Message from the Scientific Committee


          Bert H.H. Snijder                                Bart De Pauw


The Scientific Committee of the IABSE Congress Ghent 2021 in Belgium invites the structural engineering community to attend the IABSE Congress Ghent 2021 to discuss and contribute to the theme ‘Structural Engineering for Future Societal Needs’. Future societal needs comprise building and maintaining safe and reliable buildings and infrastructures while coping with the effects of climate change in a world with scarcer resources and satisfying the ambition to reduce mankind’s CO2 footprint. Anticipated sub-themes are therefore amongst others ‘Structural safety and reliability with respect to climate change’ and ‘Circularity, re-use and sustainability of structures’.


The congress will take place irrespective of the situation with the Covid-19 pandemic. To guarantee this, the congress is developed in a hybrid form, meaning with some parts onsite and some parts online, depending on the situation at the time of the congress in September 2021. All written papers submitted are peer-reviewed by the Scientific Committee. All papers are presented orally. This can be in a presentation which is onsite as usual, or online and live, or online and pre-recorded. The online pre-recorded presentations are meant for those participants staying at home and who have to cope with a substantial time difference with Ghent, Belgium. It is the intention to have live streaming of all sessions. Apart from normal parallel sessions, we will have discussion sessions, a Pecha Kucha session and special sessions. In order to accommodate all sessions and speakers, parallel sessions run simultaneously online and onsite in 6 to 8 breakout rooms on the three main congress days. Keynote speakers introduce relevant topics to the congress theme and/or give a state-of-the-art overview on these topics.


The technical programme will attract all those involved and interested in the state of the art and the future of bridge and structural engineering. We invite you to contribute to this IABSE Congress and join us in Ghent in 2021 or online!

Bert H.H. Snijder, Scientific Committee Chair, The Netherlands
Bart De Pauw, Scientific Committee Vice-Chair, Belgium



About the Scientific Committee

The Scientific Committee (SC) is chaired by Prof. H.H. Snijder, Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands. The SC consists of more than 70 expert members from all over the world and is elected by the Technidal Committee of IABSE, chaired by Prof. Daia Zwicky, Fribourg University of Applied Sciences.


To contact the Scientific Committee (SC) , please send an email to:

Important Dates

Extended: Deadline for abstract submission  (closed)

4 November 2020 


Notification Abstract Acceptance

15 December 2020 (only 2 abstracts per registered author will be accepted)


Deadline full paper submission

29 January 2021


Final Invitation, Registration opens

1 March 2021


Notification of Acceptance of Full Papers abd Announcement of Presentation types:

30 April 2021


Registration deadline for all presenting authors

15 June 2021


Deadline for Early-bird registration

15 June 2021


Deadline pre-recorded presentations

1 September 2021


IABSE Annual Meetings

20-21 September 2021


IABSE Congress Ghent 2021

22-24 September 2021



Abstract Submission is now closed.


For Authors: Download the Template for Full Paper here..



Themes and Topics

Anticipated sub-themes are amongst others:

  • Structural safety and reliability with respect to climate change
  • Circularity, re-use and sustainability of structures
  • Emission free building of structures


Special sub-themes are:

  • Enhancing resilience of civil infrastructure to hurricane and thunderstorm hazards under changing climate
  • Structural bearings and anti-seismic devices: innovation, standards and testing requirements
  • Towards extending the service life of existing concrete infrastructure through advanced assessment methods
  • Concepts and methods for the performance assessment of existing structures.

Also more traditional sub-themes may be addressed, if the abstract and paper refer to the main congress theme, e.g.:

  • All types of bridges
  • Large span structures
  • Light-weight structures
  • High-rise buildings
  • All structural materials
  • Structural health monitoring
  • Design for earthquakes
  • Case studies
  • Failures and forensic engineering
  • Strengthening and retrofitting
  • Dynamics of structures
  • Innovative structures
  • Fatigue and fracture
  • Structural analysis and optimisation
  • Parametric design
  • Structural behaviour under fire conditions
  • Soil-structure Interaction
  • Exceptional loads on structures
  • Safety, reliability and risk
  • Architecture of structures
  • Additive manufacturing

Technical Programme

The large majority of the presentations will be delivered orally in normal presentation sessions, but also poster sessions, poster ‘elevator pitch’ sessions, discussion sessions, a Pecha Kucha session and special sessions will take place. In order to accommodate all sessions and speakers, parallel sessions run simultaneously in 6 to 8 breakout rooms on the three main congress days. Keynote speakers introduce relevant topics to the congress theme and/or give a state-of-the-art overview on these topics.



Young Engineers Programme

All participants born in or after 1987 will benefit from a reduction in their registration fee. In addition, any main author born in or after 1987, who personally presents his or her own paper at the Congress, will be considered for additional recognition. An independent jury will select two contributions from young authors-oral or poster- and each will receive a prize of 2,000 CHF. The prizes are offered by the IABSE Fellows and the Organising Committee and will be presented at the Closing Ceremony of the Congress.

On September 22, 2021, an evening networking event will be organised to promote the interaction of Young Engineers with IABSE Fellows and Congress attendees.



Technical Visits

Technical Visits to interesting projects and to research facilities guided by local engineers are planned during the Congress. Visits will also be open to accompanying persons. More detailed information will be available in the Final Invitation and on the Congress website.



Scientific Committee

(Contact: ​)



Bert Snijder, The Netherlands, (Chair)
Bart De Pauw, Belgium, (Vice-Chair)
Ane de Boer, The Netherlands

Vincent de Ville de Goyet, Belgium

Pierre Mengeot, Belgium

Sander van Alphen, The Netherlands
Philippe Van Bogaert, Belgium



Anthony Abu, New Zealand

Mitsuyoshi Akiyama, Japan

Charles-Darwin Annan, Canada

Mourad Bakhoum, Egypt

F. Michael Bartlett, Canada

Corneliu Bob, Romania

Stathis Bousias, Greece

Mikael W. Braestrup, Denmark

Bruno Briseghella, China

Eugen Brühwiler, Switzerland

Marcin Bulkowski, Germany

Elsa Caetano, Portugal

José Matos, Portugal

Alp Caner, Turkey

Colin Caprani, Australia

Robby Caspeele, Belgium

Peter Collin, Sweden

Christian Cremona, France

Hans De Backer, Belgium

Hervé Degée, Belgium

Salvatore DiBernardo, USA

Stephanos Dritsos, Greece

Eleftheria (Elina) Efthymiou, USA

Luigi Fenu, Italy

Ian Firth, UK

Yozo Fujino, Japan

Markus Gabler, Germany

J. Ramon Gaxiola-Camacho, Mexico

Yaojun Ge, China

Christos Giarlelis, Greece

Bruno Godart, France

Rade Hajdin, Switzerland

Bert Hesselink, Netherlands

Stephen J. Hicks, UK

Niels Peter Hoj, Switzerland

Dongzhou Huang, USA

Naeem Hussain, Hong Kong

Svein Erik Jakobsen, Norway

Vesa Järvinen, Finland

Konstantinos Kalfas, Greece

Igor Kavrakov, Germany

Ho-Kyung Kim, Korea

Markus Knobloch, Germany

Hyun-Moo Koh, Korea

Ulrike Kuhlmann, Germany

Andreas Lampropoulos, UK

Guy L. Larose, Canada













Roberto Leon, USA

Heikki Lilja, Finland

Geert Lombaert, Belgium

Jose Antonio Lozano Galant, Spain

Adam Lubell, Canada

Fernando Madrazo-Aguirre, UK

Sébastien Maheux, Canada

Ana Mandić Ivanković, Croatia

Ainhoa Marin Camero, Spain

Philippe Menétrey, Switzerland

Serge Montens, France
Monica Nicoreac, The Netherlands

Alain Nussbaumer, Switzerland

Luís Oliveira-Santos, Portugal

André Orcesi, France

Pedro Pacheco, Portugal

Alessandro Palermo, New Zealand

Fabrizio Palmisano, Italy

José Oliveira Pedro, Portugal

Marion Rauch, Germany

António Reis, Portugal

Kristel Reynaert, Belgium

Jose Romo Martin, Spain

Laurent Rus Jenni, Spain

Kristian Schellenberg ,S witzerland

Mike Schlaich, Germany

Ann Schumacher, Switzerland

Peter Seitz, Germany

Hélder Sousa, Portugal

Alfred Strauss, Austria

Richard Stroetmann, Germany

Harshavardhan Subbarao, India

Karel Terwel, Netherlands

Joseph F. Tortorella, USA

Ourania Tsioulou, UK

Brian Uy, Australia

Matias A. Valenzuela, Chile

Tina Vejrum, Denmark

Rob Vergoossen, Netherlands

Thomas Vogel, Switzerland

Jan Wium, South Africa

Ye Xia, China

Dong Xu, China

Takashi Yamaguchi, Japan

Daia Zwicky, Switzerland