Digital engineering

It has never been more important for structural engineers to be competent in the use of digital tools and demonstrate an awareness of the potential risks and opportunities digital systems can bring.

The influence of the digital world is increasing its impact on those involved with the built environment, whilst our capability to exploit data to inform designs and push the boundaries of what is possible is at the heart of structural engineering.

As our ability to monitor, record, extract and extrapolate information on the performance of our structures continues to improve there is a growing need to better understand how best to use the information. 

The use of big data and AI tools are emerging challenges for the industry. It is the ability to understand and manipulate information with computational tools which may transform the role of structural engineers. 

An increasingly online world requires robust digital security to mitigate potential infiltration of digital systems and the harm that could be caused to our infrastructure, whether it be financial damage, intellectual property infringement, criminal activity or terrorism. 

Featured events and resources

Training
An image from a 2017 lecture showing computational design of a structure

Computational design

Tristan Simmonds explores his engineering work on sculptural projects including the 2015 Milan Expo UK Pavilion ‘Hive’.

Date ‐ 29 May 2018
Price ‐ Free
Training
An image of structures on a roof

Awareness of scripting

A brief overview of the various tools and techniques available for scripting within structural design.

Date ‐ 19 January 2018
Price ‐ Free
Training
<h4>Combining design and digital fabrication</h4>

Combining design and digital fabrication

How to integrate design, structural engineering and fabrication via digital workflows.

Date ‐ 7 December 2018
Author ‐ David Knight MIStructE
Price ‐ Free
Training
Woodchip Barn's timber roof structure

Digital fabrication

How digital fabrication is transforming the way we construct the built environment.

Date ‐ 24 January 2018
Price ‐ Free

Digital engineering resources and events

Conference
An engineer using software

Digital Design & Computation workshops

Practical, hands-on workshops led by digital engineering practitioners and experts.

Date ‐ 19 May 2022
Price ‐ From £175.00 + VAT
Webinar
<h4>Graphic statics webinar series: Advanced computational graphic statics</h4>

Graphic statics webinar series: Advanced computational graphic statics

Graphic statics: from basics to computational tools - part 5 of 5

Date ‐ 27 January 2022
Price ‐ From £45.50 + VAT
Webinar
<h4>Graphic statics webinar series: Funicular shell form finding</h4>

Graphic statics webinar series: Funicular shell form finding

Graphic statics: from basics to computational tools - part 4 of 5.

Date ‐ 6 December 2021
Price ‐ From £45.50 + VAT
Webinar
<h4>Graphic statics webinar series: Computational graphical analysis of 2D structures</h4>

Graphic statics webinar series: Computational graphical analysis of 2D structures

Graphic statics: from basics to computational tools - part 3 of 5.

Date ‐ 16 November 2021
Price ‐ From £45.50 + VAT
Webinar
<h4>Graphic statics webinar series: Graphical analysis of frames and trusses</h4>

Graphic statics webinar series: Graphical analysis of frames and trusses

Graphic statics: from basics to computational tools - part 2 of 5.

Date ‐ 7 October 2021
Price ‐ From £45.50 + VAT
Webinar
<h4>Webinar series: Graphic statics</h4>

Webinar series: Graphic statics

Purchase the full series and gain access to all four live and on-demand webinars.

Date ‐ 7 October 2021
Price ‐ From £182 + VAT
Lecture
<h4>How can Structural Engineering be an unending stream of goodness? IABSE 2019 Henderson colloquium</h4>

How can Structural Engineering be an unending stream of goodness? IABSE 2019 Henderson colloquium

A chance to think outside the box about what can be done to make engineering an unending stream of goodness and indeed if it can be done.

Date ‐ 5 October 2021
Guidance
<h4>Design for zero</h4>

Design for zero

Pre-order now. This guide explains why overdesign is so prevalent, its impact on material consumption and CO 2 emissions, and provides five key actions you can take now, to reduce the carbon your projects produce.

Date ‐ 30 September 2021
Author ‐ John Orr, Tim Ibell, Claire Smith & Margaret Cooke
Price ‐ £22.50/£29.25/£45
Webinar
<h4>Structural design and analysis: tackling workflow complexities (sponsored content)</h4>

Structural design and analysis: tackling workflow complexities (sponsored content)

Do you want to save time and improve your daily workflow?

Date ‐ 28 September 2021
Lecture
<h4>Structural analysis, design and detailing using digital technology</h4>

Structural analysis, design and detailing using digital technology

An online presentation about structural analysis, design and detailing using digital technology.

Date ‐ 23 September 2021
Price ‐ Free
The Structural Engineer
<h4>Viewpoint: Can cybernetics help us better understand our design conversations with machines?</h4>

Viewpoint: Can cybernetics help us better understand our design conversations with machines?

With the introduction of cognitive machines, the cybernetic processes that define structural engineering as a discipline are facing rapid change. However, by looking objectively at design as a cybernetic process, we can better understand the risks and rewards and find an optimum way for humans and machines to work in partnership, argues Paul Mullett.

Date ‐ 2 August 2021
Author ‐ Paul Mullett
Price ‐ £9
Training
Blue abstract blocks

AI and the structural engineer

Peter Debney explores Artificial Intelligence and how it can help structural engineers.

Date ‐ 21 July 2021
Author ‐ Peter Debney
Price ‐ Free
Blog
Blue abstract blocks

4 free ways to build your digital skills

With the boom in technology in the construction industry, new specialisms within engineering are emerging. What's the cheapest way to improve your own digital skills? Ashley Kacha investigates...

Date ‐ 6 May 2021
Author ‐ Ashley Kacha
Blog
Blue abstract blocks

Collaborative parametric design

Rob May explains how collaborative working practices can improve design outcomes. He also shares his thoughts on the evolution of parametric design and why it’s so valuable.

Date ‐ 5 May 2021
Author ‐ Rob May
Blog
<h4>Using digital workflows to breathe new life into our buildings</h4>

Using digital workflows to breathe new life into our buildings

Hannah Lazenby explains why digital tools should be used to repurpose existing assets, and shares her experience of working on the Ken Rosewell Arena in Sydney.

Date ‐ 15 April 2021
Author ‐ Hannah Lazenby