By: Konrad Siu (P.Eng., FCSCE), along with Dr. Robert Driver (P.Eng., MCSCE) and Dr. Jeffrey DiBattista (P.Eng., MCSCE), Co-chairs of the 125th Annual CSCE Conference
The annual conference marking the 125th anniversary of the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE), running from June 6-9, 2012, will offer an exciting venue and numerous opportunities to learn and share experiences. Edmonton, Alberta, will welcome civil engineering practitioners, researchers, and policymakers from around the world with a river valley parks system 22 times larger than New York’s Central Park, and a dazzling array of unique dining, cultural and recreational opportunities.
The conference itself is sure to be a memorable affair. Along with anniversary celebrations and regular annual meetings of the CSCE, the program features a number of specialty conferences:
- The 12th International Environmental Specialty Conference;
- The 3rd International Structural Specialty Conference;
- The 9th International Transportation Specialty Conference; and
- The brand-new 1st International Specialty Conference on Sustaining Public Infrastructure.
The new conference event focusing on sustaining public infrastructure offers a unique opportunity for infrastructure practitioners and policy-makers to examine issues beyond the traditional discipline of engineering, including all of the financial, political, social, and environmental elements that affect sustainability. In light of this, the first everAward for Government Leadership in Sustainable Infrastructure will also be presented at the 2012 Conference.
First International Specialty Conference on Sustaining Public Infrastructure
Specialists have been chosen from around the world to present and discuss issues, identify current and future challenges, and highlight recent advancements and innovative solutions. Participants can expect a variety of special sessions and panel discussions.
The International Panel on global asset management practices from various countries will feature key speakers such as Dr. Ian Greenwood (New Zealand and Australia), Dr. Bryan Adey (Switzerland), William Wallace (USA), Rhys Davis (UK), Dr. Gye Woon Choi (Korea), Ravi Mital (India) and Dr. Guy Felio (Canada).
Representatives from the City of St. Albert, various First Nations Communities, and the City of Whitehorse will lead a Small Communities Session aimed at exploring public infrastructure issues and strategies for smaller communities in Canada. In theGovernment Panel, speakers from Alberta’s provincial government and local municipalities will discuss specific roles that governments play in infrastructure decisions.
A Financial Sustainability Panel will look into various innovative approaches towards attaining financial sustainability. Featured panelists will include Tim Beaucamp from the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants of Canada, Casey G. Vander Ploeg of the Canada West Foundation, and Bernie Kreiner representing the Government Finance Officers Association.
From the City of Edmonton, Jim Andrais (Office of Environment), Heather McRae (Community Services), Gord Jackson (Sustainable Development) and Rhonda Toohey (Transportation Planning) will present the Edmonton Case Study session. This session will explore the City’s six over-arching strategic plans to achieve its imaginative and ambitious long-term vision.
The specialty conference on sustainability will also showcase technical papers investigating many facets of the theme of sustaining public infrastructure, including infrastructure management, decision making, and sustainable practices.
Meeting CSCE’s Vision
Organizers believe this first-ever International Specialty Conference on Sustaining Public Infrastructure fits well with the Canadian Society of Civil Engineering’s Vision 2020—Leadership in Sustainable Infrastructure—and breaks new ground in developing a conversation among the multiple disciplines that make and build our society.
The importance of civil infrastructure and the need to make wise, long-term investments are gaining broad acceptance at the international level. Society has urgent infrastructure requirements today, and at the same time must plan for the needs of future generations. This demand for enduring, financially prudent, and environmentally-sound infrastructure presents huge challenges—and opportunities—for civil engineers and allied professions the world over. This landmark event in Edmonton will provide a forum in which to share the ideas and experiences necessary if we are to deliver these vital infrastructure services.
As Co-Chairs of the CSCE 2012 Conference, it is our pleasure to invite you to Edmonton from June 6-9, and to stay a while longer to enjoy this vibrant, welcoming city if you are able. It will be a great time to support the advancement of excellence in civil engineering and meet colleagues from around the world.
Konrad Siu is the Director of the Office of Infrastructure and Funding Strategy for the City of Edmonton. The Office’s mandate is to implement Edmonton City Council’s Infrastructure Strategy to address the City’s growing disparity between infrastructure capital needs and available funding. Konrad has been actively involved in a number of national initiatives related to infrastructure management, including the Canadian Infrastructure Report Card, National Round Table on Sustainable Infrastructure, National Asset Management Working Group, Public Sector Accounting Board (PSAB) Task Force on Assessment of Tangible Capital Assets, and the Board of Directors for the Canadian Network of Asset Managers. Konrad also served as Co-chair of the Core Public Infrastructure National Advisory Committee, and Vice-chair of committees contributing to the development of the “National Guide to Sustainable Municipal Infrastructure” (InfraGuide) and “Framework for Assessment of State, Performance and Management of Canada’s Core Public Infrastruce.”
Konrad is a member of the Canadian Society of Civil Engineering (CSCE) Infrastructure Renewal Committee, and a member of the Organizing Committee for the CSCE 1st Specialty Conference on Infrastructure Technologies, Management and Policies (2005). He has been invited to speak at numerous conferences and seminars on infrastructure asset management, and published several papers and articles in technical journals and magazines.
Konrad holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering and a Master of Engineering degree from the University of Manitoba, as well as a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Alberta. He also has completed the Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.
Konrad is a Fellow of the Canadian Society of Civil Engineering (CSCE). The Office of Infrastructure and Funding Strategy has recently received Silver in the Institute of Public Administration of Canada/Deliotte Public Sector Leadership Award in the municipal category for its leadership in advancing infrastructure management.
Dr. Robert Driver
Dr. Robert Driver is Professor and Associate Chair of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Alberta, where he received his Ph.D. degree in 1996. In his role as Associate Chair, he is responsible for all undergraduate engineering programs offered by the Department. He conducts applied engineering research principally in the areas of design and behaviour of steel and composite structures and systems subjected to extreme or unusual loads, and has published over 100 technical papers. In addition, he has taught undergraduate and post-graduate engineering courses in Canada, the United States, and South Africa.
Dr. Driver has a total of 27 years of experience in the steel fabrication industry, engineering consulting, research, and engineering education, including stints at the Canadian Institute of Steel Construction (Toronto), Halsall Associates (Toronto), and Lafayette College (Pennsylvania). He chairs technical subcommittees for CSA Standards S16, Design of Steel Structures, and S850, Design and Assessment of Buildings Subjected to Blast Loads, and is a member of the Board of Governors of the Steel Structures Education Foundation. He has been the recipient of numerous awards for both research and teaching excellence. Among his awards for research are the J. James R. Croes Medal and the Raymond C. Reese Research Prize of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the H.A. Krentz Research Award of the Steel Structures Education Foundation, and the McCalla Research Professorship from the University of Alberta. His teaching awards include the APEGGA Excellence in Education Summit Award, the Outstanding Teaching Award of the Pacific Northwest Section of the American Society for Engineering Education, and the Rutherford Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching from the University of Alberta. He has also held a Visiting Professorship awarded by the Southern African Institute of Steel Construction and was a Visiting Research Scholar at Lehigh University.
Dr. Jeff DiBattista
Dr. Jeff DiBattista, P.Eng., MCSCE, is a structural engineering principal with the integrated design firmDIALOG. Based in Edmonton, Jeff is passionate about design excellence and its vital contribution to quality of life in our society. With DIALOG since 2000, Jeff’s portfolio includes bridges, schools, university buildings, and community and cultural facilities across Alberta.
Jeff graduated in 1993 from the University of Waterloo with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Civil Engineering. He and his wife, Traci, then took an adventure westward so that Jeff could pursue an M.Sc. and a Ph.D. in structural engineering at the University of Alberta.
Amongst other community involvement, Jeff served on the CSCE Edmonton Section Executive from 1996 to 2008, and he is currently Past President of Consulting Engineers of Alberta. Jeff has also served as an Associate Adjunct Professor in the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Engineering, where he is regarded for his leadership in mentoring and being a tireless advocate for higher education.
Jeff and Traci are parents of two amazing children: Alyssa, 14, and Nicholas, 11. In summer 2010 they set out as a family−with Jeff riding a bicycle−to cross Canada. Their goals were to spend time together as a family, to learn about our great nation and its people, and to raise money to fight cancer. By summer’s end Jeff had cycled 6931 km and helped inspire supporters to donate more than $40,000 towards the fight against cancer.
Jeff looks forward to meeting you in Edmonton for CSCE Conference 2012!