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Keynote Speakers

Professor John Messner
Charles and Elinor Matts Professor of Architectural Engineering
Pennsylvania State University, USA
Prof. Messner is a Professor of Architectural Engineering at Penn State and leads the Building Energy Informatics area of the Consortium for Building Energy Innovation.  He specializes in Building Information Modelling (BIM) and virtual prototyping research.  As the Director of the Computer Integrated Construction (CIC) Research Program, he led the development of the BIM Planning Guide for Facility Owners, and the previously completed BIM Project Execution Planning Guide. He has received National Science Foundation support to investigate the application of advanced visualization in the AEC Industry and engineering education.    As a part of these grants, he led the development of two Immersive Construction (ICon) Labs, which are large, 3 screen immersive display systems for visualizing design, construction and operations information. He has also led the development of the Virtual Construction Simulator simulation game.  He previously worked as a project manager on various construction projects for a large general contractor and an infrastructure development company.  He has taught courses in virtual prototyping; BIM; strategic management in construction; international construction; and project management at Penn State.
Presentation Synopsis:
Virtual Reality (VR) is certainly not new, but the broad adoption of Building Information Modelling has redefined the value proposition for broad implementation of VR in the Construction Industry.  To date, many implementations of VR have focused on isolated case studies or experimental research implementations.  But this is changing, quickly.  Since Building Information Modelling (BIM) is becoming a standard process for many projects, the content to quickly develop valuable virtual reality experiences for project teams is becoming readily available.  This presentation will explore the current best in class use cases for VR, along with approaches that can be used to define the value proposition.  The future use cases for VR that will have profound impacts on the efficiency and effectiveness for delivering facilities will also be explored.
Dr. Charles Woodward
Research Professor at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Research Professor - Augmented and Virtual Reality.
Research Coordinator - Gratifying User Experience.
Dr. Charles Woodward received his Ph.D. degree in Computer Science at Helsinki University of Technology in 1990, where Woodward and his team pioneered in developing 3D modeling and ray tracing visualisation for industrial designers.  The years 1991-2000 Woodward headed his spin-off company DeskArtes Oy in international software business, with product lines for 3D CAID and Rapid Prototyping. After joining VTT in 2001, Woodward was nominated Research Professor of Multimedia technology in 2004, and Research Professor in Augmented and Virtual Reality 2010. Throughout the last decade, Woodward and his team at VTT have produced world leading solutions for various Augmented Reality (AR) application fields, including  media and marketing, entertainment and games, interior design, industrial applications, and collaborative telepresence interaction. Woodward’s special research focus is on Augmented and Mixed Reality application in the AEC sector (Architecture, Engineering and Construction).
Presentation Synopsis:
Augmented Reality for AEC – Pioneering Works, Past, Present and Future
In his keynote Woodward gives an overview on VTT’s pioneering work in AR applications for the AEC sector since the early 2000’s. Some of their world first applications include: applying mobile AR for architectural visualization; implementing internet AR webcam at construction site; employing Google Earth maps and GPS for mobile AR visualization; combining mobile AR visualization with 4D BIMs at construction site; and employing mobile AR visualization in various real land use cases. Related applications include implementations of augmented scale models, augmented interior design system, visualization of past buildings in historical settings, and mixed reality interaction with virtual worlds. Woodward’s recent research addresses mobile AR and BIM applications for indoors applications such as building maintenance and navigation. Further AR applications and technology are described for markerless feature and point cloud based 3D tracking and photorealistic visualization.
Professor Ghassan Aouad
Vice President for Academic Affairs
Gulf University for Science and Technology, Kuwait
The Chartered Institute of Building
I am currently Vice President for Academic Affairs at Gulf University for Science and Technology and before this I was President of the University of Wollongong Dubai.
Before moving to the Middle East, I was at the University of Salford in the UK. During my 20 years at the University of Salford, I have held several roles, including Pro Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation, Dean of the College of Science & Technology, Dean of the Faculty of Business, Law & the Built Environment, Director of the Research Institute of the Built & Human Environment and Head of School of Construction & Property Management now the School of the Built Environment. I am currently a visiting professor at the University.
I successfully supervised 24 PhD students, externally examined 52 PhD students, authored 3 major research books and co-authored one book, generated more than £10M in research funding as Principal Investigator and £8M as Co-Investigator, published 92 papers in top rated refereed journals, delivered more than 50 keynote speeches and invited lectures, and presented my work in more than 40 countries. I am named as one of the top ten academic leaders shaping executive education in the Middle East by the Middle East Economic Digest.
Presentation Synopsis:
Advanced IT and the readiness of technology in the Gulf region
In this lecture, an overview of advanced IT in construction with particular emphasis on the gulf region will demonstrate that this region is embracing such technologies. The competitiveness of this region through the use of advanced IT such as VR, BIM, etc will be discussed relying heavily on the competitiveness reports of the World Economic Forum published between 2009 and 2014. A series of recommendations will be suggested of how Advanced IT can help in the further improvement of these competitiveness indicators. Some practical examples from previous research will be demonstrated in order to assist the construction industry in the Gulf region benefits from international experiences in the area of technology readiness. This lecture will conclude with a map for the future of advanced IT in construction.
Dr. Rene Schumann
Managing Director, HOCHTIEF ViCon Qatar
Rene Schumann is currently the Managing Director of HOCHTIEF ViCon in Qatar. After finalizing his studies with a degree in Structural Engineering and certification as a Project Manager in Germany, René started his career at HOCHTIEF in 1998. Rene supported HOCHTIEF’s efforts to implement virtual construction techniques, an endeavor which eventually led to the establishment of HOCHTIEF ViCon in 2007. As ViCon’s Head of Operations from day one, he has advised clients throughout the industry. René is one of the original creators of the ViCon Method, and the driving force behind ViCon’s focus on pragmatism and client benefits. In 2009, HOCHTIEF ViCon founded a subsidiary in Qatar, where Rene took on the responsibility of Managing Director. Through his close relationships with the construction community, and work on high profile projects, René has lead the team in Qatar to a prominent position in the Qatari market. Rene is responsible for all international operations of HOCHTIEF ViCon
Professor Osama Moselhi 
Ph.D., P. Eng., Fellow AACE, CSCE and ASCE
Dr. Moselhi is Professor of Engineering in the Department of Building, Civil and Environmental Engineering at Concordia University. He served as Department Chair and Executive Advisor to the Dean of the Faculty on graduate studies and research and on space planning and appraisal of graduate programs. Since joining Concordia in 1985, after a decade of industry experience, Dr. Moselhi supervised and co-supervised over 80 Masters and Ph.D. graduates, authored and co-authored over 350 scientific publications. His industry experience spans tall buildings, bridges, nuclear power plants, harbour and offshore facilities. He is recipient of numerous honors and awards; including the prestigious CSCE Walter Shanly Award in recognition of “outstanding contributions to the development and practice of construction engineering in Canada” and the international Tucker-Hasegawa Award, in recognition of “individuals in industry or academia who have made a major, sustained contribution to the field of Automation and Robotics in Construction". Dr. Moselhi served as international consultant on academic affairs and on construction projects in Canada, USA, and the Middle East. His research interest encompasses planning, procurement, resource allocation, tracking and control of construction projects, with a focus on risk management, productivity analysis, management of construction claims and development of decision support systems embracing information technology, remote sensing, web-enabling and spatial technologies.
Presentation Synopsis:
Visualization of onsite construction progress using remote sensing and BIM
Tracking, trending and progress reporting of onsite construction operations have received considerable attention from practitioners and academics alike ever since the introduction of the earned value management (EVM) method back in 1976 by the United States Department of Defense for progress reporting. The use and applications of this method in management of engineering, procurement and construction projects has been the subject of numerous publications, most notably those produced by the U.S.A. Department of Energy, and National Aeronautics Space Agency and those described in a number of textbooks. This presentation will describe the essential requirement for accurate and reliable utilization of EVM and it will highlight the challenges in its use for reporting periodic progress and for forecasting. The progress made over the last few decades in reporting the estimated earned value, i.e. the budgeted cost of work performed, will be described with a focus on the use of automated site data acquisition technologies for that purpose. This includes the use of global positioning system (GPS), radio-frequency identification (RFIDs), and wireless sensor networks, along with their respective communication protocols. Integrated with these deployed data capturing technologies are BIM (building information modelling) and project schedule to generate 4D dynamic project model that provides useful visualisation capabilities in reporting physical progress onsite. The presentation will also introduce recently developed self-adaptive models and practical guidelines for accurate forecasting of project cost and duration at completion and/or at any given time horizon. Selected set of example project applications will be presented to illustrate the use of the automated site data acquisition technologies described above and to demonstrate the visualisation capabilities achieved using BIM.
Professor R. Raymond Issa
Ph.D., J.D., P.E., F.ASCE, API
is currently the UF Research Foundation and Holland Professor in the University of Florida’s Rinker School of Construction Management and Director of the Center for Advanced Construction Information modeling and the Building Information Modeling (BIM) Visualization Laboratory. Raymond has completed over $7 million in information technology related research and he has served as Chair on over 250 Masters Committees and over 45 Ph.D. Committees, Raymond has also authored over 300 journal and conference proceeding articles and scientific reports.
Raymond has received University, College and School level recognition for excellence in research (UF Research Foundation Professor (2)), teaching, and academic advising (Academic Advisor of the Year; PHD Advisor/Mentor (2)). Raymond also serves on the Board of Directors of various industry and professional organizations, including the National Center for Construction Education and Research and the International Society for Computing in Civil and Building Engineering (ISCCBE). He has served as chair of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Technical Council on Computing and Information Technology and on various other ASCE technical committees. He also serves as an UPADI Vice-President for North America. Raymond was recently awarded the 2012 ASCE Computing in Civil Engineering Award and was elected to the Pan American Engineering Academy. In publications related work, Raymond is currently the Senior Associate Editor of the ASCE Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering and editor of two ASCE monographs Ontology in the AEC domain: A decade of research and developments and Building Information Modeling: Applications and Practices in the AEC Industry.
Presentation Synopsis:
Enhancing spatial and temporal cognitive ability through augmented reality
It is essential to provide the future industry workforce with the education to fully develop their abilities to effectively solve construction problems in order to reach high productivity levels. In particular, the ability of construction engineering and management (CEM) students to solve problems is hindered by the lack of exposure to construction processes on the job-site, which results in their lack of understanding of the dynamic complex spatial constraints (e.g., how construction products are related to one another in particular contextual space) and the temporal constraints (e.g., the dependencies for coordinating subcontractors’ processes). Spatial-temporal-constraint problems pervade projects during the construction phase, students’ full understanding of the construction processes helps them in solving construction management problems and also enables them to significantly improve productivity levels.
This presentation explores how the use of Augmented Reality Technology (ART) in the classroom provides educators with an instructional mechanism to virtually incorporate jobsite visits through the perception of the reality via the combination of two layers (the real environment and computer-generated information). ART enhances the physical, real-world environment through a computer-generated sensory input. For example, ART enables CM students to enhance their perception of the jobsite and, more importantly, it also allows them unlimited access to otherwise limited opportunities to participate in jobsite experiences