Civil Engineering with concentration in Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure

Posted on Monday, April 6, 2020

Professor Colin Rennie shares some insight on the new concentration for the master’s program that reflects the need to build creatively in order to respond to evolving constraints in the industry.

What’s this new concentration in Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure?

The demand for expertise in sustainable and resilient infrastructure is increasing. Civil engineers are responsible for ensuring that the infrastructure they create is resilient to natural and anthropogenic hazards, including floods, earthquakes, and terrorist attacks. Given recent effects of climate change and geopolitics, an increased risk of hazards is resulting in the need for stronger infrastructure with greater load-bearing capacity.

At the same time, the sustainability of society depends on innovative infrastructure design solutions that minimize resource and energy use. More resilient infrastructure may have longer design life, which leads to improved sustainability, but may consequently require more resources.

“Through research and training, you will be ready to design resilient yet sustainable infrastructure to meet the growing needs.” – Colin Rennie, Professor and Civil Engineering Department Chair

A growing demand for infrastructure expertise

The Government of Canada has committed $180B through 2027/2028 towards public transit, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation infrastructure, and rural and northern communities. This includes investments to improve environmental quality of water and wastewater management; climate change and disaster adaptation, resilience, and mitigation; and clean growth initiatives.

Infrastructure Canada is committed to ensuring modern, sustainable and resilient infrastructure. To meet this commitment, there is an increasing demand for highly trained civil engineers who can consider both sustainability and resiliency when designing infrastructure.

The design of resilient yet sustainable infrastructure is a lasting challenge for civil engineers. However, conventional training in this field fails to consider both sustainability and resiliency simultaneously. As a student in this program, you will acquire these skills, which are in high demand by government and industry, and you will be poised to contribute strongly to society in the coming decades.

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