News

Prof. Ian Smith will become the Founding Director of the TUM Georg Nemetschek Institute


The TUM GNI is proud to announce that Ian Smith, Professor Emeritus at EPFL, will become the Founding Director of the TUM Georg Nemetschek Institute. Prof. Smith has been appointed for three years, starting March 1st, 2022. He has been working very successfully on Artificial Intelligence for the Built World as well as many related areas for decades. Furthermore, his worldwide collaborations in this field are a guarantee to quickly establish the GNI as a highly visible and excellently networked institution.

Prof. Smith did his undergraduate work in Civil Engineering at the University of Waterloo, Canada (1978) in a five-year program of four-month alternating study/industry periods that gave him professional experience in structural design offices, a boundary-layer wind tunnel lab (University of Western Ontario) and two steel fabricators in Canada. After his PhD at the Engineering Department, University of Cambridge, UK (1982), he continued his academic research and teaching career at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland. Starting in the Civil Engineering Department (1982-1991), he worked on measurement systems, fatigue and fracture mechanics in collaboration with industry. He switched to the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory in the Computer Science Department (1991-1996) in order to focus on software applications for the construction industry. Back in the Civil Engineering Department, he was nominated “Extraordinary Professor” (1999) and “Ordinary Professor” (2005). Prof. Smith was Head of the Applied Computing and Mechanics Laboratory (IMAC) (2000-2020) and was Chair of the Structural Engineering Institute within the School of Architecture, Civil and Environmental Engineering (2001-2006).

The Interim Directorship of Prof. André Borrmann will end with the start of Prof. Ian Smith in office on March 1st, 2022. Thanks to Professor Borrmann's great commitment, the GNI succeeded in gaining great attention already in its first year. A very successful international symposium and several already initiated interdisciplinary research projects lay the scientific foundation for a successful future. Cordial thanks are extended to Prof. Borrmann for these achievements.

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Ernst Rank

Chairman of the GNI Board of Trustees