Prof. Joong HEE LEE
Department of Nano Convergence Engineering,
Department of Polymer-Nano Science and Technology, 
Jeonbuk National University
Hierarchical Nanostructure Materials for High-efficiency and Long Stability Electrodes Towards Overall Water Splitting


The crisis of global energy sources can be solved by future hydrogen (H2) economy due to the easy recyclability and pollution-free nature of hydrogen fuel. To address this purpose, electrochemical water splitting via the use of high-performance electrocatalysts to accelerate both cathodic hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) and anodic oxygen evolution reaction (OER) simultaneously is emerging as a sustainable and robust technology for producing green H2. Over the past decades, state-of-the-art electrocatalysts derived from precious metals, such as Pt/C and IrO2/RuO2, have demonstrated excellent catalytic activities; however, the high cost, scarcity, and insufficient durability, critically limit their widespread industrial use. Therefore, electrocatalysts based on low-cost and abundant transition metals have recently been expected as effective alternatives to overcome abovementioned issues. In this study, a variety of potential engineering approaches for fabricating hierarchical electrochemical materials owning unique structures and physicochemical properties are introduced and then discussed in detail. The formation of novel multiple active nanoarchitectures results in particular synergistic effects that excitingly improve electronic structure, free adsorption energy, number of exposed active sites, charge/mas transfer channels, and electrochemical stability, thus enhancing overall water splitting performance for practical applications. 

Keywords: Hierarchical electromaterials; Electrocatalysts; Green hydrogen gas; Overall water splitting.


Prof Joong Hee Lee is the Distinguish Professor in the Department of Nano Convergence Engineering of Jeonbuk National University in Korea. He received his Ph D. from the University of Minnesota, USA. He was the Vice President of Jeonbukk National University, the President of Korean Society of Composite Materials, and the President of Korean Society of Hydrogen and New Energy. Currently, he is the Fellow of the Korean Academy of Science and Technology and the Fellow of the National Academy of Engineering of Korea. He is also the National Council Member of Hydrogen Economy of Korea. He has worked on the Functional Nanocomposites, especially nanocatalysts for water splitting and published more than 430 SCI papers with an h-index of 85.

Multi-Agents systems :  considerations for a systemic approach to Artificial Intelligence.


Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a powerfull asset for economic, industrial and societal development. As a digital figurehead, AI plays a keyrole to enforce sovereignty in nations. Many countries have adopted national AI strategies to remain front runners in the digital world and knowledge driven society. In order to implement and deploy these strategies, colossal invesments needed to be set in place. The eagerness for AI has impacted several critical areas of nations  such as civil and military sectors because AI input in terms of logistical, operational and strategic superiority proved to be outsanding.

In this presentation, we will present the foundations and challenges of "classic" AI, distributed AI and collective AI, then we will focus on multi-agent systems as a premium choice paradigm for understanding the complexity of real systems.

Many case studies from our research work will be presented to support our vision. We will also outline recent regulations related to AI and data governance as proposed by the European Commission and UNESCO.


Pr. Amal El Fallah Seghrouchni is the head director of the International Center for Artificial Intelligence of Morocco, the AI movement carried by the Mohammed 6 Polytechnic University in Rabat. She is also a distinguished research fellow at the Sorbonne University, at the Faculty of Science and Engineering, in Paris. Within Sorbonne University, she is a member of the executive committee of SCAI (Sorbonne Center of Artificial Intelligence) and currently holds the industrial chair of excellence funded by Thales at SCAI-Abu-Dhabi. Pr. Amal El Fallah Seghrouchni holds a doctorate in computer science from Pierre and Marie Curie University (Paris 6) and an Habilitation to Direct Research (HDR) in the field of Artificial Intelligence (Sorbonne Paris Nord ). A world expert in Distributed Artificial Intelligence and Multi-Agent Systems, she is internationally recognized for her work in this field, and was elected General Chair of the best international conference in the field (AAMAS 2020, Auckland – New Zealand). She has initiated numerous research projects and scientific events in this field and has developed very strong international collaborations with the NII in Tokyo in Japan, LANIA and the University of Veracruz in Mexico, PUC RIO and the University of São Paulo in Brazil, the Politehnica University in Bucharest in Romania, and several other universities and laboratories in Europe (Italy, Germany, Netherlands, etc.). Her industrial collaborations are very strong and she has been Expert at Thales Airborne Systems since 2000.

Member of three doctoral schools, she has supervised 35 University Doctorates successfully defended at Paris Dauphine University, Sorbonne University or Sorbonne Paris Nord. She has published 17 books including international conference proceedings, over 200 papers in major AI and SMA conferences, as well as numerous book chapters and international journal articles. Within LIP6 – UMR CNRS 7606, she founded the SMA team and led it from 2006 to 2021. She co-led the Artificial Intelligence and Data Sciences research axis from its creation at LIP6 until end of 2021. This axis still brings together 14 research teams and more than 120 permanent staff. She also assumes many scientific responsibilities such as chairing program committees, evaluating international projects and coordinating prospective studies for prestigious organizations; she sits on numerous international boards such as the IFAAMAS board of directors; she was associate editor of the prestigious journal IEEE Transactions on Artificial Intelligence, TAI, etc. Finally, Prof. Amal El Fallah Seghrouchni is a member of the prestigious UNESCO World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology (COMEST). She is interested in the ethical questions of new fields of scientific and technological research such as Artificial Intelligence, Data Science, the Internet of Things, Robotics, etc. She is passionate about social issues relating to issues of ethics, gender, inclusion and social justice and was nominated for the Berkeley World Business Analytics Awards, in the category "Woman of the Year".

Civil Engineering Department at Pontificia,
Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio),Brazil
Non-Conventional Materials and Technologies: Tools for Sustainability


The understanding of sustainability in building construction has undergone changes over the years. First attention of specialists was directed towards the topic of limited resources, especially energy, and its impact on the natural environment. Now emphasis is placed on technical issues such as materials, building components, construction technologies and energy-related design concepts as well as on non-technical issues such as economic and social sustainability. The pursuit of sustainable development as defined in the Gro Harlem Brundtland Report (United Nations, 1987) as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” has become a major issue when trying to meet the challenge of providing proper housing for an increasing world population. 

To increase understanding of sustainable materials, also known as Non-Conventional Materials and Technologies (NOCMAT) using organic materials, which are used either alone or as reinforcement in different types of matrices such as soil, cement and polymers, many research programs have been carried out all over the globe. In recent years, there has been an increase in research into the use of natural and non-conventional construction materials, which have suitable physical and mechanical properties for structural applications and are desirable as ecological alternatives to more commonly used industrialized materials. The study of NOCMAT for construction began in the 1970’s. This field of research has continued to grow in the decades since. The increased use of locally available natural and waste materials in construction can promote environmental sustainability and aid in the eradication of extreme poverty. Many of the world’s most poverty-stricken people live in remote locations, typically rich in natural resources. In many of these areas, the use of steel and reinforced concrete in construction has become a symbol of economic status.  These materials are imported for use when local natural materials can also be used to create structures that can successfully meet the intended need at a lower cost and environmental impact (considering precautions are taken to prevent deforestation or depletion of other resources).

Now, with energy consumption and sustainability becoming increasingly important issues in the construction industry, industrialized materials are not always optimal when there are many natural materials that have excellent structural properties, are renewable, and require minimal energy input to be construction-ready. Therefore, as the progress of the civil engineering industry relies on the continued development of different materials in construction, NOCMAT should be considered in the search for the low-energy structural materials of the future


Khosrow Ghavami is Emeritus Professor of the Civil Engineering Department at Pontificia,. Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio), visiting senior research scientist at FZEA/USP Sao Paulo, Research Fellow of the National Council of Research (CNPq Level, 1A highest level since 1978) and Scientist of our State, (FAPERJ) Brazil, Honorary Professor and Doctor at the Federal University of Paraiba (UFPB). He is the Founding Member, Chairman of the International Committee on Non-conventional Materials and Technologies, (IC-NOCMAT since 1984), of "Brazilian Association of Non-conventional Materials and Technologies (ABMTENC)", Fellow of American Society of Civil Engineers (F.ASCE), Member of Brazilian Institute of Concrete (IBRACON), Gesellschaft fuer Angewandte Mathematic and Mechanics (GAMM until 2000) and American Mathematical Society (until 2003). Emeritus member of Brazilian Association of Mechanical Sciences, (ABCM). He acted as consultant and coordinator of various national and international projects. He is collaborating with UFPB, University of Sao Paulo (USP), University of Campina Grande (UFCG), CEFET of Minas Gerais, ENTPE-France, Princeton University, University of Tanzania, Witswatersrand University, etc. Research Fellow - Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine until 1978, and since 2003 is visiting Research Fellow at Princeton University. He is member of the Editorial Board of Journals: Green Materials, Structures and Building, published by the Institution of Civil Engineers, England. Thin-Walled Structures, Journal of Constructional Steel Research (until 2005) and Cement & Concrete Composites (until 2012) - all published by Elsevier. Engineering Structures & Technologies, published by Taylor Francis and Vilnius Gedimino Technical University. Asian Journal of Civil Engineering (Iran), Brazilian Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Engineering among others. He has experience in Civil Engineering, with emphasis on Structural Engineering and non-conventional Materials and Technologies (NOCMAT). His continuing research on bamboo and integrated composites reinforced with vegetable fibers and bamboo started in 1979, developing structural elements using recently developed materials. He has been carrying out research programs considering the theoretical and experimental analysis of Plates and Shells. He has been founding member of the committee of the ISO norm for Bamboo Structures besides being the founding member of INBAR (International Network for Bamboo and Rattan). He has edited and co-edited 15 books besides 11 book chapters. Dr. Ghavami presented more than 35 invited Keynote lectures in four continents of the globe. He has supervised more than 80 Master and Ph.D., thesis besides being organizer and co-organizer of many International conferences. He is the author and co-author of more than two hundred and forty technical papers. He received his Ph.D. and DIC. from Imperial College of Science and Technology, University of London, and B.Sc.(with First Class Honors) and M.Sc.(with distinction) from Drudjbi Narodov University, Moscow-Russia.

University of Teramo, Italy
Evolutionary Computing techniques for Federated Learning


Artificial Neural Networks (ANN) are currently among the most used artificial intelligence techniques. Generally, ANN have fully-connected neurons which contain the weighted connections. The huge number of connections among neurons leads to high network complexity. Therefore, the network size is severly limited by computational limitations. A challenging problem is to replace fully-connected bipartite layers with sparse layers. In order to do this, some Sparse Evolutionary Training (SET) algorithms were designed. The idea is to assume the weighted connection of network as an agent which naturally evolves over time. This neural-evolutionary matching is exploited by a particular machine learning technique called Federated Learning (FL). FL is used to prevent the leakage of private information. This technique trains an algorithm across multiple decentralized edge devices holding local data samples. To optimize an ANN architecture in FL,  suitable multi-objective evolutionary algorithms can be designed. The algorithms have the task of simultaneously minimizing the communication costs and the global test errors. The speech will illustrate the suitable combination between machine learning and evolutionary computing for optimizing the training of neural networks in FL.


Danilo Pelusi received the degree in Physics from the University of Bologna (Italy) and the Ph.D. degree in Computational Astrophysics from the University of Teramo (Italy). Currently, he is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at the Department of Communication Sciences, University of Teramo. Editor of Springer and Elsevier books and Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Emerging Topics in Computational Intelligence (2017-2020), IEEE Access (2018-present) and IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems (2022-present), he is Guest Editor for Elsevier, Springer, MDPI and Hindawi journals. Keynote speaker, Guest of Honor and Chair of IEEE conferences, he is inventor of patents on Artificial Intelligence. His research interests include Fuzzy Logic, Neural Networks, Information Theory, Machine Learning and Evolutionary Algorithms.

Rajan Sen
University of South Florida, USA
 Beyond codes : Enhancing Infrastructure resilience through creative design


An unprecedented world-wide surge in urban populations has led to the creation of megacities characterized by uncontrolled growth, changes in land use and environmental degradation. The resulting vulnerability of urban infrastructure is exacerbated by the continuing threat of climate change. Design is based on worst case scenarios incorporated in codes. These requirements derived from historical records of catastrophic events are now becoming increasingly obsolete. Evidence of this is found in escalating global incidences of severe storms, record high temperatures, raging forest fires and floods alternating with drought exposing critical infrastructure to large scale damage. With our current inability to correctly design or predict these significant impacts on our changing environment, there is an urgent need to explore creative and affordable alternatives. 

This paper profiles creative design ideas developed in US and elsewhere to counter intense environmental hazards against existing infrastructure. They reflect a change in mindset, relying more on engineering insight, effective policies, smart technologies and new materials rather than mere code compliance. The goal is to restore functionality of disaster prone critical infrastructures with minimal disruption to the populace. Awareness, analyses and application of the varied approaches used can assist licensed design professionals and policy makers to make better informed decisions for building stronger, more  resilient communities.


Rajan Sen PhD PE is Fellow ACI / ASCE and Professor Emeritus at USF where he held the Inaugural Samuel & Julia Flom Chair and joint appointments in schools of Architecture and Engineering. He attended IIT KGP and holds graduate degrees from UBC Vancouver and  SUNY Buffalo. He served as Jefferson Science Fellow/Senior Advisor at the US Department of State, Washington DC and as Distinguished Faculty Fellow at the US Office of Naval Research, Bethesda, MD. He is currently in ACI 440 and on the Editorial Board of ASCE Journal of Composites. A past member of TRB AFF80 and RILEM FRP committees, he chaired FRPRCS 11 and is on the Advisory Board of the FRP Institute, India. He has authored over 200 scientific papers, several book chapters, edited two books, holds 3 patents, and lectured at conferences worldwide. His last keynote presentation was on Materials Science and Engineering Nanotechnology in Frankfurt Germany 2019. Prior to joining USF, he worked on the development of the Limit State Bridge Code at the Bridges Engineering Standards Division, Department of Transport, London UK. 

Deputy Head of the department of civil engineering 
Karadeniz Technical University (KTU),
Trabzon, Turkey
Identification and damage detection in civil  engineering structures


In engineering structures, damage occurs due to workmanship errors and environmental effects during the construction phase. These damage situations reduce the performance of the relevant structure and cause unexpected destructive results in case of earthquake or any dynamic force. It is necessary to allocate huge financial resources for the damaged structures to be reused through repair-strengthening works and for the rebuilding of the destroyed structures. In order to reduce these costs, it is necessary to monitor the structural behavior of the structures using experimental methods and take appropriate measures when necessary. Structural Health Monitoring is a method based on the principle of continuous monitoring and control of structures with experimental methods, and determination of damage by taking into account the changes that may occur. Damage detection studies can be done based on analytical, numerical and experimental methods. In studies based on analytical models, whether there is damage and if there is damage, the determination of the damage location is carried out using exact solutions. In numerical methods based on the finite element method, the damage status and severity can be approximated from the changes in dynamic characteristics depending on different damage situations. Experimental methods, on the other hand, give the most realistic results in determining the current behavior since they are directly applied on the structures. Damage detection studies can be summarized in three steps: presence, location and severity of damage. The dynamic characteristics obtained for damaged and undamaged conditions are compared with each other and evaluations can be made about the determined frequency values ​​and mode shapes, and damage states and locations. The decrease in the experimentally obtained frequency values ​​of the existing structure may be an indication of the presence of damage. In the determination of the damage location, the analytical expressions of the changes in the modal movement points, taking into account the mode shapes of the structures, give effective results. The severity of the damage directly affects the frequency and mode shapes and reduces the rigidity of the structure. Damage detection methods based on ambient vibrations are very effective in determining the location and severity of the damage.

Keynotes : Ambient vibration test, Damage detection, Dynamic characteristics, Experimental modal analysis, Structural health monitoring.


Dr. Altunışık is Professor and the Deputy Head of the department of civil engineering at the Karadeniz Technical University (KTU), Trabzon, Turkey.  He is a leading authority of earthquake engineering, structural health monitoring and remote sensing as well as sustainable and advanced materials.  He has authored four books, one book chapter, and participated as a member of five international congress organizing committees.  Dr. Altunışık published a total of 212 peer-reviewed scientific publications, 150 of which are SCI/SCIE, 130 national/international papers, 2,914 international citations (h-index=31, i-index=111). Professor Altunışık received numerous prestigious awards including the "Young Scientist of the Year" and "Scientist of the Year" awards at KTU in 2015-2020. He was deemed worthy of the international "Excellence in Research" award in 2016, the "TUBA-The Young Scientists Award" in 2020 and the "ODTU Mustafa Parlar Research Encouragement Award". Also, he won the first prize in many competitions with student groups between 2009-2018. Having worked in many research projects, Altunışık also held various administrative positions at KTU.

Information and Computing Technology (ICT) Division, College of Science and Engineering, Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU), Qatar

Human-Centric Robust ML-Driven IoT for Livable Communities 


The fast deployment of sensors, actuators, and smart objects in the Internet of Things (IoTs) allows for the creation of new smart services through a fine-grained data acquisition process. These smart services, apart from their various reported benefits, open the potential for abuse and poses privacy risks. For instance, personal intimate data can be used by anti-social elements without the informed consent of the individuals for malicious purposes—with users not even knowing about the presence and capabilities of deployed smart devices and what data related to them is being captured. In addition, many of the IoT smart services leverage Machine Learning (ML) techniques (for tasks such as voice/speech recognition; face recognition; crime prediction). Unfortunately, such ML models have been shown to be vulnerable to adversarial attacks, which are carefully crafted examples that have been created to fool an ML model. This talk focuses on the urgent need of the times to carefully evaluate and address the risks of ML-driven IoTs for smart services before the wide adoption of the technology and to propose pro-social responsible solutions for ML-driven IoTs.


Prof. Ala Al-Fuqaha is currently serving as the Associate Provost for Teaching and Learning at Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU). He joined HBKU in 2018 as Professor at the Information and Computing Technology (ICT) division of the College of Science and Engineering (CSE). Before HBKU, he was Professor and director of the NEST research lab at the Computer Science department of Western Michigan University. In 2014, Prof. Al-Fuqaha was the recipient of the outstanding researcher award at the college of Engineering and Applied Sciences of Western Michigan University. In 2018, he received the Best Survey Award from the IEEE Communications Society. In 2006, he was the recipient of the outstanding new educator award at the college of Engineering and Applied Sciences of Western Michigan University.

Sebastien ROY
Professor of Electrical Engineering
Sherbrooke University, CANADA

Tomorrow’s Digital Planet: Reliability, Security and Self-Organization in Next Generation Networks


We live in a worldwide, increasingly pervasive digital fabric comprised of all manners of computing nodes and the communication networks that link them together (Internet, Internet-of-Things, etc.). While large networks traditionally had a top-down structure with services being provided by centralized servers firmly under the operator’s control, this paradigm is rapidly becoming obsolete. The rapid proliferation of connected devices, the displacement of computing resources towards the network edge, and an increasingly crowded, unpredictable and unstructured  wireless propagation environment contribute to an emerging paradigm for the global digital fabric which is much more eclectic and ad hoc in nature. In this context, a reliable top-down hierarchy may not be available, or if it is available, the delay in propagating all the relevant information upwards to a central node for processing will be considered excessive in many cases. Network responsiveness requires that most major functions be managed through simple local interactions at the edge, based on self-organization principles and engineered emergent behavior. The theory of complex systems teaches us that large networks can have unintended emergent behaviors of surprising sophistication that stem from simple local actions. The challenge here is to turn this on its head and design local interactions that will result in a desirable global emergent behavior. In the case of network resource allocation, this would entail arriving at a global solution that is close to optimal without ever gathering all the information at one central decision point. The design of self-organizing systems in this manner is challenging, because the relationship between local rules and the resulting global behavior is poorly understood. However, such systems are known to possess desirable organic properties, such as great adaptibility to unforeseen circumstances, fault tolerance, and scalability. In this type of network, cybersecurity functions (authentication, privacy, and integrity) must also be dealt with in an amorphous manner based on local interactions. A « mesh » of trust must thus be constructed through some form of consensus if reliance on a centralized authority is to be minimized.


Pr Sebastien Roy (M’00) received the B.Sc.A. and M.Sc. degrees in electrical engineering from Université Laval, Québec, QC, Canada, in 1991 and 1993, respectively, and the Ph. D. degree from Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada in 2000.  From 2000 to 2002, he was a National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Postdoctoral Fellow at Université Laval. In 2007, 2009, 2011, and 2018, he was invited professor with École Nationale Supérieure de Sciences Appliquées et de Technologie (ENSSAT), Lannion, France. In 2015, he was invited professor with Institut National de Sciences Appliquées (INSA), Rennes, France. From 2002 to 2012, he was sucessively Assistant, Associate (from 2005), and Full Professor (from 2010) at Université Laval. In 2012, he joined the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, QC, where he is currently Full Professor, was Department Chair from 2016 to 2017, and where he is working on system-oriented and implementation aspects of digital intelligence, signal processing, advanced wireless communications, and cybersecurity. He is co-founder and co-leader of Université de Sherbrooke’s Center of Excellence in Integrated Intelligent Systems (CESIIUS). He is also a co-founder of the Digital Distributed Intelligence Network (D2IN), a multi-university consortium currently being established in Quebec with funding from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation. 

Dr. Roy is active in industrial consulting and was involved in the organization of several international conferences. He is also recipient of multiple teaching, research, and technology transfer awards.

Calgary University, Canada
Merging Ultra High-Performance Concrete with Modular Construction- A New Approach 


Social circumstances such as health, education, job, income, and community influence the well-being of all people. Housing is the base foundation for promoting healthy families and communities. People living in Canada's Northern territories (the Northwest Territories, the Yukon and Nunavut) face many health cares, housing, education, and poverty challenges. The shortage and inadequate, overcrowded housing conditions in Canada's Northern Territories have lately gained attention since little progress has been achieved in improving housing for this community. The protracted housing crisis has contributed to a high frequency of respiratory illness among northerners, compounding other socioeconomic determinants of health. Many units were built using low-cost materials unsuitable for northern winter temperatures and were not designed with harsh climatic concerns in mind. Then, the issues related to the housing quality, which, when existing with extreme temperature, results in high humidity levels and mould-infested residences. The challenges abound further due to the harsh climate in which the temperature rises above the freezing point only from July to October. Such extreme weather obstructs the on-site construction of houses to be limited to a few months. And through it all, the difficulties in transporting materials to rural areas where materials are transported once or twice per year through barge or frosted road exacerbated the challenges of building and repairing houses in Northern Canada. With so many people living in deteriorating houses and experiencing long wait times for housing, rising heating and maintenance expenses, and overcrowding houses, immediate action is required.

The modular housing construction technique is proposed to overcome the challenges facing the Northern Territories. Modular construction in Canada has become increasingly popular, particularly in rural and undeveloped regions. It gained considerable attention from the construction industry over the last decade due to its positive impact on project constraints, safety, and prevention of construction restrictions and demolition waste. Beyond quality management and improved completion time, modular construction offers numerous other benefits to stakeholders. The major advantage of modular construction includes faster construction processes, better quality, more precise and predictable completion time, less on-site labour, less material waste and less environmental sensitivity. In addition, one key aspect of modern construction is increasing sustainability, which reduces the building sector's economic, environmental, and social implications. Therefore, incorporating sustainable and eco-friendly Ultra-High-Performance Fibre Reinforced Concrete (UHPFRC) further maximizes the modular design benefits. Taking advantage of the UHPFRC produces modular houses with thin structural elements, including walls, floors and roofs. Thus, UHPFRC facilitates the rapid construction of the precast structural elements resulting in lighter, durable, high-strength modular units that can withstand the harsh environment and expected structural loads. Constructing long-lasting UHPFRC modular houses is considered an innovative and effective way to combine high-performance material with exceptional properties and features for sustainability, fast construction, and practical application. Therefore, the impact of constructing modular houses using UHPFRC will have the potential for lasting social, economic, and environmental benefits for Canada. 

Producing UHPFRC precast elements pushes the boundary to think of a new and innovative way to alter the construction process using prefabricating modular houses to save people suffering from health and social problems directly related to the housing crisis in Northern Canada. To achieve this, understanding the factors influencing the building sector's economic, environmental, and social implications is crucial. Thus, this paper provides a comprehensive critical literature assessment of modular construction's benefits and structural performance using UHPFRC. Lastly, future research must achieve sustainable and robust modular buildings. Modular Housing using UHPFRC is the future construction system to be implemented in the Northern Territories in Canada and other regions facing construction challenges.


Raafat El-Hacha, is a Professor of Structural Engineering at the University of Calgary in the Department of Civil Engineering, Canada. Received his Ph.D. degree from Queen’s University, Canada, in 2000. Dr. El-Hacha’s pioneer research has been recognized as pushing the boundary of knowledge in using innovative and smart advanced materials for strengthening structures and new construction, such as fibre-reinforced polymers, shape memory alloy and ultra-high performance concrete for hybrid structural systems in bridge applications and other structures. He published over 250 journal and conference papers and co-authored three refereed design guidelines. Supervised and graduated 50 Ph.D. and MSc students. Served as guest editor for three journals and edited/co-edited eight conference proceedings. Serving as a member of the Task Group of the Fibre Reinforced Structures Technical Subcommittee of the Canadian Highway Bridge Design Code, chairing the CSCE Committee on Advanced Composite Materials for Bridges and Structures, and chairing the ACI 440-I sub-committee on “FRP - Prestressed Concrete”. Chaired the world-leading conferences in the areas of Advanced Composite Materials and Fiber Reinforced Polymer, including the 13th International Symposium on Fiber Reinforced Polymers for Reinforced Concrete Structures (FRPRCS-13), USA, 2017; the 7th International Conference on Advanced Composite Materials in Bridges and Structures, (ACMBS-VII), Canada, 2016; the 7th International Conference on FRP Composites in Civil Engineering, (CICE 2014), Canada, 2014. Chaired the 1st, 2nd, and 4th CSCE Specialty Conference on Disaster Mitigation and was the founder of this series of conferences, and served as the secretary of the CSCE 2006 Annual Conference. Chairing the CSCE Technical Committee on Advanced Composite Materials for Bridges and Structures. Served as the secretary of the International Institute for FRP in Construction (IIFC) and currently serving as the treasurer.

Dr. El-Hacha is a Fellow of the International Institute for FRP in Construction (IIFC), the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers (CSCE), the American Concrete Institute (ACI), and the Engineering Institute of Canada (EIC). In addition, he received several awards and fellowships, including the CSCE Casimir Gzowski Gold Medal Award, CSCE Excellence in Innovation in Civil Engineering Award, IIFC President’s Award, Killam Professorship Award, Erasmus Mundus International Fellowship and many others for his outstanding academic and professional achievements.

Hanaa H. REZK
Vice President, Smith MacCoy & Associates, USA
PEOPLE SERVING HUMANITIES: A Roadmap towards Sustainable Communities


Many countries are facing a critical situation when it comes to developing agricultural, food security, housing, educational, and infrastructure systems for low-income and poor citizens. Achieving a sustainable living standard, as well as a higher quality of life (QOL) is beyond the usual scope of free market-driven economic systems.

The lecture proposes a strategy aims at establishing eco-communities in different nations.  This strategy focuses on a housing-first approach to reduce homelessness and poverty, recognizing that housing stability is essential for self-sufficiency and full societal participation. Rather than providing only housing for low-income people, the proposed concept seeks to integrate into the process the involvement of the people in designing, constructing, and maintaining an infrastructure.  In this lecture, a recent case study of building ten sustainable and affordable houses, by volunteers, in one day for needy people in Sonora, North Mexico, will be described in details.


Dr. Rezk is the co-founder and vice president of Education and Training of Smith MacCoy & Associates.  For the past fifteen years or so, Dr. Rezk has played a leading role for developing innovative strategies for education and training programs at both the school and professional levels. She has also served as the director of training at Alpha Star Corps among other major companies such as Enbuil Ltd., Hong Kong, Sigma Composites, USA, and InsuMore, Egypt.

In the last few years, Dr. Rezk detected the bulk of her effort towards establishing strategies to assist people-in-need to gain their position in the society through housing, education and job creations.  With her unique multi-discipline expertise in business administration, education, and medical fields enabled her to work with both private sector and NGO’s for developing and executing effective models for eco-communities at different parts of the world.



Pr. Brahim El Bhiri
Angles Rues Zerhoun, Ejoukak and Ait Brahim
Souissi, Rabat, Morocco


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