Scruton Lecture 2017: Wind engineering for serviceability and resilience, London

23 November, 2017 | 18:00 - 19:45

Venue address:

Institution of Civil Engineers
One Great George Street
London SW1P 3AA
United Kingdom
High wind speeds cause disruption to transport and energy networks
High wind speeds cause disruption to transport and energy networks

About this event

Traditionally the role of wind engineers has focused on determining the design wind loading caused by extreme wind speeds on a wide range of civil engineering structures, through the use of atmospheric boundary layer wind tunnel testing, computational fluid dynamics calculations and a series of well-developed codes of practice.

However, the effects of winds on the built environment, both beneficial and detrimental, are much more wide ranging, and the expertise of wind engineers can be applied to a variety of issues across a range of sectors.

At the 2017 Scruton lecture, the presenter will consider such wind effects as a holistic whole, ranging from the beneficial effects of low wind speeds on ventilation and air quality, through the discomfort and distress caused by higher wind speed levels, to the disruption to transport and energy networks and the structural damage caused by higher wind speeds.

Special attention will be paid to issues of serviceability and infrastructure resilience.

The speaker - Professor Chris Barker from the University of Birmingham, will:

  • Explore the effects of winds on the built environment are wide ranging and the expertise of wind engineers can be applied to a variety of issues across a range of sectors
  • Consider analysis of wind effects and the resilience of infrastructure
  • Highlight existing practice and new methodologies required to improve serviceability and increase infrastructure resilience


18:00 Registration and welcome refreshments

18:30 Welcome from the Chair, John Rees BEng ACGI MSc DIC CEng FICE

18:35 Wind Engineering for serviceability and resilience
Prof Chris Barker – Professor of Environmental Fluid Mechanics, School of Engineering at the University of Birmingham

19:20 Questions and answers

19:40 Summation from the Chair

19:45 Close of lecture

The Scruton Lecture is part of ICE’s prestige event series and is held in honour of Christopher ‘Kit’ Scruton, a British industrial dynamics engineer. The topic contributes to ICE's Energy, Resilience and Climate Change campaign.

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Disclaimer: Any views or opinions expressed on any matters by the presenters or participants during or in connection with this presentation are solely the views of the authors of the respective comments and/or opinions and must not be taken to be the views of ICE or any other organisation. ICE makes no representations, warranties or assurances concerning any information provided in these presentations and accepts no responsibility for the content and/or accuracy.


Chris Baker 

John Beswick
Chris Baker is Professor of Environmental Fluid Mechanics in the School of Engineering at the University of Birmingham with wide ranging research interests in the fields of wind engineering, wind/crop interaction, road and rail aerodynamics, pollution dispersion and transport resilience in adverse weather. 

He is currently PI for grants of the order of £2.5million from UK research council, EU and industry sources. He was an undergraduate, postgraduate and Fellow at St Catharine’s College Cambridge, and has worked in the past for British Rail Research and Nottingham University. He was the first secretary of the Wind Engineering Society from 1990 to 1996 and was Chairman of the Society from 1997 to 1999, and was European and African Regional Co-ordinator of the International Association of Wind Engineering from 2005 to 2009.

John Rees (Chair)

John Beswick
John is a Director in COWI's UK bridge division.  He is also a visiting professor at the University of Birmingham where he holds the Honorary Chair in Structural Dynamics in the School of Civil Engineering.

John specialises in the design and assessment of tall guyed masts, lattice towers and other wind sensitive structures.  He is actively involved in the development of Standards that apply to his work.  He is convenor of the CEN Working Group responsible for EN1993-3 and Chairman of the UK's mirror committee.  He is also a member of the project team responsible for updating the wind actions Eurocode, EN1991-1-4.