Fewer than one in 10 engineering professionals in Britain are women, the lowest proportion of female engineers in the EU.
The findings are published in a Government-commissioned review, which says more must be done to encourage young people, particularly girls, to take up the profession.
The review says this may be down to girls' A-level choices, their perceptions of engineering and gender stereotypes in the careers advice students receive.
More top news
CCTV footage has emerged of a violent attack where a blind man was pushed onto the tracks at Chelmsford station
A farm owner has been jailed in south Wales after forcing a "vulnerable" labourer to work for free for 13 years while living in squalor.
Ministers are prepared to battle to stop an extra £1.7bn payment demanded by Brussels, but it is far from certain that the UK will win.