UK launches new £1m global engineering prize
A new £1M engineering prize to celebrate outstanding advances and innovations in engineering globally, was launched by Prime Minister David Cameron and the Opposition leaders in London yesterday.
The biennial Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, awarded by the Queen herself, will be given to an individual or small team judged as being responsible for major advancement of engineering knowledge.
Speaking at the launch event at London's Royal Academy of Engineering, Cameron said 'For too long Britain's economy has been over-reliant on consumer debt and financial services. We want to rebalance the economy so that Britain can make things again- high skilled, high value manufacturing and engineering should be a central part of our long-term future.'
The message was backed up by Opposition leader Ed Milliband, who added that the world 'faced huge global challenges in the future ranging from climate change and famine to an ageing population in the west,' which engineering could address.
The initial endowment for the £1M award has been funded by construction group Tata Steel, with BAE Systems, BG Group, BP, GlaxoSmithKline, National Grid, Shell, Siemens, Jaguar Land Rover and Sony.
Lord Browne of Madingley, chairman of the prize's Foundation said 'The prize will celebrate, on an international scale, the very best engineering in the world..It will inspire the public, especially young people, with a sense of excitement and the importance of engineering.'
Call for nominations will be from February next year, with the winner being announced in December 2012.