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22 November 2011
The Vice-Chancellor, Dr David Grant, has welcomed the establishment of a new international engineering prize which will be awarded in the UK.
The Queen Elizabeth Engineering Prize has been launched to honour exceptional advances in engineering. The £1m prize will be awarded biannually to an individual or team of up to three people, of any nationality, directly responsible for advancing the positive application of engineering knowledge. The day-to-day running of the Prize will be handled by the Royal Academy of Engineering, of which Dr Grant is a Vice-President.
The Prize will recognise the unique nature of engineering, its diversity, creativity and impact and will celebrate those individuals around the world whose work benefits and advances society. The search for prizewinners will also provide the opportunity to refresh and share the story of engineering with the widest possible audience, especially young people, creating new understanding and interest.
Dr Grant said: "The entire engineering community is delighted that the Queen Elizabeth Engineering Prize will give important recognition to our profession. This international award will showcase the very best innovation and achievements from around the world. The award will highlight the crucial role of engineers who develop solutions to a diverse range of environmental, social, health and economic challenges. I believe the Prize will create real visibility and enthusiasm in Wales and the UK for engineering as a career. The Royal Academy of Engineering aims to inspire people to see engineering as a rewarding profession and the new Prize will strongly reinforce our work.
"My own career commenced as an engineer helping to design and develop power stations. When I look at current and future challenges for energy supply and efficient energy use I recognise the crucial global importance of innovative power engineering. The huge technical challenges will bring exciting career opportunities for a new generation of engineering students. The UK is a world-leader in many engineering disciplines. International companies such as Airbus and Rolls-Royce rely heavily upon UK-based engineering skills. The world-wide automobile industry has its leading edge in the UK. F1 engineering is a good example. In other engineering disciplines, just look at the number of major international civil engineering projects led from the UK. Chemical engineering, medical engineering, materials engineering and a wealth of other disciplines have leadership in the UK and represent opportunities to seek Queen Elizabeth Engineering Prize-winners now or in the future.
"This is an exciting time to be an engineer or to aspire towards an engineering career. Universities in Wales have substantial strengths in a number of engineering disciplines. The two best Civil Engineering schools in the UK are in Cardiff University and Swansea University, and although we can argue who is best in many other engineering disciplines, it is important to recognise that Wales has significant strength overall, and provides an acclaimed and exciting environment for practicing engineers and for aspiring engineering students."
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