My experience in the UK and abroad (as well as from discussing with colleagues and reading global literature) shows that engineering can only go so far to resolve and address the challenges that we face today. For example, such challenges include how we manage surface water to reduce flooding and pollution or how we manage the solids loads in the drainage network and arriving at wastewater treatment works. Essentially, our desire to ‘build’ our way out of problems has or is coming to an end. Therefore, how we engage and mobilise a change in people’s actions is fundamental. I believe this cannot be done through engineering and technology alone (although they will still play their part). However, it will be through using various social science techniques and learning to mobilise individuals and communities.