Dr Edmond Byrne Awarded Trevithick Prize for UCC Engineering Education Research

19 Oct 2015
Photo: L-R Dr Edmond Byrne (Process & Chemical Engineering) receives the Richard Trevithick Memorial Award from Professor David Balmforth (Imperial College London), ICE President at the Institution of Civil Engineers, London

School of Engineering academic Dr Edmond Byrne has just been awarded the Richard Trevithick Memorial Prize (2015) by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE).

Pictured above is the award being presented at the Institution of Civil Engineers headquarters at One Great George Street, London by the President of the Institution, Professor David Balmforth.


The Trevithick Prize is awarded from the Richard Trevithick Memorial Fund, a fund established in 1888 in memory of Richard Trevithick (1771-1833) and which was also used to provide a memorial window in Westminster Abbey. The balance of the fund, accepted in trust by the Institution of Civil Engineers, is used to fund this annual award. Richard Trevithick was a mining engineer who played a key role in laying the basis for the industrial revolution. He developed the world’s first high-pressure steam engine and subsequently the first full-scale railway steam locomotive, launched in Merthyr Tydfil in 1804.


The Trevithick Prize was awarded jointly to Dr Byrne and co-author Dr Ger Mullally (Dept. of Sociology) for their joint paper ‘Educating engineers to embrace complexity and context’, which was published in the Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers - Engineering Sustainability. The paper resulted from research around a module taken by all School of Engineering first years Professional Engineering Communication and Ethics which Dr Byrne teaches on and coordinates.


The accompanying Proceedings Editorial commented that ‘the approach taken in Cork has demonstrated that it is possible to sensitise young engineers to the dimensions of modern day challenges that lie beyond the technical realm. In my view at least, Cork’s students are being prepared for a world that is increasingly connected and increasingly collaborative; for a fulfilling and successful public and private life.’


The award is made by the ICE annually to ‘authors from both industry and academia who have produced work judged by their peers to be of exceptional quality and benefit to the civil engineering and science community’. Consequently the work has been made free to view on ICE Virtual Library in perpetuity as part of the Institution’s ‘commitment to furthering knowledge and best practice in civil engineering’.

Process and Chemical Engineering

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