The Institution's Research Fund is managed by the Research Panel which provides financial support to researchers. The Research Panel meets four times a year and reports to the Structural Futures Committee. To find out more please visit our Research Panel page.

Applications for grants to support research projects can be made to the Research Panel through the different schemes:

Post graduates who have yet to complete their PhD are also invited to attend the annual Young Researchers’ Conference.

The Institution would like to thank members for their contributions to the Research Fund.


The industry focussed research challenge means that research funding available through the IStructE’s established schemes can be focussed on research that is well aligned with the current challenges faced by the profession. Applications through the established schemes that address the priorities of the industry focussed research challenge will receive additional credit in the initial selection of grant winners however, grants can still be awarded to high quality applications on other topics.
The challenge is built around research themes that aim to encourage and facilitate collaboration between industry and researchers and to raise awareness of the industry needs.
The Research Panel has set the following themes: “Construction materials”, “Loading on buildings”, "Solutions for developing countries" and "Designing for resilience". Applications for funding are encouraged through the existing award schemes that are closely aligned to one or more of the points below:

Construction materials
  • Advanced engineering materials;
  • Durable materials considering life-cycle issues;
  • New materials and materials used in other industries;
  • Reflections on ‘old materials’.
Loading on buildings
  • Imposed loading on floors;
  • Assessment of actual loading on structures;
  • Designing buildings for being adaptable to load levels;
  • Combinations of loading and a review/evaluation of international practice.
  • Sub-themes for "Loading on buildings" are available here.
Solutions for developing countries
  • Locally led solutions (i.e. research carried out at a local university or local industry);
  • Enabling local societal security;
  • Use of accessible technology;
  • Resilience to natural hazards and/or climate change.
Designing for resilience
  • Learning from failures
  • Resilience of elements, structures and systems
  • Learning from BIM and structural health monitoring data
  • Learning from performance/inspection of built infrastructure

The following topics were raised at the 2016 Young Researchers Conference by senior industry figures as needing research. Watch their quick-fire pecha kucha style presentation in our webinars section. The Research Panel displays the topics here for the benefit of academics who may be looking for ideas for student projects and for others who wish to engage in discussion about particular research needs.

Robert Bird Group:
  • practical application of modern technology to design and construction challenges.
  • how to make optimisation and digital design relevant for a majority rather than a minority of structures, ensuring that the digital design and delivery process considers all constraints – especially the impact of construction sequencing and practical fabrication.
  • efficient use of resources
  • parametric design
  • using advanced materials from other industries.
To discuss the above topics contact:
John Ward
T: +44 (0)207 633 2880

 Waterman Group:
  • transparent walls to improve lighting but caution needed around fire protection
  • monocoque  large span floors i.e. using bridge deck technology in buildings
  • floor damping in buildings
  • 3D printing in construction
  • deployable structures in buildings.

To discuss the above topics contact:

Edwin Bergbaum

T: +44 (0)7831 543618

Flint & Neill Ltd:
  • learning from failure (e.g. box girder bridge collapses) and how industry can share information about the causes of failures more openly
  • loadings for bridges
  • storing and managing historical data
  • resilience of infrastructure - especially critical or strategic infrastructure that would have an economic impact if taken out of service
  • computational fluid dynamics
  • education – fundamentals are becoming increasingly important
  • managing “big data” e.g. structural health monitoring for bridges.

To discuss the above topics contact:

Chris Walker


T: +44(0)2079407600


  • serviceability of existing infrastructure
  • new and emerging forms of construction
  • BIM for existing structures and scanning existing structures to input to BIM
  • Magnesium Oxide cement
  • fatigue damage of masonry bridges.

To discuss the above topics contact:

Carl Brookes


T: +44  (0)7918054817


Mark Pniewski


T: +44 (0)7436274650)


Structural-Safety works with the professions, industry and government on safety matters concerned with the design, construction and use of building and civil engineering structures. Visit for reports on issues around structural failures that may point to research needs.

Further information on grant schemes, and the Industry Focussed Research Challenge themes
Contact: Research Panel Secretary Berenice Chan.


Find out more...


Research Fund

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