Engineering and science professional bodies benchmark performance on diversity and inclusion

February 7, 2018

For the first time, professional bodies across engineering and science have joined forces to benchmark their performance on diversity and inclusion (D&I). Twenty professional engineering institutions (PEIs) and 21 scientific bodies self-assessed their performance in eight areas of professional body activity: governance and leadership; membership and professional registration; meetings, conferences and events; education and training, accreditation and examinations; prizes, awards and grants; communications, marketing, outreach and engagement; employment; and monitoring and measuring.

Findings from the exercise show that:

  • Governance and leadership is an area of strength;
  • D&I performance is weakest in education and training, accreditation and examinations, and in prizes, awards and grants;
  • Women are better represented on boards, as chairs of board committees and in the membership of science professional bodies than PEIs;
  • Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) people are better represented on the boards of PEIs than of scientific professional bodies, although very few of the participating professional bodies across engineering and science have any BAME people in senior staff leadership positions;
  • Patterns of self-assessment are very similar across both sectors, but more data and resources are needed to continue the work of monitoring and development.

To read the full press release and report from the Royal Academy of Engineering visit

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