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8 great quotes about structural engineering by Past Presidents


Eight extracts from past Presidential Addresses celebrate Faith Wainwright's inaugural address on 11 January 2018.​

The structure can be sophisticated, eloquent and economic, but if it is late, ambiguous or difficult to construct, it will have failed.
Norman Train, 2010 President.

An effective wealth-producing society has two essential requirements. The first is a culture that understands and is able to apply science-based knowledge. The second requirement is a large cadre of broadly-trained engineers.
J. A. Waller, 1992–93 President.

As structural engineers we play a critical role in the projects for which we are appointed. If success is judged simply against the need to provide adequate resistance to collapse, then we are very successful, but the value we can bring to a project goes far beyond that.
Roger Plank, 2011 President.

As structural engineers, we have a duty not only to make our structures safe and sustainable, but also to do so to the highest standards at our disposal.
Ian Firth, 2017 President.

Ours is a numerate profession. We don’t have to be mathematicians but mathematics is central to much of what we achieve. The profession is firmly rooted in the sciences of physics and chemistry. It has foundations in the visual arts; it is close to architecture. Above all, it is founded on logical thinking. It is demanding, where the burden of ensuring safety is always to the fore, as we strive for structural efficiency and excellence.
John A. Hill, 2000 President.

What could be more exciting than a long bridge, a tall building, a crane or even a big hole? Let’s shout that our profession is creative, fun and inspirational. The rewards for recognising and celebrating our own key strengths await us.
Tim Ibell, 2015 President.

Structural engineering is not only concerned with the conception of structural systems, their calculation, construction and stability, but it is equally concerned with service; service to the community, ensuring that our society is adequately informed about what we can do for it.
Peter Dunican, 1977–78 President.

The fact that engineers get fulfilment from their work supports the view that creative engineering work can be satisfying, perhaps even as satisfying as writing, painting or performing music. Dare we even suggest that the pleasure derived from each can be identical, at least for the practitioner!
H.P. J. Taylor, 1993–94 President.

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