Emeritus Professor of Architectural Engineering, Department of Architecture, University of Cambridge
Professor Robin Spence is the Director of the Cambridge University Centre for Risk in the Built Environment as well as the Director of Cambridge Architectural Research (CAR). As a structural engineer, his principal research and consultancy interests focus on disaster risk assessment and mitigation.
His group aims to improve understanding of the performance of building structures at an urban scale and to create computer modelling tools for risk assessment and evaluation of the cost-effectiveness of building strengthening and other mitigation work. This modelling approach has been applied to risk assessment of volcanic, earthquake and flood hazards, and clients of such projects include brokers, insurers and reinsurers.
Prior to his current role, Professor Spence worked in structural design practice with Ove Arup and Partners before moving to the University of Zambia and then onto the Intermediate Technology Development Group, researching small-scale building materials technology in Africa and India.
In September 2002 Professor Spence was elected for a four-year term as President of the European Association for Earthquake Engineering, and is currently Vice-President. He is also a Fellow of Magdalene College, Cambridge.