Celebrating Women in Engineering - how would you like to see the sector evolve?

26 Jun 2019

Yesterday we asked our women engineers how they think their industry will evolve, but does this match the changes they feel are needed?

Today we asked: How would you like to see the sector evolve?

Susan Kizito, Senior Project Manager

Increased investment into innovative technology production.”

Utkarsha Somalwar, Assistant Project Manager

“I would like to see Australia create and implement out of the box solutions to become competitive in the market rather than exporting business overseas. I would like to also see more females in senior leadership positions within the sector, driving the change.”


Oriel Webster, Senior Project Manager

Somewhere I think we have lost sight of the importance to 'grow our own', mentor the next generation.  Nurture them, so they are motivated to be the next problem solvers.  I am concerned by the lack of problem-solvers, people that can be trusted to provide a turnkey solution.  We are witnessing a talent shortage, potentially because the skills and knowledge people are gaining from formal institutions is not teaching them to be motivated problem-solvers in their sector and many organisations, or rather the people in them, don’t want to spend the time and money investing in people, they want them off-the-shelf with a minimum of five years' experience.”

Joanne Cunningham, General Manager - Project Management

“Tough question – I guess 'diversity' is in fashion and for good reason. It would be great to see real equal opportunity for girls and for people from overseas.”

Natalie Weiershausen, Project Manager

This would come as no surprise to anyone who knows me, but I want to see the civil engineering industry become even greener than it is today. I mean this literally and figuratively.  Not only can we be designing grey infrastructure that has a positive effect on the environment and our community, we can use and encourage more natural techniques that help us achieve our initial objectives with some added benefits.  Interestingly enough, many of these practices are more cost effective in the long-run and often short-term too.  It’s our job as engineers and consultants to help educate clients, the community and ourselves about this.”

Maria Petropoulou, Senior Engineer

“I would like to see more young people joining the industry, both male and female – there is a great gap in not only technically qualified staff but in various construction related trades which is made greater every year as the older generation of the workforce retires.

In regard to the actual design work – current contract procurement methods allow very little time for design development, with the engineers having a reactionary role and very tight time schedules. This is a negative of our times, so in an ideal world I would have liked to see more time allocated to the planning and design development of projects to look for innovative solutions and outside-the-box thinking rather than reacting to situations.”


Michelle Mabbitt, Senior Engineering Technician

“The construction industry as a whole needs to be responsible for its impact on the environment.  The continued innovation of companies and researchers need to keep working to create construction products which are reusable, recyclable, can be upcycled and limit carbon footprint. I am hoping that, as the diversity of people opting to take up Engineering increases, it will have a positive effect on the way engineering careers are seen for future generations.  This in itself will help the engineering sector develop and evolve with fresh ideas.”

Kerstin Hucknall, Project Planner

“I would like to see more young, equally female or male, people attracted into the industry. I feel that currently the industry is not promoting itself as an attractive, challenging but rewarding workplace - resulting in the loss of great talent to other industries. I believe that the public do not fully understand the complexities and interdependencies that we have to unravel, understand and resolve, as well as the professionalism that is required to achieve the intended results. We as an industry also need to get better at demonstrating the diversity of specialisms our industry has to offer to show potential candidates that really there is something of interest for everybody.”


Angharad Llewellyn, Project Manager

“In terms of project management and engineering in the buildings and property sector, I would like to see the sector become more innovated in not only design but construction processes and materials, in order to be more considerate of the environment and our planet. We can engineer and manage solutions that benefit the user but more work can be done to make the work we do and the way we do it more environmentally friendly.”

Kirsty Barrie, Project Manager

Over my lifetime I would like to see a massive shift towards environmentally focused decision making.”


Could you play a part in an evolving industry? Check out our careers page to see all our current job opportunities.

Find out more about what we do on our sectors and services pages

Read our introduction to our amazing series Celebrating International Women in Engineering which we are running all this week, recognising International Women in Engineering Day on 23 June. 

Kerstin Hucknall.jpg

Kerstin Hucknall, Project Planner “We need to get better at demonstrating the diversity of specialisms our industry has to offer to show potential candidates that really there is something of interest for everybody.”

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