I read with a yawn the usual fine words about raising the status of engineers, and puzzled comments about why girls are not attracted to the profession.
I then noticed the proposed groupings for the government- sponsored Newly Revised Social Class System, which included Group 1 - Professionals: all lawyers, doctors, vets, teachers, librarians and social workers. The nearest classification to civil engineers came in Group 7 (out of 8), which included 'road construction and maintenance workers' along with 'domestic and refuse collectors'.
Perhaps the Institution should contact Professor David Rose of Essex University, who is credited with devising the system. Surely, to see chartered engineers included in a definition of professionals in the many questionnaires and statistics everybody receives these days, would do more to raise engineers' status with the general public, than any number of learned discussions that are only reported in technical journals?
9 Mulberry Court, Huntingdon, York