, because even during the pandemic, I had a small placement with the company and most of my friends have their placement penciled by civil engineers was still needed regardless if there was a global pandemic or not. It just showed that like, regardless of what's happening, we still need the civil engineers on site to keep like our day to day lives functioning.

Dan George: We're like sort of a victim of our own success because we feel invisible. Engineers feel invisible because we do, you know, keep the roads running or the lights on or whatever as well. Yeah. Henry. George, come.

Hillary Leevers: On. Actually, that's a really interesting time during the pandemic, because all of those infrastructure roles were prioritized to continue. But also, engineers are making their own unique response to support us through the pandemic, from the development of new production of ventilators and delivering the vaccines at scale to the delivering of oxygen and actually, you know, the building of the Nightingale hospitals. And I feel recognizing that a hugely critical role that they played is really important and a story we need to keep reminding the public about.

Dan George: Absolutely. Everybody's nodding now as well. Yeah, everybody agrees. Let's look at the figures then. What what has happened to the job market and the sort of supply that pipeline of skilled workers?

Tim Slingsby: I don't know is my honest answer. However, I do think there is a lack of understanding of what skills are needed and where they're needed and how quickly they are needed. You know, for many years in the UK context, we've been talking about the need for more people to move into STEM careers, and that's all very good and may very well be true. But the lack of specifics there is not helpful because psychology is a STEM career. But do we need several hundred thousand psychologists? Probably not. Engineering and technology related pathways are really hugely important to so many aspects of the way we live and the way we interact and just better understanding specifically what skills are needed, where they are needed and how quickly they're needed will go a long way towards answering that big question. As you know, where are the people that could move onto these engineering related pathways.

Hillary Leevers: In terms of the numbers coming through in the UK, which is you'll be surprised to hear the focus of Engineering UK. We've got a pretty stable share, as it were, of the undergraduate population studying engineering and you know, the areas shift around a bit, but that's relatively stable. What we've seen over the last almost ten years since 2014 is a decline in apprenticeships and it's a real cause for concern for us. They've gone down about 9% in engineering, manufacturing and technology areas across them. Actually, they're doing very well in some areas. Again, so active and it's doing very well and actually got really quite a more diverse intake than other areas, whereas engineering, manufacturing, technology, apprenticeships are down 34% in that period. And it tends to be the younger people who are entering into them. And these are obviously linked to lower level apprenticeships. But you know, that's how you're building your future workforce. So it's a little cause for concern.

Dan George: Let's stay on that route into engineering because I guess, you know, it begins with that interest. You know, you're introduced to it somehow it's school and then maybe you want to study it as a, you know, at college or maybe university. For a long time, there hasn't been another route into the industry, you know, like apprenticeships. What do you all think is the best way then, You know, virtue you've come through what I would classes quite a traditional route, same as me, like in maths and physics and then going into university, etc.. And academic studies for sure are really important. But I guess there are other ways to progress as well, aren't there?

Virtue Igbokwuwe: Yeah, I think once joining the industry, you realize a lot of people have come into the same position in different paths. So obviously I went through sixth form, then did a four year degree to get my master's, and then I did my graduate school job. But there are things like apprenticeships as well as degree apprenticeships. So as you're studying your ISO work in which I would love other people to know that degree apprenticeships, I'd say that I'm the justice for fill in and you get to the same outcome as if you were going to take any other. And some people just went straight into working. Like you can just build up your experience straight from 16 and, you know, gather their experience that way just by working. So there's definitely loads of routes that you can take.

Dan George: Hilary In the work you're doing with the government or degree apprenticeships part of the conversation.

Hillary Leevers: Yeah, absolutely. And they are, they are gently ticking up. They're doing okay. And that's often people who may be in the workplace already having that opportunity for additional training and support through that training, through the degree apprenticeship. But I would never say there's a best route into engineering, you know, the importance of having very many different routes and valuing them and making sure people know about them is is important in principle, but particularly when we're trying to address the skills shortages and also the diversity shortages that we have. And, you know, we talk a lot about mass office. It's actually a lot of people go into engineering without both. And sometimes either of those as a very strong academic bedrock, they pick it up later. And in areas of engineering, it doesn't matter as much. A lot of the universities may ask for massive physics, but won't necessarily require them. They'll let you in without. And there are lots of courses that are really trying to open up the diversity of their intake, let in people with very different backgrounds, I reckon. Why is it that problem solving, that creativity, the design aspects and they'll bring in the technical knowledge as they need at a later stage. But actually the fact that they didn't build it up whilst at school or college isn't stopping them from progressing.

Virtue Igbokwuwe: So I just want to quickly add about what Hilary said about the you don't have to have a strong foundation, maths and physics, because that's completely true. That's actually just a small aspect of engineering. Like arts, people I think, get scared with the fact they're not that strong suit is a maths or physics and that's what you need to do to excel in engineering. But there's a wide range of subjects that could easily feed into any aspects of energy.

Dan George: And the why do we make that pool? The more people we're going to get, you know, and hopefully motivate people as well.

Tim Slingsby: Yeah, we are still speaking in, in this recent part of the conversation about a very UK perspective, but we need 10 million more engineers in parts of Africa over the next 20 years, but we need them quite quickly. So does that mean that everybody needs to go through a three year degree that's accredited by a professional engineering institution, or can we get enough of the right skills in the right place within a year?

Dan George: Hilary, I want to talk about a report that Engineering UK published last November. I think it was entitled Net Zero Workforce. Just tell me a bit more about the report. What did it set out to do and what did you find most concerning?

Hillary Leevers: Yes, so we wanted to look across all the different skills estimates that were coming out for what was needed for that net zero workforce or, you know, this number of green skills to generate a coherent estimate across all of the sectors. But giving us a bit more insight into exactly which skills and what timeline and what we found some really large numbers which you mentioned in the intro. So, you know, estimates of 260,000 new jobs by 2050 for the energy and power and decarbonization, all the infrastructure needed around that. But we can't necessarily tell how that is broken down into different areas and added into those generator for the transportation sector. So, for example, we've got estimates around electric vehicles. We need 50,000 new jobs by 2040. They're all on different timescales. So we really do need government to take a lead here and generate the insights into what skills are needed for which sector and by what time frames. And actually, you know, the data that you use from Engineering UK at the start, you know, thank you for that those were well data that pre-pandemic and their pre Brexit and their pre net zero commitments. I know the government is working on this and we're really keen to take the data as it comes through hopefully very soon and use it. I think we'll find that we really need to be looking at retraining, bringing people in at later levels and enabling people to repurpose their skills into these areas if we're going to meet the demands. This is a skills need that we all agree is absolutely fundamental and essential.

Dan George: Let's be optimistic. How do we turn this lack of engineers into an opportunity, one.

Hillary Leevers: That we know that young people are very engaged by solving problems. And so framing engineering in that context is important. They want job security and they want good salaries. And those are two things that engineering offers, but also to disrupt the misconceptions that they have about what engineering was 50 years ago. That's not what it is now. Being that really early with the messaging, I think the one last thing I would say is to increase the visibility of engineering in the curriculum. So what Virtu was saying, you know, her physics teacher happened to say, Oh, you might be interested in engineering, you should have been coming across it on a weekly basis. And it's a word that is just very much underused in our education system.

Tim Slingsby: I agree with you very much, Hilary. I was in a conversation a while ago with Hiten, the chief exec of the Royal Academy of Engineering, and she said something that stuck with me. This is in the UK context. When we talk about engineering, this is society. It's it's caused a problem. So your train is delayed today because of engineering works. And she said at the time, wouldn't it be lovely to see a campaign that said something like Your train has arrived today on time because of engineering. Your plane has landed safely because of engineering. You know, the the hidden success of engineering needs to be celebrated much more as well.

Dan George: What role do you think schools you know, the education system should play in encouraging engineers? So so think about right from primary school or even nursery actually. But you know the whole of our education system virtue.

Virtue Igbokwuwe: Letting engineers explain their day to day activities can definitely help primary school and secondary school children a lot. Just seeing them, I'm putting a face to the to the actual like job that can help lights and just even showcasing YouTube videos of people logging their lives in engineering or made videos and showcase it. And that's another way of like showing. To children or young adults what engineering entails. So there's loads more resources online now to show people.

Tim Slingsby: I think those kids, kids who are on the fence, kids who are engaging with online platforms all of the time, I think the key to engaging somebody in any subject is to make it personal to them. So, you know, you've picked up your phone, you've got that phone because of saying you've been online, you've created your own video, you know you're doing engineering there or even down to basics. As you're saying earlier on, you know, you build a Lego bridge. Well done. You've engineered something at the other end of the spectrum as well. The way that engineering is taught at, say, tertiary level, I think there are some really, really good examples around the world. Now they teach engineering as part of a project. You know, there's a problem here that we've all got to solve. What are the skills that we all have in the knowledge we can all bring in from our different areas? Our different disciplines are different walks of life in order to solve this problem. So enabling engineers to work with others is a show that engineers work with. Others in a fabric of societies is key as well. I think we've.

DAN GEORGE: Mentioned sort of problem finding creative problem solving, improving things, adapting systems, thinking, visualizing things. These are these are all what the Royal Academy of Engineering termed in their report, The Engineering Habits of Minds. How do we create engineering habits of mind? Can you create them? Or is it just something we either have or we don't have?

Tim Slingsby: I like the engineering habits of mind. I think it's good. You know, they're thinking like an engineer. What people are really identifying are very human habits. You know, test something, does it work or it didn't. So change this bit and see if that works. It's very I just think what we what it's doing is, is highlighting what's inherent in most people anyway. I think most people in day to day lives have minor problems to solve and they will take a very human approach to solving it. And when you extrapolate from, there really is quite an engineering approach or what could be defined as an engineering approach.

Dan George: Okay. I want to move on to diversity in engineering. So from a report from the Women's Engineering Society in 2022, we know that women make up six and a half percent of all engineers in the UK. How do we ensure that more women join the industry? Hilary, I'm going to start with you.

Hillary Leevers: So that 16 and a half percent has gone up six 6% in the last ten or 11 years. So there really is a good news story here. There is obviously a huge distance still to travel. And so women are at the same level as their overall workforce are about 48% in the overall workforce. If women participated in the engineering and tech workforce at the same rate as they do in the overall workforce, there would be 1.8 million more women in the workforce, which I think would probably help us out quite a bit.

Dan George:Virtue Your you're a recent graduate. What was the gender split like on your course and how do you see you know, does it look like it's improving.

Virtue Igbokwuwe: So all my course, I would say it's like 6040. So in terms of males, females, yeah, there was definitely of women in my class and I was that's something I was so surprised about. Yeah. But then if you compare across like all engineering terms with aeronautical, electrical and mechanical, so engineers normally tend to have more females than all the other disciplines. I feel like there's a lot less women in electrical engineering and then comparing university life to industry life. Now in the construction industry, that number has just gone down in terms of like 6040, I would say like and my team of 37 engineers to them off of women, including me, unlike my supervisor. So that figure took me by surprise, breaking that stigma because, yes, it's daunting knowing that you probably would be the only girl in terms of especially because split across the different team, you probably will be the only girl.

Hillary Leevers: And that's why networks can really help. So if you're in a minority in a team and just feel that actually networking with people in similar situations can really help make you feel supported. You know, organizations are so open, I think, to suggestions as what what more they can do.

Tim Slingsby: Yes, networks are part of it, but there's got to be some obligation. Well, a heavy application upon those employers to make sure that all of their employees feel welcome, valued and as though they are contributing to whatever the issue is that that particular industry is working on.

Virtue Igbokwuwe: That's a very good point. There's no point asking all these women to come into this industry. And then once we're here not catering to like needs. So like just one minor thing in terms of like normal construction site, you have to two separate toilets. I started my construction, my one of my projects and there wasn't a female toilet because obviously there's not there hasn't been a female on this site in like since the two years it's been working. And so the female toilet was turned into storage. So there's no point asking women to come work. And we're not catered to in terms of like. Everything that we should have cost us.

Tim Slingsby: I was going to say shocking, isn't it? I'm sorry you had to go through that, weren't you? But there's those very basic things as well. And then the wider structure around it. And this is this isn't just engineering as a societal thing, just providing the space and the frameworks for people to feel included, not just in the first few months of their career, the first few years of their career, but throughout their career as well.

Dan George: How do we attract those sort of harder to reach youngsters, you know, those people who maybe come from poorer backgrounds? How do we attract and inspire those? How do we make them feel included in engineering? Engineering is for them.

Hillary Leevers: Well, the first thing is to actually go to them, to find them. So, you know, we and all the organizations who work with, I think, increasingly being thoughtful about which schools and which groups of young people they work with. But actually, you also need to make sure that whatever you're doing is accessible and relevant. And the particularly if you're going to schools in very socioeconomically disadvantaged areas, they often have a lot of other challenges they're dealing with, not least struggles with the teaching staff actually being able to recruit and retain specialist teachers. So you need to also be adaptive in what your offer is. And, you know, we put a lot more resource into the schools who need more support. And at the same time, we need to make sure that the people who work on those routes and pathways and from those backgrounds, whether they were already going into engineering and tech, are still inclined to do so.

Tim Slingsby: The foundation has been working with Louise Archer at UCL Institute of Education for a little while on a program that focuses on maker spaces. You know, these places in which people come together to share resources and knowledge and learn about manufacturing technologies, digital designer, so and so forth. But we recognize this huge growing international interest in the potential of those maker spaces as sites to inspire and engage participation of these underrepresented communities in engineering. So we're looking at makerspace sites in everywhere from the UK to Nepal to the Philippines to the United States, just to identify what are the good elements of practice, to actually encourage people into the space, and then to recognize that what they're doing in the space can set them on a pathway to making their local community better, to make him wider society better, but all through making stuff and through doing engineering.

Dan George: I want to move us on to looking ahead to the requirements of future engineers and and what skills they might need because we're moving towards net zero, etc.. So looking ahead to the sort of coming decades, how do you feel about the role of engineers and engineering? Are you positive about it? Do you think we're going to meet the challenge or are you more concerned about virtue? I'll start with you.

Virtue Igbokwuwe: I'm more positive as engineers we have a role to play in terms of like the infrastructure we put out there to transport and we can actually make a big, big difference. And there's also the fact that we're willing to learn from different countries in terms of like the can see how some parts of like Western Africa is handling that climate change and how we can implement it in this country. Climate change doesn't discriminate like just because it happens in like, say, Nigeria doesn't mean it's going to happen in the UK and we can just learn from different parts of the world and they come together knowing that we have this issue and we deeply care about it. I think we I yeah, I'm optimistic we care. So once you care, that's just the first step to actually get in the right direction.

Dan George: That's a really nice way of saying it bit too. Yeah. Tim, how about you?

Tim Slingsby: Yes, I'm optimistic as well. The foundation has a program focused on South East Asia. We call it the South-East Asia Skills Enhancement Program, and it goes back down to these basic engineering skills for safety. So how in this part of the world where population growth is driving a need for new critical infrastructure, how do we make sure there's the capacity and capability to build, maintain and operate things safely? But the other thing is how do we maintain the safety of the people working on those assets as well? And engineering skills for safety can do just that, because there's a horrifying stat, it's probably a little bit out of date, but it's back in, let's say 2015, 2016 ish and a limited number of growing economies in Southeast Asia. There was something like 124,000 deaths as a result of an accident at work over a comparable period. There were a few tens of deaths in the UK. That's a frightening figure. How do we show that not only is engineering a route for keeping things safe, it's also a route to keeping people safe. Engineering has a big role to play as well.

Dan George: GEORGE Come on, Hillary, keep the trio positive.

Hillary Leevers: I will be optimistic. It is so urgent and so critical. And you saw what was achievable across the world over the pandemic. I feel a bit disappointed the you know. For me. I said, Oh, look what can be done. Look what systemic change and disruption can occur and what problem solving and ingenuity and commitment overwhelmed something. And I think the problem is we have something that it's urgent to address, but it's impacts on an incremental way. It's obvious. It's obvious that that's the problem and how we can bring that sense of urgency in in a situation like that. But but I believe it can be done. I know we have to do it, so I've got to say it's going to happen. But I would love to see a plan and I particularly love to see that STEM skills have to feel reassured that we know what we are aiming for and we've got a way to get there.

Dan George: Yeah, Brilliant. Oh, thank you all so much for joining me today. Now, just before we go, I want you all to have one message. Okay. So, Tim and Hilary, what's your message to those who are already considering a career in engineering or maybe to parents who've got children who are interested in that career path? What would your message be to them?

Hillary Leevers: Oh, please come along. I just that it's so rewarding and valuable and varied and creative and, you know, just such an impactful career.

Dan George: Brilliant. Tim.

Tim Slingsby: I think I can sum it up very simply by saying that engineering makes a better world and virtue.

Dan George: Slightly different question for you. What about to our listeners who maybe have never even considered that engineering might be for them, what would your message be?

Virtue Igbokwuwe: I would always say you never know until you try it. So I'm not pushing the idea that engineers for everybody, but you can't just buy off the possibility without giving a good try. Take the chance. You would actually be surprised that there's a sector in engineering that's just catered for you and your set of abilities.

Dan George: Three excellent messages for all listeners. I thank you very much. And that is it for today. Thank you all so much. It was a truly fascinating discussion. I could just talk to you all afternoon now. Thank you so much. Dr. Tim Slingsby from Lloyd's Register Foundation, Dr. Hilary Levers from Engineering UK and Virtue Botchwey. Thank you so much for sharing your experience and your insights as well. And of course, thanks to you for listening. Please do join us again for the next episode of the Global Safety Podcast with Lloyd's Register Foundation and remember to follow it or subscribe so that you don't miss an episode. Thank you very much.

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