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The importance of engineering in building a sustainable future

Learning and Development Team

 Sustainable engineering requires an interdisciplinary approach in all aspects of engineering,
Sustainable engineering requires an interdisciplinary approach in all aspects of engineering,

In a year when strength and resilience have been tested to the extreme, engineers and businesses have shown that outstanding results can be achieved if they work together.

It is critical, however, that this new-found spirit of unity is harnessed for the long term, seeking to find solutions to some of society’s critical issues and a circular economy that has scope for all.

Dr Helen Meese CEng MIMechE explains: “When engineers are given the opportunity to develop sustainable solutions to global challenges, the results are outstanding, and yet too often engineers are excluded from the vital conversations where decisions are made.” 

Sustainable engineering principles, when considered at an early stage, can make a huge impact on the society, but also save time, money and future proof businesses’ value chain by minimising the threats and maximising the opportunities of this new changing world. The key is finding a balance between the three dimensions of sustainability: the economic, the social and the environmental. How do you integrate these three dimensions without trading them off?

UNESCO defines sustainable engineering as the process of using resources in a way that does not compromise the environment or deplete what is available for future generations. Sustainable engineering requires an interdisciplinary approach in all aspects of engineering, and it should not be designated as a sole responsibility of environmental engineering. All engineering fields should incorporate sustainability into their practice in order to improve the quality of life for all.

“Sustainable design is no longer simply focused on reduce, recycle and re-use or repurpose. Today, sustainable design is about adding value, designing products that bring societal benefits and solving environmental challenges that are also viable for businesses to implement. Engineers must have the mindset to develop innovative solutions” Dr Meese clarifies.

Want to know more? Join Angela Hobbs and Dr Helen Meese for the Engineering a sustainable future webinar (watch the recording) and subsequent training course Implementing sustainable engineering, from February 2021, where they will share examples of engineering achievements and the stories behind the partnerships and collaborations that are creating sustainable impacts on a global scale, as well as their experiences of what can happen when business and engineering converge.

During the training course, Helen and Angela will also explore ground-breaking methodologies and how to implement them to solve problems and create innovative strategies across diverse industries and challenges.

Learn more

Engineering a sustainable future
Free webinar - Watch the recording

Implementing sustainable engineering
Virtual course - Running from February 2021
Launch promotion: Bring a colleague for free
Find out more

Meet the trainers

  • Helen Meese_sqr

    Dr Helen Meese

    Helen is a chartered mechanical engineer with over 20 years' experience in academia and industry and is passionate about the contribution that her fellow engineers bring to our economy for the long-term future of society. She helps create resilient businesses with compelling products that will change people's lives.
  • Angela Hobbs_sqr

    Angela Hobbs

    Angela completed her MSc in Sustainable Business in 2009 and is committed to the essential need for sustainability to be embedded at the core of every business, from the micro to the macro. She supports dynamic start-ups and entrepreneurs to develop sustainable innovations and bring them to market.

For more information, please contact our Learning and Development Team at training@imeche.org or on + 44 (0)20 7304 6907.

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