Human behavior is influenced by the built environment, and certainly in a small country like the Netherlands this environment is subject to long-term planning. This means that building engineers have a high degree of responsibility in finding the right balance between science, technology and design. However, the conflicting interests also include economic, political and environmental aspects.
The Netherlands is changing in demographic terms and in its social structures. Society will have to provide constant stimulation for building with innovative and market-oriented concepts. One of the characteristics of the built environment is that its physical lifetime is usually longer than the economic lifetime. This means that one of the focal research areas is the development of durable, flexible, environmentally-friendly and safe buildings and installations.
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