Issue Statement: May 11, 2015

The Canadian economy is facing future skilled labour shortages in engineering.  To address this problem, the engineering profession needs to increase participation from specific groups, such as women, who currently account for more than half of the Canadian population but are significantly under-represented in engineering.

Engineers Canada believes that in order to meet the Canadian economic demand for engineers, the profession will need to be reflective of the diversity in Canadian society. The profession can better understand and consequently better protect the public interest if it is more representative of Canada’s demographics.

Engineers Canada is working towards raising the percentage of women that are newly licensed engineers (P.Eng.) to 30% by the year 2030.   This is known as the 30 by 30 goal.  Achieving this goal will be vital to the sustainability of the engineering profession and the health of the Canadian labour market.

Quick Facts

  • Women currently constitute nearly 12% of all registered engineers (P.Eng.) and close to 19% of undergraduate engineering students in Canada.
  • The United Nations considers 30% to be a critical mass, and this is what is needed for the benefits of diversity to “make a visible impact.” (United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, 2005).
  • It is currently projected that 95,000 engineers will retire by 2020 leaving a large skills and experience gap across the country.
  • The 30 by 30 Goal has received national support across all provinces and territories.

Next Steps

  • Engineers Canada will continue making a special effort to attract women into the profession, working with its members across the country and providing strategic advice and national best practices to inform local action.