Engineers are the third most trusted profession from a list of 30 in Great Britain, according to the latest Veracity Index from Ipsos MORI. The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) worked with the 2020 Ipsos MORI Veracity Index, which has been tracking the latest movements in Britons’ trust in key professions since the 1980s, to include engineering for the third year running.
The profession, which makes up 19% of the UK workforce* is trusted to tell the truth by almost nine in 10 people (89% of the population), closely following nurses (93%) and doctors (91%), its highest placing to date since its inclusion in the survey in 2018.
Trust is especially high amongst Britain’s graduates (95%) which is vital because of the need for increasing numbers of qualified engineering professionals across the UK. Generation X also placed the highest level of trust amongst their generational counterparts with 94% trusting engineers to tell the truth.
Dr Peter Bannister, biomedical engineer and chair of the IET’s healthcare panel, said: “As highlighted this year, engineers play a central role in advancing the world around us and finding solutions to global challenges. The high level of public trust in engineers is a welcome boost and mirrors the level of professionalism and importance of engineers in the UK.
“The Coronavirus outbreak has presented many challenges across the world and has changed life as we know it. Engineers have played a vital role in developing technology and rapid processes to not only keep our infrastructure running but to provide healthcare solutions such as highly efficient ventilators, improve mental health by combating social isolation, develop remote diagnostics and healthcare tracking apps as well as biomedical engineering which has led to successful vaccine trials.
“It is without doubt that engineering and technological innovation has and will continue to make a huge difference. The recognition of trust by the public will hopefully be a welcome boost in the fixing the shortfalls faced by the industry 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: advertising executives (13%), politicians generally (15%), Government ministers (16%), journalists (23%) and estate agents (27%).