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Past Wenk Lectures


Tracy Kijewski-Correa

Dr. Tracy Kijewski-Correa
Climate-Driven Coastal Hazards: The Interface of Research, Policy and Practice
Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Lecture Synopsis | Watch Video


Elizabeth Hausler

Dr. Elizabeth Hausler
Resilient Housing: At the Nexus of Climate Justice, Technology and Finance
Tuesday, October 6, 2020

A global expert on resilient building and post-disaster reconstruction, Dr. Elizabeth Hausler will present a talk titled “Resilient Housing: At the Nexus of Climate Justice, Technology, and Finance.” Hausler is the founder and CEO of Build Change, an organization that helps prevent the loss of life in earthquakes and typhoons by designing disaster-resistant houses and schools in emerging nations and training local builders and engineers to construct them. Under Hausler’s leadership and strategic direction, Build Change has grown to become a global team spread across five continents. Hausler’s emphasis on rebuilding to withstand future disasters has profoundly influenced global development policy by making resilience a major consideration for reconstruction efforts.

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Laurie Johnson
Rebuilding for resilience: Disaster experience informs future recovery efforts
Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Drawing upon years of experience researching and practicing post-disaster recovery planning and management, internationally recognized expert Laurie Johnson will present key findings from her recent book, After Great Disasters: An In-Depth Analysis of How Six Countries Managed Community Recovery. Johnson will offer insight from her experiences following Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy, the 1995 Kobe and 2011 Tohoku earthquakes and tsunami in Japan, the 2011 earthquakes in Christchurch New Zealand, the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake in China and more.

Lecture Synopsis | Watch Video


Ann Rendahl
A powerful transformation: A revolution of change in the electric industry
Thursday, November 29
Lecture synopsis

From more options for generating power to accommodating customers who produce their own clean energy, changes are impacting all segments of the energy industry. The 2018 Wenk Endowed Lecture speaker, Ann Rendahl, offered insight into these changes during her lecture “A Powerful Transformation.” According to Rendahl, who was appointed to the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission, it is critical for civil and environmental engineers to understand how these changes will influence the design of electricity infrastructure, the forecasting of water supply for hydroelectric power, air quality needs and more.


Alexandre Bayen

Alexandre Bayen
Road Work: Using Mobile Data to Alleviate Traffic Congestion
Thursday, November 16, 2017

Slower speeds and longer trip times are becoming the new normal. The fast-growing Seattle area, in fact, ranks 10th in the nation and 20th worldwide for traffic congestion*. To address this challenge, expert Alexandre Bayen proposes utilizing crowdsourced mobile data from drivers and passengers. This data, combined with optimization techniques and game theory, has the potential to enhance algorithms that control traffic estimations as well as infrastructure such as traffic light timing and variable speed limits.    * INRIX global data
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Carlos Fábrega

Carlos Fábrega
The Panama Canal: Expanding One of the World's Engineering Wonders
Thursday, October 27, 2016

An in-depth look at the most notable component of the Panama Canal Expansion Program, the Third Set of Locks project, presented by Carlos Fábrega. Fábrega was a key player in the Third Set of Locks project, serving as a member of the Board of Representatives and Executive Committee of the Grupo Unidos por el Canal JV (GUPC), the contractor selected to build the new Locks.
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David Sedlak

David Sedlak
Malozemoff Professor, Co-Director of the Berkeley Water Center and Deputy Director of the NSF engineering research center for Reinventing the Nation’s Urban Water Infrastructure (ReNUWIt), University of California, Berkeley
A Path to the Fourth Urban Water Revolution
Thursday, November 12, 2015, 4:30 pm in Alder Hall Auditorium.
Sedlak Biography | Lecture Synopsis | Watch video


Thomas DeLuca

Thomas DeLuca
Forest and Environmental Sciences and Sustainability: A Quest for the 21st Century
November 6, 2014
DeLuca Biography | Lecture Synopsis | Watch Video


Kevin Hagen

Kevin Hagen
Sustainable Business Advocate
Good news, we have to redesign everything
November 7, 2013
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Paula J. Hammond
Secretary of Transportation, Washington State Department of Transportation
Engineers in Public Service
October 25, 2012


V. Setty Pendakur
UW Alum (MS ‘62, PhD ‘64) and Professor Emeritus, University of British Columbia
A Billion Urban Chinese by 2025
October 20, 2011
Pendakur Biography


Dale Jensen
Program Manager, WA Dept of Ecology Spill Prevention, Preparedness & Response Program
Striking a balance from competing values in setting public policies: A Case Study on Washington State Oil Spill Issues
October 28, 2010
View Presentation | Transcript


Dennis McLerran
Executive Director, Puget Sound Clean Air Agency
Innovation and Collaboration Leading to Cleaner Air in the Puget Sound Region
December 3, 2009


Daniel J. Evans
Former Washington Governor
Was This a Transformational Election? Challenges Facing a New Administration
November 6, 2008