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The Global Energy Workforce

The Global Energy Workforce -

The most recent Global Energy Talent Index (GETI) report (2022) focuses on the opportunities and challenges raised by the workforce in the energy industry. This 6th edition of the report draws on about 10,000 professional respondents from 161 countries and 144 nationalities, in which they completed a 84-question survey by December 2021. The report covers specific subgroups of the energy field—oil and gas, petrochemicals, nuclear, and renewables.

According to the report, respondents expressed that the most important opportunities over the next three years include: transition to cleaner energy, advancements in engineering techniques and technologies, and changing ways of working. They also reported that the biggest challenges over the next three years are: COVID-19 and/or similar public health factors, transition to cleaner energy, economic outlook, and changing ways of working. Indeed, across all energy fields, survey participants expressed that promising opportunities are also possible challenges for the energy industry.

Overall, engineering skills tend to be the most important technical skills, such that approximately 60% of hiring managers across the different energy fields sought these skills among the future energy workforce. In nuclear and power energy fields, respectively, 72% and 61% of respondents expressed possessing such engineering skills. However, gaps in these desired engineering skills were observed for renewables, oil and gas, and petrochemical fields; professionals in these energy fields reported that they possessed engineering skills at much lower rates than the proportion of hiring managers that desire such technical skills (see Figure 1).

The Global Energy Workforce -
Figure 1: Engineering Skills

Still, gaps in engineering skills are not the only area for improvement for energy fields. The report found that women accounted for between 10% and 23% of engineers in these fields (see Figure 2). Specifically, women had the lowest representation among professionals in oil and gas, where they comprise 10% of the workforce. While still under-represented, women represent 23% of professionals in the nuclear energy field. Indeed, respondents expressed that the energy sector could improve on diversifying their talent. To do so, the authors of the report suggest supporting women professionals by providing relocation support, providing on-site childcare facilities, and enhancing maternity leave. More importantly, the energy industry can home in on the opportunity in changing the ways of working by offering remote work/flexible hours to support parents, and particularly, working mothers.

The Global Energy Workforce -
Figure 2: Women’s representation by energy field

SWE members interested in reading the report, can download it for free here.


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  • Ursula Nguyen

    Ursula Nguyen is a doctoral candidate in STEM Education at The University of Texas at Austin. She has a BS in Biomedical Engineering from UT-Austin. Prior to returning to UT, she was a first-grade Bilingual math and science teacher in Houston, TX. There, she was also the first-grade Math lead at her school. Her research interest on issues of equity in STEM education at the intersection of race/ethnicity and gender stems from her experiences as both an educator of STEM subjects and as a past engineering student. Currently, she is a graduate research assistant for Dr. Riegle-Crumb and a graduate research intern at SWE.