Reflections on Resilience Engineered

Ann Allen, CEO of the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors (CICES), recently hosted a screening of the first Resilience Engineered episode for CICES members.

Below, Ann shares reflections on the episode with us and highlights key points that were discussed among members following the screening. Many thanks to Ann and the CICES members for sharing these thoughts with us.


I have just hosted a screening of the first episode of Resilience Engineered for the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors (CICES). We invited our members to join the screening and to then share their thoughts. It led to a great debate.

Carbon reduction is critical if we are to be able to reduce the rate of damage to our climate, but as a senior academic said to me recently, we can stop the decline but we cannot reincarnate lost species (at least not yet!). We have to get used to living in a world which is no longer as well-balanced environmentally as it was. We have to plan for more severe weather events, and we have to protect the most vulnerable in our society from the impact of these extreme events. The film by The Resilience Shift calls this out so well.

So far, we have just shared the first of this series of films, but it has already stimulated a great discussion within the institution, and we are addressing ways in which our members can make a difference and help build more resilient infrastructure. Members want to see a change in how we approach risk management, to move it away from being a purely commercial tool for allocating costs to something that informs more resilient design. CICES needs to help members to be able to lead this discussion and we will look to incorporate resilience into the competencies that our members have to demonstrate.

The biggest fear of our members is that we will still be talking in five years’ time, when we need to be acting now for the sake of the climate and for social justice. We, as an institution, need to help members engage in discussions and support clients so that they understand the implications of designing for resilience, and to use data and data analysis to support their thinking. We need to make sure that we look beyond infrastructure and incorporate biodiversity. We need to use nature, as well the built environment, to create more resilience around us.

A lot to do. We look forward to further debate when we screen episodes 2 and 3 of the series.

Ann Allen MBE FRICS, CEO, Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors


Watch the trailers for Resilience Engineered here and please get in touch if you’d like to host your own screening.

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