As the UK emerges from lockdown, the Royal Academy of Engineering (@RAEngNews) is offering funding of between £3,000 and £30,000 to organisations with bright ideas for creative projects that engage the public with engineers and engineering under its Ingenious Public Engagement awards scheme.

The coronavirus pandemic has shone a light on the important role engineers carry out in society, especially in times of emergency. From manufacturing ventilators and PPE to building the Nightingale hospitals, engineers have mobilised rapidly to add their expertise to the ongoing battle against the virus. For example, Ingenious awardee Professor Rebecca Shipley was on the front line working with Mercedes F1 to develop emergency breathing devices for the NHS in record time. Professor Shipley and her colleagues at University College London will use Ingenious funding to set up Tomorrow’s Home 2050: Visions of Home-based Healthcare; an innovative project that will create an immersive and interactive space showcasing the future of healthcare.

Other previously funded projects have included Migration and the Windrush Generation: New Ways of Communicating Engineering, a project that tells the story of diversity, migration, shipping and the engineering that underpinned it. The project will bring children and engineers together to explore science through transport, heavy-lifting and shipping, celebrating migration with elders from the Windrush generation.

This year, the Academy is seeking projects that can reach audiences of all ages across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. They must be imaginative in telling the story of the diversity, nature and impact of engineering and also innovative in their delivery, continuing to interactively engage the public in any area of engineering.

Ingenious panel chair Professor Anthony Finkelstein CBE FREng said:

“Engineers have been essential to the world’s ongoing battle against COVID-19, from the development of breathing apparatus to the provision of advanced imaging equipment. In these uncertain times, it is more important than ever for bold and creative engineers to come forward with innovative ways to engage and inspire the public with the hopeful message that engineering is providing practical and exciting ways to improve our lives in future, helping us to build back better.”

The Academy is especially keen to receive applications for public engagement projects that aim to reach diverse and under-represented audiences, including communities in deprived parts of the country, and projects that will engage people of different genders, ages and ethnic backgrounds. This could be in formal educational settings or informal settings such as museums, libraries, community centres and groups and with organisations such as Girl Guides and STEM clubs.

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Funding of between £3,000 and £30,000 is available through Ingenious for projects to:

  • Inspire creative public engagement with engineering projects across all areas of engineering
  • Motivate engineers to share their stories, passion and expertise with wider audiences and develop their communication and engagement skills
  • Raise awareness of the diversity, nature and impact of engineering amongst people of all ages and backgrounds
  • Provide opportunities for engineers to engage with members of the public from groups currently under-represented in engineering

Ingenious has funded over 200 projects to date, providing opportunities for approximately 7,000 engineers to take part in public engagement activities, to gain skills in communication and to help bring engineering to the very centre of society. Ingenious projects have reached over 3 million members of the public.

Applications are welcome from engineers and creative or public engagement professionals keen to explore ways to provide public engagement training and opportunities for engineers and to engage new groups of people with their work.

Applications for this funding round close at 4pm on Monday 28 September 2020.

About Ingenious

Ingenious is a grant award scheme, run by the Royal Academy of Engineering, for projects that engage the public with engineers and engineering. The scheme is supported by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

https://www.raeng.org.uk/grants-and-prizes/ingenious-grant

The Ingenious programme aims to:

  • inspire creative public engagement with engineering projects
  • motivate engineers to share their stories, passion and expertise with wider audiences and develop their communication and engagement skills
  • raise awareness of the diversity, nature and impact of engineering among people of all ages and backgrounds
  • provide opportunities for engineers to engage with members of the public from groups currently underrepresented in engineering.

Ingenious has funded over 200 projects to date, providing opportunities for approximately 7,000 engineers to take part in public engagement activities, to gain skills in communication and to help bring engineering to the very centre of society. Ingenious projects have reached over 3 million members of the public.

About the Royal Academy of Engineering

The Royal Academy of Engineering is harnessing the power of engineering to build a sustainable society and an inclusive economy that works for everyone.

In collaboration with our Fellows and partners, we’re growing talent and developing skills for the future, driving innovation and building global partnerships, and influencing policy and engaging the public.

Together we’re working to tackle the greatest challenges of our age.

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