Keynote Speakers

Concrete Keynote Speaker: Professor John Provis

Prof. John ProvisJohn Provis received his PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Melbourne, Australia, in 2006. Since 2012, he has worked at the University of Sheffield as Professor of Cement Materials Science and Engineering.

He is a Fellow of RILEM, IoM3 and ICT, Editor-in-Chief of the RILEM flagship journal Materials & Structures, a Visiting Professor at Lulea Technical University (Sweden) and holds various other editorial and committee roles. He was awarded the 2013 RILEM Robert L’Hermite Medal, and was granted an honorary doctorate by Hasselt University, Belgium, in 2015 to recognise his leadership in the development of geopolymers and other novel cementitious materials.

His research has been funded by the European Research Council as well as other EU sources, UK Research Councils, industry, and international funding bodies

Bridges Keynote Speaker: Marcos Sanchez

Marcos SanchezMarcos Sanchez Sanchez is a Bridge Engineer currently leading ARUP Bridge Practice in the European Region.

He graduated in 1994 in the School of Civil Engineering of Madrid Polytechnic (Escuela de Ingenieros de Caminos Canales y Puertos, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid). During the last 28 years he has been involved in the design and construction of multitude of bridges including the 250m span Los Tilos concrete arch in La palma Island in the Canaries, the 160m Vicaria Reservoir steel composite arch in the south of Spain, the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy tower extrados Bridge over the river barrow in New Ross that includes two main spans of 230m and the slender 66m Mary elmes urban pedestrian bridge in Cork, amongst others.

He is member of technical committees in worldwide organizations such as FIB (Federation Internationale of Beton, WP1.1.3 Integral Bridges and TG1.7 Construction of concrete structures) or IABSE for which he recently collaborated in their latest publication on extrados bridges (SED 17). Marcos has worked in the first generation of the Eurocodes as member of CEN/TC 250 in Eurocode 1 and 2 and teaches regularly as invited lecturer in Trinity College the lectures in cable supported structures.

During his career he has specialized in conceptual design, optimization and value engineering of long span concrete and steel structures with special focus on the construction stages.

Structures Keynote Speaker: Dr. Larry Bank

Dr. Larry BankLawrence (Larry) Bank is a Research Engineer in the School of Architecture at Georgia Tech and an Adjunct Professor at the City College of New York. From 2008 to 2010, and again from 2013-2014 he served as a Program Director at the National Science Foundation. From 2010 to 2013, he served as the Associate Provost and then Vice President for Research and Sponsored Programs at the City College of New York.

Dr Bank studied in the School of Civil Engineering and the School of Architecture at the University of Cape Town, South Africa from 1975-1976, received his BSc degree in Civil Engineering from the Technion, Israel in 1980, and his MS and PhD degrees in Engineering Mechanics from Columbia University in 1982 and 1985.

He has previously been employed as a Construction Manager in Israel and a Structural Engineer with Leslie Robertson and Associates in New York, and as a faculty member in Civil Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the Catholic University of America, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the City College of New York. He retired from City College in 2017. He is the author of the textbook "Composites for Construction – Structural Design with FRP Materials," (Wiley, 2006), over 250 technical publications, and 10 patents and invention disclosures. He is a Distinguished Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Fellow of the American Concrete Institute (ACI) and a Fellow (and Past President) of the International Institute for FRP in Construction (IIFC).

Geotechnical Keynote Speaker: Professor Mike Long

Professor Mike LongMike Long is a civil engineering graduate of University College Cork and subsequently University College Dublin. Having first spent 11 years or so in industry, mostly with ARUP, he has been a lecturer / researcher in geotechnics at University College Dublin (UCD) since 1996. His main research interests comprise the characterisation of natural soils, in particular soft soils, with civil engineering applications in mind. He also consults regularly on practical projects. He has strong links with Norway and is a visiting professor at NTNU, Trondheim and well as regularly collaborating with Norwegian colleagues in several organisations such as the Norwegian Geotechnical Institute and in the Norwegian Public Roads Administration.

Transport Keynote Speaker: Dr. Karen Lucas

Dr. Karen LucasDr. Karen Lucas is Professor of Human Geography and Director of Research in the Department of Geography within the School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED) and leads the Transport and Mobilities research theme for the Manchester Urban Institute at The University of Manchester. She has 25+ years’ experience of delivering social research into practice in transport, employing a variety of mixed methods approaches to issues of mobility, accessibility, and social justice.

Karen is a world-leading expert on transport and social justice in the Global North and South and is currently devising a new integrated methodology for the social assessment of road projects for National Highways. She previously undertook similar assessments of the A465 bypass project for the Welsh Government and of the Lower Thames Crossing project for the Department of Transport. She is director of the International Network for Transport and Accessibility in Low Income Communities (INTALInC)., which is a global network of academics, policymakers, NGOs and frontline agencies to promote transport justice in Global South cities.

Karen also researches issue of energy poverty and environmental justice in the UK context, currently leading the High-End Energy Consumers project https://www.creds.ac.uk/high-energy-consumers/ for the Centre for Research of Energy Demand Systems (CREDS), which is funded by UK Research and Innovation.

She is co-chair of NECTAR Cluster 7: Social and Health Impacts of Transport and a member of the Editorial Boards for the Journal of Transport Geography, Springer's Transportation journal and Urban Book Series.

Energy Keynote Speaker: Professor Brian Norton

Professor Brian NortonProfessor Brian Norton PhD DSc DUniv(h.c.) FIAE MRIA is Head of Energy Research at Tyndall National Institute, Research Professor at University College Cork and Professor of Solar Energy Applications at TU Dublin.

He is a Member of the Royal Irish Academy, Ireland’s highest academic distinction, and a Fellow of the Irish Academy of Engineering. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers. His awards include; the CIBSE Napier Shaw Medal for the development of the degree-hour building energy-use correlation; the Energy Institute’s Roscoe Award which recognized his research comparing the embodied environmental impact of all renewable and non-renewable energy sources and the American Association of Publishers PROSE Award for the book “Comprehensive Renewable Energy”. He has received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Solaris Conference series and “Solar Energy” Journal Best Paper Award in Photovoltaics.

He is currently a Principal Investigator in MaREI, the Irish national research centre for Energy, Climate and Marine and leads its Energy Efficiency research area. He is an Honorary Professor at Universities in Northern Ireland, China and USA. He has given numerous invited and keynote lectures including to the Maddox series at Texas Tech University, the Solar Energy Seminar Series at Purdue University, the GIAN initiative, India and the Annual David Hall Memorial Lecture to the United Kingdom Solar Energy Society. He is currently Vice-President and Treasurer of the European Sustainable Energy Innovation Alliance and serves on the Steering Committee of the Daylight Academy. He has led international collaborative research programmes, IEA and COST activities. He has undertaken strategic reviews of energy research; including those for the UK, Estonia and several universities internationally.

Professor Norton has supervised over fifty doctorates. His extensive research outputs have received over 12,000 citations with an h-index of 57.

As Secretary for Policy and International of the Royal Irish Academy, he serves on the European Academies Science Advisory Committee (EUSAC) and the EASAC Energy Panel.

As immediate past-President of Dublin Institute of Technology, he played a major role in the creation of Technological University Dublin and in the realisation of its flagship Dublin city-centre campus at Grangegorman. Previously he held posts at Ulster and Cranfield Universities. Originally qualified as a Physicist, he holds Doctorates in Engineering from Cranfield and Nottingham Universities and an Honorary Doctorate from Universite de Technologie de Troyes.

Pedagogy Keynote Speaker: Jennifer Boyer (TU Dublin)

Jennifer BoyerJennifer Boyer is the inaugural Vice President of Sustainability at Ireland’s first Technological University, TU Dublin.

As a member of the University Executive Team (UET), the Vice President for Sustainability makes an active contribution to delivering on the University’s mission and shares responsibility for evolving the overall University Strategy. The Vice President for Sustainability at TU Dublin provides leadership, strategic direction and oversight for the coordination and management of the University’s activities in relation to sustainability, across both professional services and academic domains. Jennifer is responsible for positioning the University as a leader and voice for sustainability, a way of living and working in a new, more balanced way, a way that protects our planet for future generations.

Most recently in her role as Assistant Head of School, responsible for Architecture at TU Dublin, she enjoyed working with students and colleagues to implement major curriculum revision to the B Arch programme to embed the UN Sustainable Development Goals and address the challenges of climate change. As practice Director at Murray O’Laoire Architects, Jennifer managed their Central European office and large multi-disciplinary teams to deliver sustainable mixed-use urban design projects for commercial clients and government agencies around the world.

Jennifer’s active research interests reside within the potential integration of change management, innovation and entrepreneurship to achieve models of sustainable practice. Her experience of practice, teaching, programme development and academic management has given her an understanding of the importance of practice-based, project-led student learning as essential to developing relevant, creative and responsible graduates. She is a registered architect, an active community organiser, a sustainability advocate and a firm believer that every person’s future is brighter with the gift of education.

Jennifer is a graduate from Cornell University’s Bachelor of Architecture programme in 2001, sitting her Professional Registration exams in Ireland at University College Dublin in 2007. She completed her MBA as an Aspire Scholar at the Michael Smurfit School of Business, UCD in 2014.

Laura Burke: Environmental Keynote Speaker

Laura BurkeLaura Burke is the Director General of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), appointed in 2011 and served as a Director within the EPA since 2004. As Director General she has the responsibility to lead and strategically manage the EPA. Laura is the Chair of the European Environment Agency (EEA) Management Board. Prior to joining the EPA, she worked in the private sector. Laura is a graduate chemical engineer of University College Dublin (UCD), holds an MSc from Trinity College, Dublin, is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers of Ireland and is a Chartered Director. In 2016 Laura was awarded the UCD Engineering Graduates Association (EGA) Distinguished Graduate Award.