Imperial College London


Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Laing O'Rourke/RAEng Chair in Systems Integration



+44 (0)20 7594 9245j.whyte Website




Mr Tim Gordon +44 (0)20 7594 5031




436Skempton BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Laing O'Rourke / Royal Academy of Engineering Professor of Systems Integration

My research focus is on systems integration in civil infrastructure. Infrastructure projects are organizationally complex and deliver both physical assets and digital asset information. The vision is of developing next-generation tools for and approaches for systems integration. Research activities support the transformation to an advanced manufacturing industry with digital engineering capabilities, with decision-support tools for engineers and managers working on complex engineering projects. 

I am Director of the Centre for Systems Engineering and Innovation in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Imperial College London. The Centre aims to bring systems engineering and innovation to built infrastructure. It is a Faculty of Engineering initiative, drawing together researchers from across disciplines. Industry members and partners of the Centre include Laing O'Rourke, Mott Macdonald, Bentley Systems and the Project Production Institute. Research themes are production systems, infrastructure inter-dependencies and the transition from project to operation.

There is a broader ambition to bring together expertise in infrastructure and computing to rethink infrastructure systems engineering. I am an Academic Fellow in the Data Science Institute at Imperial College London. I also lead a strategic challenge on 'Data-Driven Engineering Design Under Uncertainty' in the Alan Turing Institute/Lloyds Register Foundation Programme on Data-Centric Engineering. I have recently co-authored a second edition of the book on 'Virtual Reality and the Built Environment', which will be published in early 2018.

My current trajectory of research involves work with major infrastructure clients and projects to visualize and understand complex product systems; identify risk and build in resilience and support collaborative working.  The work builds on a trajectory of EPSRC-funded research, including the  Design Innovation Research Centre (2010-2015), which had a focus on new modes of design in the digital economy and was funded through a Challenging Engineering grant. 

I am active in a number of external roles. I co-curate the World Economic Forum (WEF) Engineering and Construction Transformation Map; was an advisory board member for the 2017 Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) State of the Nation report on Digital Transformation; and co-chaired a 2017 Royal Academy of Engineering 'Frontiers of Engineering for Development' event, with international participants. Social media presence includes researchgate and twitter (tweeting in own capacity and retweets don't mean agreement).



Comi A, Whyte J, Future making and visual artefacts: an ethnographic study of a design project, Organization Studies, ISSN:1741-3044

Lobo S, Whyte J, 2017, Aligning and Reconciling: Building project capabilities for digital delivery, Research Policy, Vol:46, ISSN:0048-7333, Pages:93-107

Brookes N, Sage D, Dainty A, et al., 2017, An island of constancy in a sea of change: Rethinking project temporalities with long-term megaprojects, International Journal of Project Management, Vol:35, ISSN:0263-7863, Pages:1213-1224


K Soman R, Whyte J, A Framework for Cloud-Based Virtual and Augmented Reality using Real-time Information for Construction Progress Monitoring, Lean and Computing in Construction Congress (LC3).

Soman RK, Birch D, Whyte JK, 2017, Framework for shared visualization and real-Time information flow to the construction site, Pages:286-293

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