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Meet our Scientific Advisory Board: Carl Van Geem

Carl Van Geems domain of expertise is condition monitoring of road pavements and road assets, and the use of the data collected by condition monitoring for decisions on adequate maintenance, and for efficient asset management.

After his studies in Mathematics and Computer Science at the University of Antwerp, he obtained the title of Doctor in Technical Sciences (technical Mathematics) at the Johannes Kepler University of Linz. He now has about 20 years of experience in the road sector working as a research scientist in the Mobility, Safety, and Road Management Division of the Belgian Road Research Centre (BRRC).

At BRRC, the knowledge gained through technology watch and research forms the backbone for dissemination to the actors of the Belgian road sector (road construction companies and road authorities) through communications and publications, training courses, technical advice, and participation in regional, national, and international working groups.

What are the main infrastructure challenges in your area, and in your country? 

– In Belgium, the motorways and the main national roads are managed by the Regions but that is only about 10 percent of the road network. The rest of the road network is managed by local authorities: the municipalities. Water and wastewater infrastructure is usually managed by separate entities, which implies that synergies in management of the different assets must be and are discussed between the different actors.

The main challenge is the limited budget available for the management of aging infrastructure. This isn’t getting easier with new users’ expectations, such as wishing more and better cycling facilities, and environmental worries, such as increase of flash flooding. There are no simple solutions to this.