Outstanding Research Paper Awards

Posted on Tuesday, June 8th, 2021

The annual awards for the best papers published in the Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers have recognised two streams of Pipebots’ research.  Nicole Metje and Chris Rogers, along with two colleagues from the Mapping and Assessing The Underworld programme, received the ‘James Hill Prize’ for the best paper published in Municipal Engineering. Their paper is entitled ‘Improved Underground Utilities Asset Management – Assessing the impact of the UK Utility Survey Standard (PAS128)’ and provides the latest thinking on buried asset location – a topic on which Pipebots will have much to contribute via its pioneering work in Theme 5.  Read the full paper here: Improved underground utilities asset management – assessing the impact of the UK utility survey standard (PAS128)

Parallel work by Nicole, Chris and Lewis Makana under the Mapping and Assessing The Underworld programme has influenced national thinking on the impact of buried utility strikes: a report and subsequent paper by Lewis, Nicole, Chris and a colleague at Birmingham (Makana et al., 2016, 2020) features as one of few references to university research in the National Infrastructure Strategy (HMT, 2020).

Chris Rogers, along with three colleagues from the Liveable Cities programme, received the ‘Richard Trevithick Fund Prize’ for the best paper published in Engineering Sustainability.  This prize is awarded “to authors from both industry and academia who have produced work judged by their peers to be of exceptional quality and benefit to the civil engineering, construction and materials science community”.  Entitled ‘The Liveable Cities Method: Establishing the Case for Transformative Change for a UK Metro’, the paper describes an application of the methodologies that are being applied in Theme 7 to underpin the development of the business models and business cases for the different versions of the Pipebot family. The paper also pints to the importance of ensuring alignment with the various forms of governance that would influence the efficacy of Pipebots’ implementation.  Read the full paper here: The Liveable Cities Method: establishing the case for transformative change for a UK metro | Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers – Engineering Sustainability (icevirtuallibrary.com)

This award came hard on the heels of an announcement that Chris Rogers’ paper entitled ‘Engineering Sustainable, Resilient and Liveable Cities’, which combines three of the core methodologies embedded in T7’s approach, is one of the top five most downloaded open access papers ever published in the Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers, in spite of it being published later than some of its rivals (see www.icevirtuallibrary.com/page/ice-news/134-best-open-access). The citation states: “This paper is based on data derived from a portfolio of research programmes, the University of Birmingham’s 2014 Future Urban Living report and the findings from the UK government’s Foresight Future of Cities project. It has been cited 29 times since its publication in 2018. It shows how civil engineers can build better cities through a deeper understanding of the future benefits, resilience and value of their proposed urban infrastructure solutions.”  This demonstrates the ability to position Pipebots’ transformative thinking and practices in the wider context of the infrastructure and urban systems landscape.  Read the full paper here: Engineering future liveable, resilient, sustainable cities using foresight.