Can engineers fix the world?

Take the test


What type of engineer will you be in the future?

Would you say that you are rational, rebellious or progressive? To find out, choose one or more definitions for each of the following 10 terms.

What do you think when you see a machine?

  • An example of technical progress that transforms energy, for better or for worse
  • A useless object designed for today's consumer society
  • A tangible illustration of human progress

In your opinion, the price of an object should be:

  • A figure that represents the object's value in a given context
  • An amount that reflects the energy and resources that have gone into producing the object
  • A figure based on supply and demand

In your view, degrowth is:

  • A stereotypical, but relevant concept
  • Our only option for fixing the world
  • An idea that is incompatible with the 21st century

In your opinion, the field of human science is:

  • An important part of the engineering curriculum
  • The only thing that really matters at the end of the day
  • A field of science that isn't really a science

How would you describe a company?

  • Individuals combining their efforts to achieve a common goal
  • A simple money-making machine
  • A good way of achieving progress

In your opinion, the idea of fixing the world:

  • Is a major challenge that needs to be tackled as part of a collective effort
  • Involves scrapping everything and starting again from scratch
  • A vain and naive pursuit; you can't make an omelette without breaking a few eggs

In your opinion, eco-design is:

  • Hard to assess, because every activity uses resources
  • A marketing concept invented by capitalists as an excuse to continue over-producing
  • The ideal solution for maintaining our standard of living without destroying the environment

How would you describe an activity's carbon footprint?

  • An important, but abstract value that is obtained by an often obscure calculation
  • The only value that should be taken into account when calculating the price of a service or product
  • Just one of the many compasses for finding our way in a world bound by constraints

In your view, ethics is:

  • A set of rules that should be defined and applied by new generations of engineers
  • Social and environmental values that were not available to yesterday's engineers
  • A principle that applies to decision-makers, not engineers

You believe that environmental responsibility is:

  • challenge that should not overshadow social and societal cohesion
  • An objective that will remain out of reach unless radical changes are made to the business model
  • One of the challenges facing today's world, and one that should not overshadow the other challenges