People attending the conference can register for one of the following workshops:

Date: June 20th, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm

Workshop given by José María Ortolano González, Javier Giménez Vila, and José Romo Martín from Fhecor Ingenieros Consultores, Madrid, Spain.

The success of renowned structural engineers like Eduardo Torroja, Félix Candela or Jörg Schlaich is based on a deep understanding of the relationships between geometry and structural performance. At the time the masterpieces of these engineers were developed, the available tools (differential calculations, scaled physical models, early computer programs, etc.) required much time to evaluate the performance of one single design. Nowadays parametric design tools enable engineers and architects to easily handle complex geometries and quickly perform a wide variety of analysis of building elements, without losing the traditional parametric approach of the design process.

Throughout the workshop some of the new possibilities brought by these tools will be explored. Parameter-driven examples will be developed and some procedures to perform structural analysis will be shown. Through these examples, the workshop will show how parametric design can be used as a learning tool in engineering design and in structural engineering courses.

You will need to bring a computer to follow the workshop.

Date: June 20th, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm

Workshop given by José María Menéndez, School of Civil Engineering, Universidad de Castilla La Mancha. Ciudad Real, Spain.

The objective of this workshop is to provide participants with useful tools to deal with certain situations typical of the research activity: work presentations, discussion meetings, round tables or working groups.

  1. HOW TO STRUCTURE THE MESSAGE AS A WHOLE: Description of solid structures for content communication
    1. Analysis of brief exposure.
  2. HOW TO EXPRESS CORRECTLY EACH IDEA: Difficulties of communication related to expressive poverty.
    1. The poor, imprecise or confusing vocabulary and its effects on communication.
    2. Tools to improve.
  3. HOW TO MAKE A CORRECT “SETTING UP”: Keys to oral communication, other than the content of the message.
    1. The voice and its nuances. Simple tools to improve your possibilities.
    2. The body language. Harmony between voice and gesture.
    3. The auxiliary means.

Date: June 20th, 10 am – 1:00 pm

Valentín Gómez-Jáuregui. EGICAD Research Group, Universidad de Cantabria, Santander, Spain.

Would it be possible to build a structure made by solid bars floating in the air, only connected by means of cables to other bars… that are also floating in the air??!! Yes, indeed! They are the so-called tensegrity structures, incredible systems of floating compression.

By constructing tensegrity models and mockups, we will discover the mysteries underlying these structures, physically finding the ways taken by the forces to bring the structure to equilibrium. The assistants will have the opportunity to play with their tensegrity models, proposing applications for their use in structures, buildings, towers, canopies, sculptures, furniture, etc.

Besides, we will carry out digital experiments simulating the dynamic behavior of tensegrity examples by means of specialized software. Will the physical tensegrities react to our interactions the same way as the digital models?

Tensegrity is a relatively new principle based on the use of isolated components in compression inside a net of continuous tension, in such a way that the compressed members (usually bars or struts) do not touch each other and the prestressed tensioned members (usually cables or tendons) delineate the system spatially. Kenneth Snelson, the inventor of tensegrity structures around 1948, said that they ‘defy gravity while assuming intricate and evocative configurations that seem to extend impossibly into space’.


Date: June 20th, 3 pm – 6:00 pm

Jose Antonio Lozano Galant, Santos Sánchez-Cambronero. School of Civil Engineering, Universidad de Castilla La Mancha. Ciudad Real, Spain.

Structural engineering subjects aim to develop technical and practical skills for the analysis and design of structures. To achieve this goal, students need to intuit the behavior of the different typologies. Getting this deep understating about how the forces flow throughout a structure is not easy for the students, as it requires both time and experimentation. Unfortunately, although some subjects might promote experimentation by the fabrication of small-scale structural models, the truth is that most universities are only able to address the understanding of the typologies by solving numerical exercises or performing computer simulations.

According to our experience, one of the most effective ways for a student to learn any concept is by trying to solve multidisciplinary problems (with non-optimum solution). This is the foundation of the so-called Project Based Learning (PBL) methodology. Enouncing PBL problems in a contest format in groups provides many advantages. Firstly, competition is the critical driver of performance and innovation. Secondly, students need to interact, work in teams and develop their soft skills. Thirdly, students need to experiment and develop different solutions in order to choose which one fits better with the contest score criteria. In addition, students have the chance to discover and learn from the results obtained by their peers.

This workshop illustrates, in an interactive way, how to apply contests to enable students to discover by themselves the behavior of buildings and bridges. To do so, we will put the participants on the students’ shoes, by challenging them to take part in different structural contests using the construction set K’nex. The activity is founded on the experiences with a number of activities for high school and university students.


Date: June 20th, 3 pm – 6:00 pm

Workshop given by Rolando Chacón. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain.

Education takes many forms when it comes to teaching structural engineering in civil engineering schools worldwide. The educational spectrum, similarly to other engineering fields is wide. Methods range from classical master lectures to software- and project-based environments. Educationally, little attention has been paid though, to the potential use of prototyping electronic platforms in structural engineering classrooms. Broadly speaking, these electronic artifacts involve the usage of sensors, microcontrollers, actuators and occasionally, simple graphical user interfaces (GUI). In particular, these devices may be assembled in a way they provide relevant information related to the response and behavior of simple structures.

In this workshop, computer applications using open-source electronics, open-source Software coupled with illustrative structural problems will be developed. With little- to no-knowledge of electronics, the attendees will start using prototyping boards for simple electronic projects and will develop a simple GUI for visualizing results. The methodology is conceived for beginners in a scaffolding way. At the end of the workshop, the attendees will gain insight about the potential of these tools in structural engineering classrooms. In addition, a debate related to the potential trends in digital fabrication and the Architecture, Engineering and Construction sector will be addressed.

You will need to bring a computer to follow the workshop.

Date: June 20th, 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Workshop given by Angel Amador, Juan Carlos Arroyo and Javier Bartolomé from, Madrid, Spain.

Cloud computing, Smartphones, Artificial Intelligence, Self Driving cars…. Damn! These computer engineering guys seem in an unrestrained and explosive rush of productivity and creativity! They seem comfortable living in a daily changing environment and capable of teaching, learning, spreading and summing knowledge at the speed of light. Where’s the magic? How have they been able to shape such virtual-virtuous circle of thought-action-learn-teach? Is there any lesson that we as Structural Engineers could extract on their particular ways of doing in order to, at least, benefit from a portion of their dynamism and transform our own paradigms on knowledge creation, transference and evolution?

In this workshop, we will firstly make a short and interactive tour on what are the main concepts (open-sourcing, versioning, forking, wiki…) and tools (GitHub, StackOverflow…) that software developers commonly use for creating, exposing, reviewing and expanding their ideas and developments. We will pay attention to which are the agreed ruling principles of the Community and how they contribute to knowledge fostering and its spread within the Community. We will then make a practical example of implementing a small educational project using different tools, all at our reach, that allow a different and probably better way of student engagement and interaction. And while doing so, we will discover what is probably the main differentiator of these tools and way of teaching/learning: how they can be enriched and perfected by the community itself.

You will need to bring a computer to follow the workshop.

The attached brochure contains detailed information about the content and timetable of the workshops.

Workshop registration is done through the following link:

Note that there is a limited number of places for each workshop and that you need to register for the conference before registering for the desired workshop.

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