David Bonowitz selected as 2020 EERI Distinguished Lecturer

The Earthquake Engineering Research Institute is pleased to announce that David Bonowitz (M.EERI,1994), a leading structural engineer practicing in San Francisco, is the recipient of the 2020 Distinguished Lecture Award.

Bonowitz will deliver the Distinguished Lecture, “Functional Recovery: What it Means to Design for Community Resilience,” at the National Earthquake Conference and 72nd EERI Annual Meeting to be held March 4-6, 2020 in San Diego, Calif. Don’t forget to register for the conference today to lock down your first chance to hear the dynamic 2020 Distinguished Lecture in person.

Bonowitz’s lecture will focus on the emerging concept of functional recovery as a basis for earthquake-resistant design. Designing buildings and infrastructure for limited downtime – or an acceptably quick functional recovery – is not new, but it is receiving new attention through state and federal legislation, and showing new feasibility through research and technology. 

Most intriguing is the recognition that designing for functional recovery is a necessary tool for achieving community-wide earthquake resilience. And if progress is to be measured at the community level, functional recovery will also be a matter of public policy. The lecture will look at the roles EERI members can play in shaping this thinking into design practice with four sets of questions: definitional, technical, policy, and implementation.

Bonowitz is an appointed member of the new Federal Emergency Management Agency-National Institute of Standards and Technology working group on Functional Recovery of the Built Environment and Critical Infrastructure. He is a co-author of “Functional Recovery: A Conceptual Framework,” an EERI white paper, and lead author of “Resilience-based Design and the NEHRP Provisions,” now in review by the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program Provisions Update Committee. Bonowitz is also a Fellow Member of Structural Engineers Association of Northern California and Structural Engineers Association of California, and past chair of the National Council of Structural Engineers Association Existing Buildings and Resilience committees.

The Distinguished Lecture Award recognizes EERI members who have made outstanding contributions to earthquake risk reduction. The award encourages communications and dialogue on important and timely topics. Stay tuned for more information on how EERI Student and Regional Chapters can request a local lecture.