The fifth instalment of the School of Civil Engineering’s annual Clark Lecture was this year delivered by Steve Yianni, Chief Executive at Transport Systems Catapult Ltd.

Efficient transport systems are essential to the success of the UK, its businesses, its economy and its people. The Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), in its State of the Nation report on transport last year, stated that ‘the UK’s ability to generate and sustain economic growth and jobs depends on the quality of our transport systems.’

Over recent years, the global demand for transport has increased significantly faster than the investment required to meet it. This has resulted in growing levels of congestion across all transport modes. Existing infrastructure does not match current demands, and funds for basic maintenance, let alone improvements, are limited.

The key challenge is how to increase ‘mobility’. With constraints on land and investment, the only way to overcome this challenge will be to work intelligently and collaboratively to develop improved transport systems that unlock capacity.

Steve’s presentation will explore how the Transport Systems Catapult, part of a world-leading network of technology and innovation centres, is working with the UK’s academics, innovators, engineers, consultancies and constructors to turn transport innovations into commercial reality, promoting sustained economic growth and wellbeing through integrated, efficient and sustainable transport systems.

Steve Yianni is Chief Executive Officer of the Transport Systems Catapult, a technology and innovation centre aimed at supporting UK based businesses to research and develop inter-modal transport solutions.

Steve graduated with an Engineering Degree from the University of Cambridge in 1983. He is a chartered engineer, a fellow and trustee of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and has an MBA from the London Business School.

Steve’s career began at the Ford Motor Company, where from 1983 to 1991. In 1991, he joined JCB, gaining 16 years’ experience in a variety of roles in engineering management and business leadership, including periods of work in India and the USA.

In 2008 Steve joined Network Rail and introduced an innovative low cost, high volume electrification concept which influenced government approval for a national electrification programme for rail. Following this success, Steve was appointed Director of Engineering in 2009, and Technical Director in 2012.

Steve was Chairman of The Welding Institute (TWI), a Cambridge based research & technology organisation, from 2010 to 2013.