Western Engineering professor Gregory Kopp has been honoured with the 2023 International Association for Wind Engineering (IAWE) Senior Award and the Davenport Medal for his outstanding contributions to the field of wind engineering. Kopp accepted the award this week at the International Conference on Wind Engineering in Florence, Italy.
The Davenport Medal is named after Alan Davenport, the celebrated Western Engineering professor who defined the modern field of wind engineering, making building structures safer and more economical.
“It is humbling to be put on a list with the others who have previously been given this award,” said Kopp at the formal presentation in Florence. “It is particularly meaningful to be given an award named for Alan Davenport, whose lab I have had the privilege to work in for the past 26 years.”
Kopp, the ImpactWX Chair in Severe Storms Engineering, is only the second researcher from Western to be recognized with the Davenport Medal, after Barry Vickery received the award in 2011.
“I have long thought that all awards in science and engineering should be team awards because none of our work is really possible without the efforts of many people,” said Kopp. “I have had incredible support from Western, where there have been so many opportunities.”
Kopp is the lead researcher for the Northern Tornadoes Project, bringing his expertise in mitigating damage to structures during extreme windstorms such as tornadoes and hurricanes.
He works actively to convert research findings into practice, currently serving as Chair of the American Society of Civil Engineers 49 Standards Committee on Wind Tunnel Testing for Buildings and other Structures, and as a member of various other building code committees.
“I am absolutely thrilled for Greg,” said Western Engineering Dean Ken Coley. “The Davenport Medal is the highest honour in wind engineering. Greg has made many important contributions to this field, in particular the work he’s doing to better understand extreme weather. He is incredibly well-deserving of this recognition.”
The IAWE, formally established in 1975, promotes international co-operation among scientists, engineers and other professionals for advancement of knowledge in the broad field of wind engineering.