Last edited 17 Mar 2023

Women's Engineering Society

WES 23 Logo banner.jpg


[edit] 2023 update

The WES Annual Conference brings together women and allies from across all disciplines for a two day conference. The event will showcase inspiring role models and demonstrate how organisations are striving to improve diversity and empower women in engineering. For further information visit

The draft programme is now available (please be aware timings are not confirmed and this programme is subject to change) download a copy here.

The full programme for 2023 will be available shortly in the meantime confirmed speakers include:

Workshops will cover 'Building your career' and more


[edit] Introduction

The Women's Engineering Society (WES) is a charity that supports the United Kingdom’s network of women engineers, scientists and technologists. The organisation’s mission is to see “...a nation in which women are as likely as men to choose to study and work in engineering, and one in which there are enough engineers to meet a growing demand.” It was the first such organisation for women in the engineering profession.

[edit] Early history

The Women's Engineering Society was formed in 1919 as an initiative to help organise women who had worked in engineering roles during the First World War and wished to continue in technical professions. It was founded by Lady Parsons (Katharine Bethell) and six other influential women, including her daughter Rachel. Both Lady Parsons and her daughter had worked as engineers during the war and could understand the frustrations other female engineers were experiencing in the workplace.

In 1969, the Women in Engineering Year award was introduced by the Women’s Engineering Society, and in 1984 they assisted in the establishment of the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) campaign.

The Women's Engineering Society launched an annual National Women in Engineering Day in 2014 to mark its 95th anniversary. The event takes place every year on 23 June.

[edit] Modern day activities

With a focus on education, the organisation offers scholarships to candidates pursuing careers in engineering. It also has an extensive archive tracing the role of women in the engineering profession.

The Women’s Engineering Society consults with various government bodies about the progression of women in engineering. Membership of the organisation is dictated by qualifications and experience.

The Women’s Engineering Society focusses on the following areas:

[edit] WES Annual Conference 2022

The WES Annual Conference 2022 is on 28 and 29 April, and presents a line up of women from all industries, discussing everything from the future of energy to the invention and innovation In sustainability. It also offers the opportunity to network with women from all engineering paths.

To view the agenda and book a place please visit;

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