Bentley names new chief research officer

Dr. Nabil Abou-Rahme will lead Bentley Systems’ efforts in digital advancement research, collaborating with government, university and industry to promote innovative solutions.

Bentley Systems recently announced Dr. Nabil Abou-Rahme has joined the company as chief research officer for the Bentley Institute’s Digital Advancement Academies. He will work from Bentley’s London offices, and will lead Bentley’s efforts in digital advancement research, collaborating with government, university, and industry visionaries to promote innovative solutions for advancing infrastructure.

His new role was introduced last month to fellow researchers attending the Future Infrastructure Symposium convened at Bentley’s London Digital Advancement Academy.

Bentley Systems is a provider of comprehensive software solutions for advancing the design, construction and operations of infrastructure.

Abou-Rahme joins Bentley from the global consultancy firm Mott MacDonald, where he was actively involved in digital transformation, most recently as head of smart infrastructure and global practice leader for data science, and prior to that, as divisional director for intelligent transport. His career began with applied research in network optimisation and control at the Transport Research Laboratory, where he went on to manage research teams and complete a PhD. Subsequent technical highlights from his consultancy roles include specifications for the EU ITS Directive, implementation of bank-led contactless payment systems on public transport in South Africa and developing operational regimes for the first “smart motorways” in the UK.

Bentley Systems CEO Greg Bentley said, “We are gratified to have Dr. Abou-Rahme join us to inaugurate our chief research officer role. We are newly able to advance infrastructure engineering through digital twins, by converging technologies to simultaneously meet their essential requirements for digital context, digital components, and digital chronology. Accordingly, an appropriate priority for Bentley Institute’s Digital Advancement Academies is now to work with authoritative research organizations to explore and substantiate the growing benefits, which are already realizable from infrastructure digital twins. By virtue of his unique combination of infrastructure engineering expertise and research experience, and contagious zeal for ‘going digital,’ Nabil brings the perfect fit to lead these collaborative endeavors.”

Abou-Rahme said, “Bentley has a clear commitment to accelerating the adoption of digital technologies, including advancing BIM through digital twins. A key part of digital advancement research is a portfolio of demonstrator projects, collaborative prototypes that allow us to explore the art of the possible, while leveraging the best of academic, technical, and industrial experience within those teams. Our commitment also extends to supporting academic institutions through sponsorship and making our technologies available as a learning and development tool. Bentley’s open and collaborative approach to innovation is well established, and I am excited to be leading this portfolio into the next phase of application.”

A chartered engineer, Abou-Rahme holds a PhD in Bayesian statistics from the University of Southampton, a Master of Science from University College London, a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Imperial College London, and a general management certificate from Roffey Park.

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