Career in Engineering-Then and Now

Shubhangi Pandey updated on : 28 Mar 2016

Careers in different fields of engineering have been in demand and growth of technological fields say that they are here to stay!

Engineering, Technical Fields

“Scientists dream about doing great things. Engineers do them”- James A Michener

Years have come and gone but, there are few things that have remained evergreen in the field of education. Engineering is one such hallmark area of study which has been preferred over others by generations. Considered as one of the most eminent career choices traditionally, it is the demand of the hour as well.

Role of Engineering in the Economy

Economic Impact of Engineering Research Centres (ERCs) at universities:

The US has seen the advent of ERCs at the university campuses since the year 1984, under the National Science Foundation (NSF). It was set up with an objective to give a competitive advantage to the country. The idea is to allow the industrial and academic researchers from different fields to ideate and collaborate and lead to innovations of global impact. 

The NSF made an attempt to analyse and derive the contribution that ERCs make to the economy on the whole.

On a regional level, the impact was on the small companies and start ups started by the centres. They benefitted from the knowledge output of the centre. Even the local firms would get human resource from the centre and cut down on their cost.

On the national level, the impact laid at the consumption level. The technological advancements led to contributing to consumer surplus. This was counted as the net public benefit.

However, as the analysis progressed, it was observed that the overall impact of engineering and other technological development could not be equated to national benefit wholly. The factors involved in various types of ERCs for different industries and their overall impact on the society had to be discounted. Hence, only the monetary contribution of the ERCs was not measured and instead the larger National impact was to be estimated.

It is however, much in the hands of the researchers to be guided by their intellect and conscience to make the best use of their innovations and discoveries.

Growth of technology and the need to sustain this growth calls for investment in research and development. It is in the interest of the government and the corporate to invest in engineering so that it can give returns to the economy.

Synergy of engineering streams or cross-disciplinary engineering is going to be in demand. Hence, job prospects have never been better.


As quoted by our RBI Governor, Raghuram Rajan, at IIT-Delhi’s 2015 Convocation Ceremony-

“Of course, a poor country like ours can grow for some time by putting more people to work, by moving them from low productivity agriculture to higher value added industry or services, and by giving them better tools to do their jobs. As many of you who have taken economics will recognise, we in India are usually far from the production possibility frontier, so we can grow for a long while just by catching up with the methods of industrial countries.

But more intelligent ways of working will enable us to leapfrog old methods and come more quickly to the production possibility frontier – as for example, we have done in parts of the software industry. And, of course, once you are at the frontier and using the best methods in the world, the only way to grow is to innovate and be even better than others in the world. This is what our software firms are now trying to do.”


The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering Report- Its findings

The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering released an inaugural ‘Create the Future Report’ in October 2015, which helped us look at engineering as an evergreen profession. The report was furnished basis an international survey which was conducted at global centres of Engineering, namely, the USA, Germany, Japan, Turkey, India and Brazil.

The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering is one of the most renowned awards in the area of Engineering which is recognised globally. The award recognises the exceptional innovations which have the power to create impact globally and hence, this accolade has been motivating engineers worldwide.    


Fact File:

The Create the Future Report was commissioned to mark the presentation by Her Majesty, The Queen of the 2015 QE Prize Trophy to Dr Robert Langer for his groundbreaking achievement in bridging the boundaries between engineering, chemistry and medicine. He developed a large molecular drug delivery system to treat severe diseases such as cancer.

The survey was responded by leaders and engineers from industries such as health, IT, Infrastructure, energy, etc. The survey throws light on attitudes of respondents towards Engineering, as an area of study and its employment prospects.

As per the report, Engineering topped the list of professions which were seen as essential for the economic growth, followed by business management, law, medicine and teaching. The report suggested that nations and their technological advancement depend largely on Engineering.

There are various factors which led to making Engineering as one of the top choices for a profession. Some of them being:

  • High-earning profession
  • Stimulating as it involves problem solving at various level
  •  Interesting as it gives opportunity to innovate
  • Requirement in almost every Industry

‘Create the Future Report’- QE Prize for Engineering 

  • 57% believe Engineering is critical in solving the world’s problems, particularly in the US, UK and Germany
  •  In Japan engineering is seen as a driver of innovation
  •  Interest in engineering remains higher amongst men (66% vs. 43%) but, the gap is closing fast in emerging economies such as India and Brazil
  • 71% of people think engineers’ contribution to society is undervalued, they deserve much more recognition

Engineering as the cure for many global issues

Engineering has led the technological advancement globally and in almost all the fields and industries that we can think of. The response to the survey gave the result in agreement to the above statement. From infrastructure to computer science to education to the world of entertainment, all of these have been strongly impacted by the widening scope of engineering. Technological advancements and innovations have been made possible with the help of engineers from different streams, and hence, it is also referred to as an area of study which tends to aid a candidate with problem-solving skills.

Choice between STEM and Engineering

Statistics suggest that there is a gap when it comes to making a choice between STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects and Engineering as a course as the former is chosen more often. However, in the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries, this gap is not that wide. Engineering as a course choice seems to be somewhat behind when it came to some of the developed nations, such as the UK. In a couple of the above mentioned developing nations, the younger generation, aging between 16 years to 18 years, shows a bent for engineering and its branches.

An advanced technological support could be the factor behind this choice of students in the developed countries, since, technologically advanced facilities and well funded education opportunities create a better scope for Masters and research in various fields there.

In India, 99% are interested in STEM subjects and 83% are interested in engineering as compared to the UK, where the figures stand at 89% and 43%- Create the future report

It is important to be apprised that engineering is not just all of that and has much more to it. And, in order to begin you must also know of a list of important exams which are required in order to take admission in engineering & technological institutes.

Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) 2016-

The JEE exam is divided into two levels, namely JEE Main and JEE Advanced.

JEE (Main)

This is the first round of JEE, conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) to test the candidates for admissions to the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and National Institutes of Technology (NIT), Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad and certain other institutes, for their engineering and architecture courses at the undergraduate (UG) level. The scores of the mains are also an eligibility for the JEE (Advanced).

The 4th Joint Entrance Examination (Main) - 2016 will be conducted by the JEE Apex Board for admission to Undergraduate Engineering Programmes in NITs, IIITs and other Centrally Funded Technical Institutions etc.

The detailed information bulletin containing details of examination, syllabus, eligibility criteria, important dates, etc. are available on JEE (Main) at the JEE (Main) official website-

JEE (Advanced)

JEE (Advanced) 2016 or IIT JEE 2016 will be conducted by the Seven-Zonal Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) as guided by the Joint Admission Board. This is the second stage of the entrance procedure to the IITs and the Indian School of Mines (ISM), Dhanbad, after the CBSE JEE (Mains).



Registration for JEE (Advanced) 2016

FRI, 29-04-2016,10 AM to  WED, 04-05-2016, 05 PM


Admit card available for downloading


WED, 11-05-2016, 10 AM to SUN, 22-05-2016, 09 AM


JEE (Advanced) 2016 
Paper - 1 
Paper - 2


SUN, 22-05-2016 
09:00-12:00 IST 
14:00-17:00 IST


*As per the JEE (Advanced) official website-

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