Risk Assessment in Civil Engineering

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The purpose of this one day classroom course is to outline the basic principles required for the utilisation of risk assessment in establishing rational decisions for the benefit of society and other stakeholders.

The courses demonstrates the general philosophy to be followed and points to a best practice in the treatment of risk assessment/analysis and provides examples of the application of the various formulations for risk assessment in civil engineering.


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Programme Overview
This training course starts at 09:30 and finishes at 17:00 with refreshment breaks mid-morning and afternoon, plus lunch.
All timings, except the start time, are approximate and may be adjusted to suit natural breaks in the lesson.

Session 1 - Introduction to Risk (definitions, hazards and sources of risks in civil engineering, risk-based decision principles)
Session 2 - Risk Analysis Frameworks I (system modelling, exposure and hazards, vulnerability and robustness)
Session 3 - Risk Analysis Frameworks II (fault tree analysis, consequence analysis)
Session 4 - Risk Acceptance (tolerable and acceptable risk criteria, risk perception, aversion and mitigation, methods for risk control)
Session 5 - Examples of Risk Analysis applied to Civil Engineering (vulnerability assessment, physical damage and loss assessment, risk mitigation and emergency preparedness planning)
Dr Boulent Imam
BSc (Hons), MSc (Distinction), PhD

In November 2007, Dr Imam was appointed as a Lecturer in Civil Engineering at the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences in the University of Surrey. He was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2013. Dr Imam has contributed significantly towards in-depth understanding of the fatigue behaviour of riveted railway bridges and developed methods for more reliable quantification of their remaining fatigue life taking into account historical rail traffic, novel fatigue assessment methods, loading, resistance and modelling uncertainties as well as system effects.

Later on, he extended his work on fatigue towards developing fracture mechanics guidelines for the assessment of fatigue crack growth in steel  bridge details towards the optimisation of inspection and maintenance planning in steel bridges. Recently, Dr Imam has provided valuable insight towards understanding the potential impacts of climate change on bridges and quantifying the resilience of bridge infrastructure against these impacts by developing a risk-based framework for assessing the reliability of bridges over time by considering long-term material deterioration and bridge scour as well as the consequences of failure of bridges.

​This is complemented by his research in the area of climate change adaptation and asset management.
Learning Objectives
By the end of this course delegates should understand:
  • The key concepts behind risk assessment/analysis in civil engineering
  • Risk assessment methods that can be utilised for decision making under uncertain conditions
  • How decision analysis can be formulated and performed
Who Should Attend?
This course is intended for:
  • Civil engineers
  • Bridge engineers
  • Structural engineers
  • All decision makers and professionals responsible for or involved in establishing decision support who require an introduction to risk assessment in engineering.

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Institution of Civil Engineers Thomas Telford

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