Improving engineering project management: Inauguration of the
Jarislowsky/SNC-Lavalin Research Chair in the Management of International

MONTREAL, May 31 /CNW Telbec/ - With its industry partners in attendance, the École Polytechnique de Montréal officially launched the Jarislowsky/SNC-Lavalin Research Chair in the Management of International Projects. The Chair will undertake basic and applied research as it seeks the best methods for planning and controlling highly complex international projects.

Held by Robert Pellerin, Full Professor with the Department of Mathematics and Industrial Engineering at École Polytechnique, the Chair will have a total operating budget of $525,000. The funds - $275,000 of which will come from the Jarislowsky Foundation and $250,000 from SNC-Lavalin - are to be allocated over the next five years. Most of the budget is earmarked to fund student work on various aspects of the Chair's scientific program.

The Chair's mandate will be to build on existing research, new ideas and applied research to improve current practices, as well as develop better processes and techniques for planning and monitoring projects that are partly or fully implemented abroad. The Chair intends to achieve its objectives by developing decision-making tools that can be integrated with current project planning software, holding workshops, publishing scientific papers, and developing and disseminating case study projects for the scientific community.

"This Chair will stand apart from other project management chairs through its multidisciplinary program that takes into account business processes, logistics constraints, problem-solving approaches and information systems used to plan and monitor complex engineering projects," said Professor Pellerin. Added Christophe Guy, Chief Executive Officer of the École Polytechnique: "Through its work, the Chair will help Canadian companies accelerate their growth and encourage a larger number of organizations to adopt advanced project management practices. There is no doubt that this Chair will enhance the international reputations of the Polytechnique and Canada in the field of international project management expertise."

    The Chair's work will focus on four primary areas of research:

    Area 1: International project planning
    Area 2: International project scheduling
    Area 3: International project monitoring and re-scheduling
    Area 4: Project planning information systems

"The Jarislowsky Foundation's involvement in this Chair is a natural choice," said Stephen A. Jarislowsky, President of the Jarislowsky Foundation. "By advancing knowledge in technology and international competition and through developing a skilled workforce, we can help position Canadian companies to greater advantage."

SNC-Lavalin, one of the leading engineering and construction groups in the world, is "proud to participate in a project of such international reach and the development of high-level skills." Michael Novak, Executive Vice-President, SNC-Lavalin Group Inc., said, "This Chair will strengthen Montreal's position as a centre of excellence in project management, helping to attract, train and retain qualified staff and thereby enabling us to continue sharing our expertise with the world right from here."

About École Polytechnique de Montréal

Founded in 1873, École Polytechnique de Montréal is one of Canada's leading engineering institutions in terms of both teaching and research. It is the largest engineering school in Québec in terms of the size of its student body and the scope of its research activities. École Polytechnique provides instruction in 13 engineering specialties and is responsible for more than one-quarter of Québec's university research in engineering. The school has 230 professors and nearly 6,300 students. It has an annual operating budget of close to $86 million, in addition to a $56.4-million research and infrastructure fund.

SOURCE Polytechnique Montréal

For further information: For further information: Nathalie Rochette, Communications and Recruitment Office, École Polytechnique de Montréal, (514) 340-4711, ext. 2339, Cell: (514) 941-5660,

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