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Climate change

Climate change is the biggest threat to our planet. Structural engineers have a responsibility to demonstrate leadership and influence change within the built environment.

With national and international pressure mounting, such as the UK Government pledge to achieve net zero carbon by 2050, structural engineers are taking on the challenge. To assist our members and the wider industry the Institution produces guidance to support built environment professionals.
The Institution is supporting the initiative being taken by a number of leading engineering practices, a “Structural Engineers Declaration” to promote sustainable working practices to tackle the issue of climate change.

Sustainability briefing notes

Climate change resources

Mike Cook FIStructE

Dr Mike Cook named 2020 Gold Medallist

The award recognises Mike's infectious enthusiasm and curiosity for structural engineering and his passion and leadership in responding to the challenges of climate change.

Date - 24 February 2020
the Structural Awards logo

The Structural Awards open to entries, with new emphasis on sustainable practice

Entry criteria have been revised in the light of the climate emergency, asking every submission to clearly demonstrate its sustainability credentials.

Date - 22 January 2020
Career Profiles
Don McQuillan, 2020 IStructE President

Don McQuillan FIStructE - President's Inaugural Address 2020

Prof. Don McQuillan FIStructE, the 100th President of the Institution, lays out the challenges facing the profession in his talk ‘2020 vision: “for an understanding of the future, look to the past”’

Date - 20 January 2020
Author - Don McQuillan
Price - Free
The Structural Engineer
Structural art installation

Redefining structural art: strategies, necessities and opportunities

It is simply not possible to build in the future the way we do today if we want to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, slow the depletion of natural resources and minimise waste production. These challenges can only be addressed if engineers and architects actively include them at the source of their designs.

Date - 2 January 2020
Author - Philippe Block, Tom Van Mele, Matthias Rippmann, Francesco Ranaudo, Cristian Calvo Barentin and Noelle Paulson
Price - £9
The Structural Engineer
Circular economy

Nothing is lost, nothing is created, everything is reused: structural design for a circular economy

Structural designers’ efforts to reduce environmental impacts traditionally consist of developing systems that minimise material quantities or use low-impact materials. A third strategy is currently (re)emerging: the reuse of structural components over multiple service lives and in new layouts.

Date - 2 January 2020
Author - Corentin Fivet and Jan Brutting
Price - £9
The Structural Engineer
Manufacturing buildings

Manufacturing buildings for people and planet

This paper explores issues around the ambitions for use of off-site methods, identifies some lessons from previous projects, and suggests ways to accelerate the adoption of manufacturing-led methods, including professional services delivery, education and skills.

Date - 2 January 2020
Author - Adrian Campbell, Matt Cooper and Andrew Waugh
Price - £9
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Essential Knowledge Text No.8 New structural materials

This text presents a range of emerging materials, both natural and man-made which, in the right circumstances, can offer significant advantages over traditional materials.

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