Alumna Dr. Barnali Ghosh, Technical Director at Mott MacDonald has been named a Royal Academy of Engineering (RAEng) Visiting Professor at the Department of Engineering. She is a chartered civil engineer with specialisation in Earthquake Geotechnical Engineering through her PhD at the University of Cambridge.
During my formative years I witnessed severe floods and earthquakes which devastated my local community. This sparked my lifelong passion working to combat the effects of natural disasters through scientific solutions. I am now a chartered civil engineer, bringing highly specialised technical skills to challenging projects across the worldDr. Barnali Ghosh
The RAEng industry-into-academia initiative aims to utilise the experience of Visiting Professors (with backgrounds as industrialists, entrepreneurs, consultants or innovators) to enhance teaching and learning as well as the employability and skills of UK engineering degree students whilst strengthening external partnerships with industry.
Dr. Ghosh will join the Department in September 2020. She be contributing to Part IIB courses, particularly - Dynamics in Civil Engineering. Much of Dr Ghosh's career has been dedicated to devising and customising aspects of geo seismic design. Her contribution will include practical case histories making the teaching ever more useful and relevant.
Dr Ghosh tells us about her career to date:
"I was born in a small town in India, at a time when the empowerment of woman was in its infancy. During my formative years I witnessed severe floods and earthquakes which devastated my local community. This sparked my lifelong passion working to combat the effects of natural disasters through scientific solutions. I am now a chartered civil engineer, bringing highly specialised technical skills to challenging projects across the world."
"Throughout the last 17 years, I have worked as a seismic engineer across the world, addressing some of the world’s greatest challenges related to developing seismic resilience in infrastructure. In our work we have demonstrated the practical applications of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals in the creation of resilient infrastructure. We always make positive direct impact to the communities we are serving as engineers. One example includes the Dhaka environmentally sustainable water supply project where I was the seismic lead for the project contributing to feasibility, detailed design, contract procurement and construction supervision for the water pipelines. After construction, water from the Meghna river will supply drinking water to 4 million people in Dhaka by building 100 km of new pipeline, some of the deepest tunnels in Bangladesh and the country’s biggest treatment plant. The other sustainable outcomes created include advice on the creation of flood walls in Bangladesh and Nepal to help the rural communities.
"I gave a ‘thought leadership’ lecture at the Institute of Civil Engineers (ICE) on aspects of climate change. The research delved into the effects of climate change on anti-seismic devises and possible mitigations. A framework was proposed for combating the seismic and climate changes together. It is my strong belief that climate change will be a game changer for future infrastructure.
"I have been involved with the creation of the Urban Hub. This innovation primarily ensures effective collaboration between private companies and NGO’s (e.g. RedR, Oxfam) to promote sustainable solutions. The Urban Hub will benefit effective communication and co-operation between the private and humanitarian sectors - ensuring that the sector has access to the best technical advice.
"Furthermore, I am extremely passionate to become a role model for female engineers by helping them to negotiate their careers. I volunteered to work with the London and South East England Diversity Taskforce – whose key mission is to increase the proportion of female Institution of Civil Engineers London members from 17.8% to 20%. I am currently the lead mentor for Business in the Community's Cross Organisation Mentoring Circle in London.
"I have also been a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) ambassador for many years and regularly speak at schools to propagate diversity and inclusion. In recognition of my contribution, I was selected by the Financial Times as one of the Top 30 Future Industry Leaders from the BAME community and nominated for the British National Diversity Award for Gender."
Dr Ghosh was recently selected for the top 50 Women in Engineering awards 2020 organised by the Women's Engineering Society.
As a RAEng Visiting Professor Dr. Ghosh will work closely with the Department's Geotechnical and Environmental Research Group and will be hosted by Professor Gopal Madabhushi.
"Barnali showed great interest in Seismic Geotechnics during her PhD researching on foundations for nuclear reactor buildings. She translated her unique knowledge very successfully to industry and was involved in major projects worldwide. It is a real pleasure to welcome her back to Department of Engineering and I am sure she will enthuse many of our undergraduates to choose promising careers in Civil Engineering." Professor Gopal Madabhushi