Engineering plays a key role in achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as it utilizes the principles of science and mathematics to develop practical applications in food, water, energy, environment, sustainable cities, natural disaster resilience and other areas which are crucial to all mankind. It is also crucial to the development of new technologies enabling the 4th Industrial Revolution such as artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, robotics or quantum computing, etc. Engineering is at the heart of our modern world and will shape the future, as has been the case for millennia.
Realizing the key role of engineering for humanity and its environment, UNESCO, with support of all its member countries and more than 80 engineering organizations worldwide, decided to proclaim the 4th March every year as the World Engineering Day for Sustainable Development, to engage with governments, industries, non-governmental organizations and the public at large to address the need for engineering capacity and the quality of engineers to solve the world’s most pressing problems.
Important as engineering is, engineers have made a great value on the society and have a significant impact in improving everyone’s life with lasting benefits. Engineers are essential for resilience to climate change and to design and develop resilient infrastructure that will withstand the increasing weather related events – floods, cyclones and bush fires especially in developing countries.
Engineers are essential for sustainable economic development as they are needed to support the growth and development of essential infrastructure such as roads, dams, water supply and sanitation in both developed and developing countries.
Engineers are indispensable to technological innovation that will benefit people and the planet for greater prosperity and better quality of life and leave no one behind, especially to ensure equal access to technology for women and in rural areas.
Engineers are needed more than ever before to meet the requirements of the 4th Industrial Revolution and to address the pressing needs of sustainable development of humanity and the planet. The World Engineering Day can be used for inclusive access to engineering for women and girls, and encourage young people, especially girls, to consider engineering as a career and say “If you want to make changes for a better world – become an engineer”.