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Royal Academy of Engineering

File:Royal Academy of Engineering Logo, green, October 2013.jpg
Motto To bring engineering to the heart of society
Formation Template:If empty
Headquarters London
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3 Royal Fellows, 1,541 Fellows
Professor Dame Ann Dowling DBE, FREng, FRS
Senior Vice President
Professor Sir William Wakeham FREng
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Formerly called
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The Royal Academy of Engineering is the UK’s national academy of engineering. The Academy consists of engineers from various engineering sectors.

The Academy was founded in June 1976 as the Fellowship of Engineering with support from Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, who became the first senior Fellow and as of 2013 remained so. The Fellowship was granted a Royal Charter in 1983 and became the Royal Academy of Engineering in 1992.[1][2][3]

The Royal Fellows of the Academy comprise Prince Philip, the Duke of Kent, and Anne, Princess Royal.[4] The Fellowship currently stands at over 1,400 engineers.[5] Up to 60 engineers are elected each year by their peers, distinguished by the title 'Fellow of The Royal Academy of Engineering' and the postnominal designation 'FREng'. Honorary and International Fellows who have made exceptional contributions to engineering are also elected.The current President of the Academy is Professor Dame Ann Dowling DBE, FREng, FRS, the first woman to hold the office. The Immediate Past President is Sir John Parker GBE FREng.

The Academy’s activities are focused on positioning engineering at the heart of society by:

  • shaping national policy as an independent adviser to, and delivery partner of, government.[6]
  • nurturing engineering education and skills[7]
  • inspiring young people to become engineers
  • recognising great engineering through prizes and awards

It is a national Academy with a global outlook and conducts a number of international activities[8] with partners across the world.

The Academy is also an instrumental player in two policy alliances set up in 2009 to provide coherent advice for engineering education and policy across the profession: Education for Engineering[9] and Engineering the Future.[10]

Carlton House Terrace and Prince Philip House

The Academy’s premises at 3-4 Carlton House Terrace are housed in a Grade I listed building overlooking St James’ Park, designed by architect John Nash and owned by the Crown Estates. The Academy shares the Terrace with two of its sister academies, the British Academy and the Royal Society as well as other institutes.

The building was renamed Prince Philip House,[11] in honour of the Senior Fellow, after renovation works were completed in 2012. Prince Philip House is also available for venue hire for meetings or events.


The Fellowship met for the first time on 11 June 1976 at Buckingham Palace where 126 of the UK’s engineers were enrolled, including turbojet inventor Air Commodore Sir Frank Whittle, structural engineer Sir Ove Arup, radar pioneer Sir George MacFarlane, bouncing bomb inventor Sir Barnes Wallis, computer scientist Sir Maurice Wilkes, and the Fellowship’s first President, nuclear engineer Lord Hinton[12]

The Fellowship's focus on championing excellence in all fields of engineering and activities began in earnest in the mid-1970s when the Distinction lecture series, now known as the Hinton lectures, was founded; the Fellowship was asked to advise the Department of Industry for the first time and the Academy became host and presenter of the MacRobert prize.[13]

In the 1980s, the Fellowship acquired its own Royal Charter, its first government grant-in-aid in addition to significant industrial funding, initiated its research programme to build bridges between academia and industry and opened its doors to International and Honorary Fellows.[14]

The Academy’s first major education initiative, Engineering Education Continuum began in 1990 and has now evolved into the BEST Programme[15] and Shape the Future and Tomorrow's Engineers.[16]

The Academy’s increasing level of influence – both in policy, research and education – was recognised when it was granted a royal title and became The Royal Academy of Engineering in 1992.[17]


The President of the Royal Academy of Engineering is the elected officer of the Royal Academy of Engineering (RAEng) who presides over meetings of the Academy’s council. The President is elected for a single term of not more than five years. Sir John Parker stepped down after three years on 15 September 2014.[18]

The Council of the Royal Academy of Engineering announced on 9 January 2014 that it had nominated Professor Dame Ann Dowling DBE, FREng, FRS as its Presidential candidate for election by Fellows at the September 2014 AGM. On election, she became the first female President.[19][20][21]

Years President
1976-1981 Christopher Hinton, Baron Hinton of Bankside OM, Kt, KBE, FREng, FRS
1981-1986 Robin Inskip, 2nd Viscount Caldecote DSC, KBE, FREng
1986-1991 Sir Denis Rooke OM, Kt, CBE, FREng, FRS,
1991-1996 Sir William Barlow Kt, FREng
1996-2001 Sir David Davies Kt, CBE, FREng, FRS
2001-2006 Alec Broers, Baron Broers Kt, FREng, FRS
2006-2011 John Browne, Baron Browne of Madingley FREng, FRS
2011-2014 Sir John Parker GBE, Kt, FREng
2014- Professor Dame Ann Dowling DBE, FREng, FRS

Sainsbury Management Fellowship

The Sainsbury Management Fellowship was established in 1987 by David Sainsbury (now Lord Sainsbury of Turville) for UK engineering students. SMF annually awards £300,000 worth of MBA (Masters of Business Administration) scholarships to engineers with educational qualifications. It grants an average of ten scholarships each year.[22]

Scholarships are made to engineers who have a track record of achievement in industry. It is desirable that candidates have qualified as a Chartered Engineer (CEng) or are making substantial progress towards it. Assessment for the scholarship includes attending an interview panel with members of Sainsbury Management Fellows and Fellows from the Royal Academy of Engineering.

On graduation, the awardees become Sainsbury Management Fellows. Currently SMF has 300 members, with 290 members who graduated from business schools in Europe and the United States and 10 who are studying for their degrees. All Fellows have undergraduate or graduate engineering degrees, as well as their MBA. Most have international experience and are multilingual. Of the business school graduates, 89% are employed in industry or services to industry (of whom 70% are based in the UK or work for UK firms), 10% are in consulting, 12% are in finance and the remaining 6% are in other occupations. Sixty Fellows own and manage SME enterprises. The average age is 37.[23]

SMF set up the Proactive Membership Committee[24] in 2008 to identify and support the nomination of candidates from a range of underrepresented areas, aiming to boost the number of women candidates, engineers from industry, and small and medium enterprises, those from emerging technologies and ethnically diverse backgrounds.[25]

The Academy’s current logo is inspired by human’s first technological advance: the Neolithic hand-axe, which was taken to be a symbol appropriate to the Academy, representative of the ever-changing relationship between humanity and technology.[26]

See also


  1. ^ "Founder Fellows". Royal Academy of Engineering. 10 June 1976. Retrieved 5 December 2012. 
  2. ^ Gordon Slemon (March 2004). "The First Fifteen Years - A brief history (1987-2002) of the Canadian Academy of Engineering" (PDF). Canadian Academy of Engineering. p. 2. Retrieved 5 December 2012. 
  3. ^ "The Royal Academy of Engineering". Parliament of the United Kingdom. 1 September 2002. Retrieved 5 December 2012. 
  4. ^ The Fellowship. Retrieved on 2013-08-13.
  5. ^ The Fellowship - List of Fellows. Retrieved on 2013-08-13.
  6. ^ Society and Government Retrieved on 2013-10-21.
  7. ^ Education Retrieved on 2013-10-22.
  8. ^ International Retrieved on 2013-10-21
  9. ^ Education for Engineering Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  10. ^ Engineering the future Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  11. ^ Central London conference and business meeting venue; offering major rooms suited to events and receptions on elegant Carlton House Terrace and St James - Prince Philip House Retrieved 2013-10-22.
  12. ^ History of The Academy - Early Days. (1976-06-11). Retrieved on 2013-08-13.
  13. ^ History of The Academy - 1976–1981: Establishing a track record. Retrieved on 2013-08-13.
  14. ^ History of The Academy - 1981–1986: Growing influence and activities. Retrieved on 2013-08-13.
  15. ^ [1] Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  16. ^ [2] Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  17. ^ History of The Academy - 1991–1996: From Fellowship to Royal Academy. (1992-07-02). Retrieved on 2013-08-13.
  18. ^ "In conversation with Sir John Parker" (PDF). Retrieved 6 September 2014. 
  19. ^ "Academy Council nominates first female President". Retrieved 6 September 2014. 
  20. ^ "Cambridge University news". Retrieved 6 September 2014. 
  21. ^ "Royal Academy of Engineering celebrates its first female President". Retrieved 16 September 2014. 
  22. ^ From Drawing Board to the Boardroom - FT Article 31 March 2008
  23. ^ SMF Website
  24. ^ [3] Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  25. ^ Council and Committees: Proactive Membership Committee. Retrieved on 2013-08-13.
  26. ^ Visual Identity Guidelines. Retrieved on 2013-08-13.

External links