Womens Engineering Society: Inspiring women as engineers, scientists and technical leaders

Role Models

Isobel Pollock

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Professor Isobel Pollock

Awards: Hon DSc FIMechE; FCGI; FRSA


Isobel is a consultant, businesswoman and Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor in Engineering and Design at the University of Leeds School of Engineering working on multi-disciplinary engineering projects, technology road mapping and Knowledge Transfer Projects (KTPs).

She has senior engineering management experience with multi-national companies including ICI, DuPont, Robert McBride and Beatson Clark. She developed multi-discipline management and engineering skills in chemicals, metal handling, glassware, food, drinks and pharmaceutical industries.

Isobel joined the Institution in 1983. She has attained a number of Institution achievements. She was the first woman to chair the Institution’s Yorkshire Branch and was the first Branch of the Year winner in 1995. From 1999 – 2006, she was Vice President of the Institution, chairing numerous committees including Qualifications & Membership and Regional Chairman. As Honorary Treasurer she initiated a successful £1.6m cost reduction plan and has been a Trustee of Institution’s Pension Scheme. She has also been an active assessor and mentor for Manufacturing Excellence, including mentoring the SME winning company in 2008. As Deputy President she has taken a lead role working with the Council Strategy Committee.

In 2007, she was the founding Chair of the Institution’s Heritage Committee. She was responsible for re-vitalising and formalising the Engineering Heritage Awards, and approved the publication of the book “Recognising Engineering Excellence”, first published in October 2009, which illustrated the first 64 heritage awards. The total now stands at 72 Heritage Awards.

Isobel is a Board Member of the Engineering Council, chairing the Quality Assurance Committee licensing institutions and monitoring academic accreditation. In 2008, she led the review of the Engineering Council’s licensing processes and published the New Approach to Institution Licensing focusing on Continuous Improvement Criteria (CPI).

From 1999 – 2010, she was an AUDI Design Foundation Trustee, supporting young designers. With Engineering Technology Board staff, she produced the Rough Guide Designing your Future which provides career advice on STEM; 50,000 copies have been distributed.

At the National Physical Laboratory, Isobel is Chair of the Electromagnetics & Time (formerly Pathfinder) Working Group for the National Measurement Office on the research programme for fundamental measurements.

She is a Member of Court of the Worshipful Company of Engineers, and a Freeman of the City of London She is a Fellow of the City & Guilds of London Institute and of the Royal Society of Arts.

She received an Honorary DSc from Huddersfield University in 2004 for services to engineering and the engineering profession.

When she can, Isobel enjoys golf and travel to different parts of the world.

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