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Five Futures: Strategies for Shaping our Built Environment

John A. Blume Distinguished Lecture
Craig Schwitter, PE
Principal, BuroHappold Engineering
Monday, February 22, 2021 - 11:30 am
Zoom Webinar

2020 was a remarkable and challenging year. While we struggle with the daily ravages of Covid-19, accelerated change marches ahead in the construction industry and the built environment at large. What do civil, structural, and environmental engineers need to look forward to in solving problems for tomorrow? Five futures are presented that represent key projects addressing societal, technological, and climate challenges in the coming decades. From adaptable systems to climate positive solutions, from computational and AI-assisted leverage to re-evaluating and re-valuing our historic built fabric surrounding us. It all leads to a future where a resilient, efficient, and elegant built environment will be critical to improving our urban/rural conditions and satisfying the most important stakeholder of all: you.


Craig Schwitter (PE) is a partner and founder of the first North American office of Buro Happold Engineers. He is a champion of integrated engineering and the appropriate use of technology, which allows his projects to be flexible, efficient, and engaging. Focused on creating innovative structures for the built environment, Craig has led the successful delivery of many iconic projects that have transformed cities throughout the world, including the Jewel at Changi Airport, London’s Millennium Dome, the New York City High Line, Atlanta’s Mercedes Benz Stadium, and Harvard University’s Science and Engineering Complex. His portfolio of signature engineering projects spans across sectors – from cultural, higher education, and civic developments to transportation, stadia, and master planning initiatives. Recognized as a pioneering thought leader, Craig is an Associate Professor of Professional Practice at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation has served on the board of numerous non-profit organizations and advisory groups.