young women engineers

Engineers become Britain’s second most-trusted profession

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Eighty-seven per cent of people trust engineers to tell the truth, according to the latest Veracity Index from Ipsos, published today.

Out of a list of 30 different professions, engineers are the second most-trusted in Great Britain, rising up from sixth place (with a score of 84 per cent) in 2021. Engineers are also one of only three professions whose trust score has improved since 2021, according to the data. 

The IET worked with the 2022 Ipsos Veracity Index – which has been tracking the latest movements in Britons’ trust in key professions since the 1980s – to include engineering for the fifth year running.

The profession, which makes up 19 per cent of the UK workforce, is trusted to tell the truth by almost nine in 10 people (87 per cent of the population), coming in at second place closely behind nurses in the number one slot (89 per cent).

Engineers have moved ahead of doctors, teachers and museum curators this year to see the profession achieve its highest-ever ranking since engineering was first included in the survey in 2018. Engineers have recorded similar levels of trust in previous years, including a score of 89 per cent in 2020.

Trust in engineers is equal across genders, with just a one percentage point difference between men and women. Despite this, only 16.5 per cent of engineers and technicians identify as women, something which the IET hopes to address through various campaigns, including its upcoming Young Woman Engineer of the Year Awards. 

Professor Bob Cryan CBE, IET president, said: “Engineers play a central role in everyday life, contributing to advancing the world around us and finding solutions to global challenges such as climate change. It’s fantastic to see that nearly nine in 10 people trust engineers – this demonstrates the huge level of professionalism and importance of engineers in the UK.

“The last couple of years have highlighted more than ever the vital role engineers play in developing technology and rapid processes, to keep our infrastructure and economy running.

“This recognition of trust by the public is a welcome boost to all those in industry, academia and our communities working together to address the shortfalls in engineer numbers faced across the UK by encouraging the next generation of talent, as engineering continues to be a vital profession across the world.”

At the bottom of the trust league are politicians (12 per cent), advertising executives (14 per cent), government ministers (16 per cent), estate agents (28 per cent) and journalists (29 per cent).

The Ipsos Veracity Index is an annual poll that has measured the trustworthiness of professions in Britain since 1983. This year’s survey was carried out over two waves of a telephone omnibus survey.

Group one included 1,005 British adults, aged 16+ who were surveyed between 19 and 26 October 2022, while group two included 1,004 British adults, aged 16+ who were surveyed between 26 October and 1 November 2022. The data was weighted to match the profile of the population. 

More information about this year’s Veracity Index is available on the Ipsos website.

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