As the steel industry navigates through challenges from steel tariffs and safeguards, it reinforces our need to invest in the future though Education and Research. With great knowledge and comprehension, we can position steel as the material of choice. The Education and Research Council (ERC), remains committed to enhancing the steel industry by supporting education and research through numerous on-going initiatives and activities.


By Michael Holleran, P.Eng., Chairman, Education & Research Council


To encourage the development of structural steel knowledge, as well as the development of steel expertise, knowledge and innovation in steel design and construction, the ERC has engaged the steel community to assist in research topics. As part of the ERC’s mandate to foster steel research and guide the academic community to relevant research topics, the ERC is asking for the membership to submit needed topics. The Research Grant Committee will review the submitted topics that are considered to be of interest and of importance to the steel industry. These topics are given to researchers within Canadian universities and colleges to offer insight to current challenges facing the industry. I welcome all stakeholders to submit topics to the CISC for consideration.



Another important initiative for the ERC is the Canadian National Steel Bridge Competition (CNSBC).  This annual competition was created in partnership between CISC and the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE) in response to a need within the industry to give students an opportunity to enhance steel knowledge within Canada. This event empowers students to learn structural steel design, demonstrate construction competencies, and value the knowledge and team building skills that they will use as the future generation of design professionals. During this event, Canadian universities conceive, build and assemble steel bridges respecting a realistic scenario. To distinguish themselves from other teams, a compromise must be made between the architectural, technical and economic aspects. The CNSBC fosters impactful relationships between students and industry professionals by connecting steel design, fabrication and erection with a practical project, while at the same time developing their interpersonal and professional skills. The inaugural CNSBC was hosted by McGill University in 2016 and has grown each subsequent year. The 4th edition of the Canadian National Steel Bridge Competition will be hosted by École Polytechnique de Montréal in Montreal, Quebec from May 15 – 18th, 2019. I would strongly encourage all stakeholders to reach out to your local universities, engage with the future leaders and build a relationship with these students. Your support will build bridges for the future.


Please consider supporting the ERC to ensure these initiatives can continue to thrive and to encourage the growth of the structural steel industry. Please contact the CISC for more information on how your funding can directly support education and research in the steel industry.