RILEM Spring Convention and Conference on Ambitioning a sustainable future for built environment: comprehensive strategies for unprecedented challenges

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The third RILEM Spring Convention and Conference, RSCC2020, will be organized by the University of Minho, in Guimarães, between the 10th and the 14th of March 2020. The same event will combine the RILEM standing committee meetings (TAC, DAC, DEV, Bureau), several RILEM technical committee meetings (TC), a PhD Workshop, a Plenary RILEM Workshop and a Conference. RSCC2020 will be the ideal opportunity to network and meet with partner organizations, as well as to take advantage of a high quality technical programme and appreciate the cultural and emotional atmosphere provided by the social events.

The RSCC2020 main goals are to:

  • Discuss sustainability of global societies and contribute to define new trajectories for their enduring development, in the frame of the topics that are more relevant to RILEM, and in particular the ones related to the built environment;
  • Identify and disseminate innovative technologies for more efficient and less resource‐intensive construction and maintenance;
  • Establish a closer dialogue and stimulate the exchange of knowledge between the diverse disciplines (new materials, structural modelling and design, durability, monitoring and maintenance, among others), in order to stimulate sound innovations based on multidisciplinary knowledge;
  • Stimulate the discussion around disruptive strategies and new concepts to address current and future challenges for the built environment;
  • Discuss and pursue alternative ways to relate the activity of RILEM TCs, between each other, between these and other experts’ associations, the industry and the society, in order to accelerate the uptake of new technologies by the community;
  • Promote a novel and fresh organizational structure for attracting proactive and enthusiastic younger researchers and practitioners for the technical and scientific initiatives of RILEM, by promoting a PhD Workshop and opening opportunities for young researchers to communicate their ideas and integrate RILEM Standing committees.


The event theme is closely related to the most critical challenges that humanity currently faces, which relate to RILEM activity. “Ambitioning a sustainable future for built environment: comprehensive strategies for unprecedented challenges”. Under this theme, four main topics are proposed:

Topic 1: Strategies for a resilient built environment

Topic Lead: Daman Panesar

This topic will coverall the aspects related to current and emerging approaches that lead to an optimized design and maintenance of constructions and systems. It includes the development of service life models and life cycle design, in order to maximise longevity and level of service while minimising the environmental impact of constructions and systems. It may include also the analysis and design of larger systems, such as communities, cities or regions, aiming at reducing risk and increasing resilience. 

Topic 2: New materials and structures for ultra‐durability

Topic Lead: Alexandra Bertron

This topic will cover the current scientific and technological developments aimed at improving knowledge about degradation mechanisms in construction materials, as well as to the development of new materials with extreme durability. Novel special materials for extreme environments or extreme loading conditions are also included, as well as novel approaches to improve the performance and durability of currently common construction materials. Contributions to this topic are expected to focus primarily at the scale of the materials and their micro-meso-properties.

Topic 3: Service life extension of existing structures:

Topic Lead: Nele de Belie

This topic will cover the most recent scientific and technological developments in the understanding of the evolution and degradation of construction materials and structural systems. Analytical and numerical, as well as experimental approaches, aimed at characterizing, modelling and predicting the evolution of the physical, chemical and mechanical properties of construction materials and structural systems are regarded. Multiphysics models are also considered, as well as other strategies that contribute for an accurate characterization and prediction the service life and the evolution of existing and novel construction materials under normal or extreme environmental exposure or loading conditions. New strategies to promote the smart repairing or the recovery of material properties, as well as the service life extension, are also considered.

Topic 4: Shift to a circular economy

Topic Lead: Enzo Martinelli

This topic is focussed on sustainability and will cover the research and technology on the use and development of sustainable materials and structural systems, as well as on recycling and reusing. It will also cover the implementation of industrial processes leading to minimized waste, including digital fabrication and deconstruction, as well as integrative approaches that lead to the achievement of the concept of circular economy. Additionally, this topic will cover research on novel or existing construction materials and systems based on local resources and regional practices.  


Centro Cultural Vila Flor

Guimarães, Portugal

Located in the city centre of Guimaraes, one of Portugal’s UNESCO World Heritage cities, the Vila Flor Cultural Centre (CCVF) is a true mark of excellence in a place where culture is lived out fully. CCVF incorporates the 18th century Vila Flor Palace with magnificent gardens and lovely architecture. The theatre wing is a totally new design building, equipped with two auditoriums, four conference rooms, an exhibition area of 1,000m2, a restaurant, café-concerto, car park and gardens, offering unique facilities for a very insightful and inspiring Convention.

From Tuesday 10 March 2020
to Saturday 14 March 2020 (GMT +2)
Centro Cultural Vila Flor
Guimarães, Portugal

Centro Cultural Vila Flor

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From Tuesday 10 March 2020
to Saturday 14 March 2020 (GMT +2)
Centro Cultural Vila Flor
Guimarães, Portugal
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