The certificate appointing Mr. Stensvold as guest professor, elegantly executed in both Chinese and English.
The appointment, which was issued by the Chinese road authorities, follows on the heels of his study trip earlier this year, when he visited 80 of the largest bridges in Asia over the course of seven weeks, more specifically in Singapore, Malaysia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Hong Kong, China, Japan and South Korea, or the “far East” as we say in Europe.
Børre Stensvold and two Chinese colleagues at Xihoumen Bridge earlier this year. The bridge has the world’s second longest span, at 1 650 metres.
“Naturally I am honoured, but this is actually in recognition of the entire Norwegian bridge management sector. This includes the bridges section in the Directorate of Public Roads, the many and very proficient bridge experts in the regions and the industry with its leading bridge engineering consultancy firms. We all contribute to develop systems, legislation and procedures, and share knowledge with one another through meetings, seminars and conferences.” says Mr Stensvold.
Mr Stensvold is not the only one who feels honoured. The Director General of the Norwegian Public Roads Administration is also jubilant over the news from China.
“This is a real recognition both of Børre as a professional and of the Norwegian Public Roads Administration as an agency, as well as of the expertise within the Norwegian bridge management sector. We count several professors in our ranks, but now we have our first Chinese professor. This is a well-deserved honour,” says Terje Moe Gustavsen.
Focusing on technology development
Mr Stensvold’s study trip earlier this year was based on personal contacts shaped over the course of many years, in part through membership in the Bridges Committee in PIARC.
The motivation for the trip was a long-standing desire to visit the part of the world that is now leading the field in technology development. He visited five road administrations and four research institutions and met with leading bridge professionals in many countries. Besides, BRIDGE Magazine interviewed him at the office. Professional and personal relations were strengthened, and new contacts were made.
During his travels he was invited to become an international consultant for the Chinese road authorities. Recently he was informed that the Chinese road authorities on a national level had appointed him professor at the “Key Laboratory of Bridge Detection & Reinforcement Technology, Ministry of Transport P.R.China” in Beijing.
In November Mr Stensvold will be a keynote speaker at a national bridge maintenance conference with 300 participants in Shenzhen City, one hour’s drive from Hong Kong. He has been specifically asked to present the Norwegian system for bridge maintenance, inspection and damage assessment.