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This debate will focus on whether sustainable development should not only consider the physical assets but the economic resilience of cities as well. Is it our role as Civil Engineers to consider how our infrastructure is impacting on the economics of a city and the viability of its investments? If this is the case how do we go about encompassing this within the day job?
This breakfast brefing forms part of Lord Robert Mair’s presidential visit to the West Midlands.
Robert was appointed Professor of Geotechnical Engineering at Cambridge University in 1998. He is now the Sir Kirby Laing Professor of Civil Engineering. In 2011 he became Chief Engineering Adviser to the Laing O'Rourke Group and Chairman of their Engineering Excellence Group.
As well as working on many international tunnelling and deep excavation projects, Robert has been closely involved with the Jubilee Line Extension for London Underground, the Channel Tunnel Rail Link (now HS1) and Crossrail.
Robert was Senior Vice-President of the Royal Academy of Engineering 2008-11 and was awarded the ICE Gold Medal in 2004 and the President's Medal in 2013.
He was Chairman of the Royal Society/Royal Academy of Engineering Report on Review of Shale Gas and Hydraulic Fracturing for the Government, published in 2012. More recently, he became Chairman of the newly formed Science Advisory Council of the Department for Transport.
In October 2015 he was appointed to the House of Lords as an independent crossbencher. As a crossbencher, Robert will owe no allegiance to a political party and will maintain the ability to take part in legislative debates free of party considerations.