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Engineering the Future Industrial Strategy Roundtable

On the 15 May the Nuclear Institute (NI) joined with 26 other representatives of professional engineering institutions and the Royal Academy of Engineering (RAE) to meet with The Rt Hon Greg Clark MP, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and Conservative spokesperson on Industrial Strategy, to discuss the Engineering Professions’ response to the Government’s green paper “Building Our Industrial Strategy”.  This report “Engineering an Economy that works for all” collates the views of 38 organisations, including the Nuclear Institute, and the opinions expressed in over 1200 individual questionnaire responses from their members; it is available here.

During a wide ranging discussion, Mr Clark made clear his appreciation for the comprehensive report and listened carefully to points raised by many of the representatives present.  In summing up the discussions Professor Dame Anne Dowling, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, noted that three of the main issues were the importance of Systems Thinking and Systems Engineering in achieving solutions that work across all sectors and for the whole of society; the need to invest in and develop appropriate engineering skills at all stages of education from primary to life long learning; and the importance of identifying and measuring the outputs required to meet society’s needs for infrastructure in order to define the necessary systems and inform investment decisions.

Mr Clark agreed that this was an exciting agenda in which the UK needed to be properly ambitious and plan on a much longer term basis, engaging with the whole of society.  He concluded that systems thinking could not have been better exemplified other than by the range of topics discussed.

Tim Chittenden
Immediate Past President
The Nuclear Institute

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