Engineering practice has changed radically over the past 100 years and is now more collaborative across disciplines, more integrated with technology and more mobile.
But the profession needs to become more inclusive.
Out of all STEM professions, engineering is the least diverse. Women make up only 16% of engineering graduates. At university, women remain concentrated at the bottom of the academic hierarchy, while men still account for more than 80% of the most senior academics in Australian universities.
Men are still more likely to secure roles over women who have equal levels of experience and skills. Only 51.2% of the women who do qualify as engineers actually work in the profession.
Engineers Australia's leadership is working to close the gender gap.
Through its research, the National Committee for Diversity in STEM and National STEM Strategy, Engineers Australia has highlighted the issues and mapped a pathway to put diversity on the engineering agenda.
National STEM strategy
The primary solution to having more women in engineering is to enable more girls to study STEM from an early age. Engineers Australia's National STEM Strategy was released in April 2019, and reflects EA's role as capacity builders and facilitators in STEM education.
Engineering is Elementary program
Engineering is Elementary uses storytelling and problem-solving to introduce primary school children to how engineers solve the world's problems. The intent is that by engaging primary students as a whole through inclusive learning, more female students will also be engaged.
Future female program
The Future Female Program, launching in August 2019, will feature the best and brightest young women engineers.
Each engineer will share what they are achieving professionally and personally, providing great role models for girls between 12 and 17.
Future of diversity
EA has set an ambitious goal: women making up 30% of the engineering profession by 2029
- SOURCE: Engineers Australia: 100 Years of Progress