|Alma mater||Ecole Supérieure de Géologie Appliquée,|
University of Toronto, and
University of California, Berkeley
|Known for||Founding Engineers Without Borders (USA)|
Engineers Without Borders-International Network
Mortenson Center in Engineering for Developing Communities
|Awards|| Heinz Award in the Environment (2007)|
National Academy of Engineering
Hoover Medal (2007)
ENR Award of Excellence
Washington Award (2015)
ASCE OPAL Award (2015)
Seven Honorary Doctorate Degrees
Senior Ashoka Fellow
|Fields||Development Engineering; Systems Engineering; ; and Geotechnical engineering|
|Institutions||University of Colorado Boulder|
Bernard Amadei (born July 23, 1954 in Roubaix, France) is a professor of civil engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder, founding president of Engineers Without Borders (USA), co-founder of the Engineers Without Borders-International Networkk, and founding director of the Mortenson Center in Engineering for Developing Communities. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a recipient of the Hoover Medal. In 2009, he was recognized with an Award of Excellence from Engineering News-Record. In 2012, Dr. Amadei was appointed as a Science Envoy to Pakistan and Nepal by the U.S. Department of State.
Amadei is a native of Roubaix, France, born on July 23, 1954. Amadei earned a Diploma of Engineer (Dipl. Eng.) in 1977 in the area of Applied Geology from the School of Applied Geology and Mining Engineering (Ecole Supérieure de Géologie Appliquée et de Prospection Minière) in Nancy, France (currently known as the École nationale supérieure de géologie or ENSG). Following a year of service in the French Army (August 1977 to August 1978), he began graduate studies abroad. He earned a Master of Science from the University of Toronto in 1979 and was awarded a doctorate (PhD) in civil engineering in 1982 from the University of California, Berkeley for his thesis publication entitled "The Influence of Rock Anisotropy on Measurement of Stresses in Rock in situ." The Obama administration, following up the president's announcement of the program in Cairo, named Dr. Amadei one of three Scientific Envoys appointed by Secretary of State Clinton in November, 2012.
A firm belief in the principle that engineers must hold the public welfare paramount, or above any other responsibility, led Amadei to reconsider his involvement in a hydroelectric plant in Costa Rica in 2002. He thought that this project would displace too many local residents and violate this principle of "do no harm." This realization came along about two years after his first experience with a humanitarian engineering project.
In 2000, Amadei organized an effort resulting in the construction of a water pump for a village in Belize. He undertook the effort at the suggestion of an immigrant landscaper working at his residence. Amadei saw that the installation of a pump to supply drinking water to the village of San Pablo would have a social impact on this community. Young girls in the village were tasked with carrying water each day from the river to the village. This meant that they could not attend school. Using the engineering talent of himself and his students to bring clean drinking water to the village had a huge social benefit to the community. This comprehension of the larger meaning of engineering inspired Amadei to create a volunteer organization that could enable engineers to donate their services in this manner.
From a small beginning with just a few students volunteering alongside him, the Engineers Without Borders-USA organization has grown to 15,900 members in 400 chapters. Humanitarian aid has been provided in 48 countries, benefiting more than 600,000 people.