Published on 20 January 2021

Rob Dijcker finalist for Prins Friso Engineering Prize

Rob Dijcker has been nominated for the seventh edition of the Prins Friso Engineering Prize. The Royal Institute of Engineers (KIVI) awards the prize each year to an engineer who excels in expertise, ability to innovate, societal impact and entrepreneurship. Dijcker has been chosen as one of the top three for his work in providing clients and fellow engineers with insight into the environmental impact of design, and for collaborating with them to develop strategies and solutions for more sustainable design, incorporating a societally responsible and forward-thinking approach. The Prins Friso Engineering Prize is the most prestigious Dutch prize for engineers and is awarded on 17 March, ‘Engineer’s Day’. The winner is also entitled to be called ‘Engineer of the Year’ all year long.

The three candidates for the Prins Friso Engineering Prize for 2021 were announced today: Abeje Mersha, Professor of Unmanned Robotic Systems at Saxion University of Applied Sciences; Rob Dijcker, Senior Consultant and Team Leader on Circular Solutions at Witteveen+Bos; and David Fernandez Rivas, Associate Professor at the University of Twente and CEO and founder of InkBeams and BuBclean.

Rob, team leader and senior expert in circular solutions at Witteveen+Bos: ‘Circular building requires collaboration in the construction chain, but also (and above all) technical ingenuity from engineers. My experience is that, essentially, all engineers can develop and build using circular methods, provided we create the right tools and prerequisites to facilitate it. At Witteveen+Bos and various clients (Rijkswaterstaat, provinces and water authorities) it’s been possible to get engineers working with circular design methods. The key to this is showing that circular design concerns the essence of being an engineer: creating and developing solutions to complex challenges with societal and sustainable impact. In many cases, sustainability is still a foreign concept in the daily work practices of many engineers. Circular design is about design methodology, connections, choice of materials and innovation. My motto is: circular design is applied sustainability for engineers!’

‘Over the coming year I want to inspire and motivate engineers to start working with circular design methods.’

Development of Circular Design Tool

Rob is the instigator and developer of the +Circular Design Tool, a tool for the practical application of circular design. The +Circular Design assesses the design of a construction or installation in terms of sustainability and circularity, visualising the results as a material flow analysis. In 2018, the tool won the Witteveen+Bos innovation programme, and since then it has been successfully implemented in several projects. It was also recently nominated for the Vernufteling prize. 

Vote for the public prize

From Wednesday 17 February, the profiles and videos of the three finalists will be accessible online at www.kivi.nl/dagvandeingenieur, and the public vote will be open. The public have the opportunity until 16 March to vote for one of the finalists, resulting in the people’s choice winner. Following this, the expert jury will determine the winner of the Prins Friso Engineering Prize. The winner will receive the prize during the annual Engineer’s Day event.

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