‘Best of’ to join the WTC 2019 in Naples 25 Apr 2019

Roland Herr for TunnelTalk

Just around the corner and an expected 2,000 tunnellers from all over the world to arrive in Naples for seven days of comprehensive networking and the chance to listen to more than 150 presentations and visit more than 150 exhibitors. The World Tunnel Congress this year in Italy offers especially young people the chance to join some interesting events starting on Friday, 3 April 2019 with the ITACET training course.

ITACET training sessions on Friday and Saturday

It feels a bit like the same procedure as every year, but the Italian organizing committee is offering two, rather than one, ITACET training courses to provide a concentrated start to the WTC for know-how on Friday and Saturday, 3 and 4 May 2019. Tunnelling 4.0 - Information Technology for the Design, Construction and Maintenance of Underground Works, as the title of the two-day course, and Communication and Stakeholder Engagement during Tunnel, Design, Construction and Operation as the topic for the one-day course on Saturday, could not be more interesting but different. Registrations are still being taken for the courses that start in price from €120.

Arnold Dix gave an engaging presentation at the ITACET training course at WTC2018 Dubai
Arnold Dix gave an engaging presentation at the ITACET training course at WTC2018 Dubai

As one of the most discussed topics of yesteryear, BIM, building information modelling, is the topic to be discussed on the first day of the two-day training course. Highly competent specialists will give general information about the latest innovative developments and special aspects of how digital and information technology has become more and more important as a management tool. The afternoon is planned to present examples of actual BIM applications. Automation in monitoring is the topic of the second day session with lectures about monitoring methods, including with radar satellites. The morning will close with the basic theory of automatic surveying and digitization for TBMs while the afternoon is a trip into the practical part of automation in surveying and supervision of works and equipment operation, including robot-assisted sprayed concrete technology. Some 60 participants have registered for the two-day training course to date with places still available.

With the second training course, the organizers have hit the bulls eye. Communication is one of the most complicated processes we do – or don´t do – with many aspects misapplied. The training course starts with an overview of the trends of project communication and when, as well as what, to communicate. How to use new and social media is also a topic of the morning with experiences and lessons learned highlighted. The morning session will end with the point of view of the topic from a journalist. As an experienced journalist, I, Roland Herr, will present insights on this topic, detailing why it is important to present both sides of a report for publication for international industry readers. The afternoon session will present examples of managing communication for major projects from the world over. Participation to understand this vital part of project development is recommended. About 20 participants have registered for the one-day course to date and additional places are available.

ITA General Assembly

The business of the ITA and its 75 Member Nations is conducted at the General Assembly held in two sessions on Sunday morning 5 May, and Wednesday afternoon, 8 May 2019. This is the opportunity to see delegates of all 75 Member Nations at one place and time. Unfortunately not all but most, Member Nations are represented at each General Assembly.

On Sunday morning, three new Member Nations – Albania, Lebanon and Kenya –will be presented to the Assembly for approval and welcome, and the Executive Council and existing Member Nations will report on activities since the last General Assembly at the WTC in Dubai in 2018.

Jenny Jinxiu Yan
Jenny Jinxiu Yan
Eric Leca
Eric Leca

Major business for the General Assembly is the election of new officials. With the term of current President Tarcisio Celestino of Brazil and other officials ending, there will be election of a new President from two candidates - Jenny Yan of China and Eric Leca of France. Four new Vice Presidents will be elected from candidates Lars Babendererde of Germany; Arnold Dix, Australia; Randy Essex, USA; Davorin Kolic, Croatia; and Giuseppe Lunardi of Italy. New Executive Council members will be elected from candidates Abidemi Agwor of Nigeria; Hamdi Aydin, Turkey; Hangseok Choi, South Korea; Jeyatharan Kumarasamy, Singapore; Andrés Marulanda, Colombia; and Jamal Rostami of Iran.

At the General Assembly, presentations will also be given by candidates from India and Mexico to host the 2022 WTC and ITA General Assembly at venues in Goa and Cancun respectively. On Wednesday afternoon, as well as reports of the ITA Working Groups, Member Nation delegates will vote for the new officials and also for either India or Mexico to host the 2022 WTC and ITA General Assembly. Member Nations Malaysia and Denmark will also provide reports on the state of preparations of the WTC and General Assemblies in Kuala Lumpur in 2020 and Copenhagen in 2021.

Wealth of choices in the technical programme

The programme of technical sessions for delegates from Monday to Wednesday, 6 to 8 May, is comprehensive. For Monday morning, everyone is in the plenary session for the opening ceremony, the keynote lectures and the opening of the exhibition on the agenda. The afternoon splits delegates into four parallel sessions and there will be, for sure, something special to find for everyone.

WTC2019 programme at a glance
WTC2019 programme at a glance

On Tuesday afternoon, ITA COSUF invites delegates to join a session of presentations on the topic Operational Safety of Underground Transportation Facilities. On Wednesday, ITAtech and ITACUS host their sessions. ITAtech will discuss topics about Soil conditioning for EPB tunnelling and backfilling in the morning, and ITACUS will spend the whole day exploring Archeology, architecture, and art in underground construction in the morning and Strategic use of underground space for resilient cities in the afternoon.

To add to the schedule, there are meetings also of the ITA Working Groups during the days of the WTC and for those who like to network and chat with friends and colleagues, the exhibition is open all day from Monday to Wednesday.

TunnelTalk will also be part of the proceedings and will look forward to meeting visitors to its media desk in the main registration lobby of the Mostra D´Oltremare venue.


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