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J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 1 Coastal Engineering – Theory and Practice J. W. Kamphuis Queen’s University Kingston, ON, Canada K7L 3N6.

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Presentation on theme: "J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 1 Coastal Engineering – Theory and Practice J. W. Kamphuis Queen’s University Kingston, ON, Canada K7L 3N6."— Presentation transcript:

1 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 1 Coastal Engineering – Theory and Practice J. W. Kamphuis Queen’s University Kingston, ON, Canada K7L 3N6 This paper and presentation are posted on: May 2011

2 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 2 Abstract: This paper attempts to identify the development of coastal engineering, paying particular attention to how its theory and practice have grown and are becoming alienated so that they no longer complement each other. It presents some possible routes to preclude further separation and bring about possible symbiosis.

3 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 3 1. History May 2011

4 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 4 The history of Coastal Science and Engineering is related to the history of civilization and societal development.

5 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 5 (Western) Thinking §There was the Age of Providence – Please the god(s) and all is well §Then came the Age of Enlightenment – Replace inscrutable laws of fickle god(s) with constant laws of nature, which can be studied and understood and in time we should be able to chart our own course (Also called the Modern Era). 1. History

6 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 6 But… : §Philosophers such as Nietzsche and Heidegger began to question the “Yes we Can!” euphoria. §Much of the original questioning took place in the late 19 th Century. §Thus began the Postmodern Era. §(Still not begun in many areas of science and technology, business and others). 1. History

7 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 7 Coastal Engineering grew up in the “Late Modern” age §Wave forecasting for allied troop landings in 1944 §Large expansion of facilities needed §Initial study of shores and shore protection. §ICCE began History

8 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 8 Modern Aspects of Coastal Science and Engineering §Given time and funding we thought we could (think we can?) improve solutions indefinitely and give ever more accurate answers. §In the beginning the funding was there. §In the beginning a pressing need for improvements to shores and facilities was there. 1. History

9 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 9 But then….. §We lost confidence in the basic tool of coastal engineering and research, our trial and error tool, the physical model (around 1970). Models had reached practical limits; they could only provide answers up to a certain level of accuracy, larger models could not produce better results and became too costly. §(The computer arrived, but it just extended the euphoria by 40 years. 1. History

10 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 10 And we found… §Numerical modeling cannot reveal “the truth” even when calibrated with the best field data. §“Good” coastal engineering is not necessarily considered good by all. §There are no single, unique approaches to problems and no single answers. §This was essentially the end of modernity for Coastal Engineering and Science. 1. History

11 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice Learning May 2011

12 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 12 Learning (or Development) Curve Time Development ( Knowledge, Religion, Business) Rapid Progress Oops ! May Learning

13 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 13 Ages of the Learning Curve Time Infancy Old age Maturity Development ( Knowledge, Religion, Business) May Learning

14 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 14 The Learning Curve of Knowledge Time Knowledge Yes. we can ! Modern Era Postmodern ? ? Enlightenment May Learning

15 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 15 Learning Curve + Kuhn (1977) Time Knowledge Solution of pressing practical problems Much empiricism Pressing problems are solved Development of sophisticated theories Paradigm is articulated Science becomes subculture (talks to itself) Work is addressed to peers and adjudicated by peers Challenges are internally imposed (Improvement of theories, validating paradigm) Infancy Old age Maturity May Learning

16 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 16 Kuhn also defines Paradigm Shift Time Paradigm Shift (Sharp Break with the Old) Development ( Knowledge, Religion, Business) May Learning

17 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 17 Learning Curve - Photography Time Photography Plates Digital Colour Film Paradigm Shift May Learning

18 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 18 Possible Decline Time Paradigm Shift Knowledge and development can decline after paradigm shift due to lack of interest, people moving on to greener fields. Development ( Knowledge, Religion, Business) May Learning

19 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice Application of the Learning Curve + Kuhn to Coastal Engineering and Science May 2011

20 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 20 §Some of the following may be offensive some of you. §It will contain coarse language. §It will contain scenes of nudity (the emperor has no clothes). Warning May 2011

21 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 21 §I use Kuhn’s work here. §It is perceptive. §But, as with all theoretical concepts, it is based on simplifications (as is this presentation). §Nevertheless, it is useful to gain insight into the development of coastal engineering and the theory/practice subject of this conference Disclaimer May 2011

22 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 22 §In spite of any pessimism I present,… there are many signs of hope, indications of improvement and course corrections. §There are many possibilities for further course corrections and improvements, etc. I overstate the problem for clarity May 2011

23 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 23 Time Knowledge Solution of pressing practical problems Much empiricism Pressing problems are solved Development of sophisticated theories Paradigm is articulated Coastal Engineering becomes a subculture. Work is addressed to peers and adjudicated by peers. Challenges are internally imposed (Improvement of theories, validating paradigm). Infancy Old age Maturity May a. Learning Curve + Kuhn (1977) This fits coastal theoretical work, but not coastal practice 3. Application

24 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 24 Stages of Knowledge Re-Interpreted Time Knowledge “Practice” develops to solve (simpler) practical problems using much empiricism. “Practice” and “Theory” work together to develop, more sophisticated methods – Theory supports practical solutions. Theory and practice become separate cultures. Research goes much beyond solution of practical engineering problems. Infancy Old age Maturity Theory: Challenges internally posed, peer adjudication Practice: External adjudication by clients and public May Application

25 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 25 3b. Amplification of “Old Age” Theory Practice Remember - Overstatement for focus ! Theory: Challenges internally posed, peer adjudication Practice: External adjudication by clients and public The difference is the Adjudication ! 3. Application Theory and practice become separate cultures. Research goes much beyond solution of practical engineering problems.

26 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 26 Traditionally, decision making and design was simple. A project owner hired an engineer, a practical individual, who simplified concepts, designed by trial and error (models) – Infancy. Then we improved our solutions with formal university courses, given by (practicing) engineers and who conducted research in support of better engineering - Maturity. 3b. How did we get there ? 3. Application

27 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 27 Universities want to be “universities” and not “professional schools”. This means Research as well as teaching of Practice. §The Universities, however, need to emphasize research §To generate additional income §To develop reputation §This normally comes at the expense of teaching. 3. Application How did we get there?

28 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 28 §Valuable research results are understood by the universities to be (Peer Reviewed) Publications and Citations, which are purported to be: §Hard evidence of scientific achievement §Improvement of scientific theories §Validation of the existing paradigm, etc 3. Application How did we get there?

29 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 29 §This “Research” has become a self-contained game (as in Old Age as defined by Kuhn - “a subculture that talks to itself”) §This Research/(Publish or Perish) culture defines researchers/theoreticians, but also practicing engineers. 3. Application How did we get there?

30 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 30 Researchers/Theoreticians. §The Research/Publish or Perish culture defines research funding, hiring, salaries, promotion and tenure. §This forces Engineering Profs, Ph.D’s, Postdocs and Graduate Students (our brightest minds) into the research game and away from practice (and from teaching engineering). §Discussion with Sam 3. Application How did we get there?

31 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 31 §Since the Engineering Profs must focus mainly on research, students are less exposed to actual, practical engineering concepts, supported by their prof’s practical experience. §The busy profs also relegate teaching to PhDs, postdocs and teaching assistants, who have little or no practical experience. 3. Application How did we get there?

32 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 32 Engineers in Practice §At the same time the Research/(Publish or Perish) culture also defines engineers in practice: §They are essentially outside the system §There is no incentive for them to join hands with their researcher/theoretician colleagues. §They walk away from the very force that defines them as well as their colleagues 3. Application How did we get there?

33 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 33 This rant about the disconnect between practice and theory (engineering and research) is not unique for coastal engineering. It is voiced regularly in civil engineering and in other applied science disciplines. But it is also voiced in other professional disciplines, such as medicine, law, etc. 3. Application How did we get there?

34 May 2011J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 34 §The peer review system that drives the publish/perish and reward systems is seriously flawed. §Because of specialization, adjudicating peers are close colleagues, often friends. §This is not objective adjudication §It tends to preserve the status quo §The system is of little interest to engineers in practice and v.v., thus missing a vital input into the system. Finally The emperor is clearly without clothes! 3. Application How did we get there?

35 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 35 §In light of: l Climate change - sea level rise, increased storm activity l Man-induced land subsidence. l Continued population encroachment upon the world’s shorelines. l etc. §We can no longer afford to: May Application

36 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 36 §We can no longer afford to: l Institutionally reduce “good” Coastal Engineering to peer- adjudicated Coastal Research l Downgrade the teaching of practical engineering. l Support a rewards system that is primarily based on the number of citations and published papers l Support peer review systems, university education and technical conferences that draw young people away from practical engineering and into more theoretical science. (Easier, safer, sexier?). §There are many hopeful signs ! (e.g. 1 st yr design courses) May Application

37 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 37 §We need engineers who can synthesize technical information and integrate it with Socio-Economic constraints to formulate problems accurately and to provide solutions to very complex problems. §This is not Science – it is Engineering; the application of science to real life problems for practical answers. §And future problems will not become any easier or less urgent. May Application

38 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 38 3d. Coastal Learning Curves ?? Time Numerical Modeling Process Knowledge Data Collection Today Physical Modelling Development % of Potential ? May Application

39 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 39 §1970: §The steepness of the numerical modeling, process knowledge and field measurement curves resulted from the introduction of computers. §We took full advantage of the opportunities provided by the computer. Development (% of potential) Time Numerical Modeling Process Knowledge (Theory) Field Data Collectio n Today Physical Modeling May Application

40 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 40 §2011: §All learning curves are quite flat. §This is the “Old Age” of Coastal Engineering §Therefore, we can not - must not - continue along the old paths followed since 1970 (as we continue to do at present). Development (% of potential) Time Numerical Modeling Process Knowledge (Theory) Field Data Collectio n Today Physical Modeling May Application

41 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 41 3e. Coastal Learning Curve ?? Time Decline in knowledge and development of Physical Modeling Development ( Knowledge, Religion, Business) Paradigm Shift ?? (Introduction of computers) May Application

42 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice How can we proceed? May 2011

43 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 43 §Rapid advancement can occur through a paradigm shift l We should be so fortunate! l We need to encourage it by funding real innovative thinking with money that is not tied to peer review and publications only. l Set up a “Coastal Think Tank” ? May 2011 Proceed?

44 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 44 §In the meantime, to advance at all (to be able to meet the present and future design complexities, uncertainties and the approvals procedures) we need a concerted (and integrated) effort on all fronts – process knowledge (theory), physical modeling, numerical modeling, field measurement. May 2011 Proceed?

45 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 45 §We must take advantage of the particular strengths of each element. §We must integrate science and engineering, re-integrate theory and practice and integrate all our tools, people, facilities and cultures. May 2011 Proceed?

46 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 46 §Specialization has occurred within coastal engineering, e.g. numerical modeling, waves, sediment transport, breakwaters, environmental, construction, etc. §This is inevitable – it is the “continental drift” of progress of knowledge. §It is generated in a positive feedback loop with peer review. §But… May 2011 Proceed?

47 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 47 §To be able to solve practical problems, we must connect the various ‘expert silos’ better and concentrate on the more general concepts of coastal engineering, as well as on the specialties. §This will be very difficult, since career advancement is generally based on specialization, publication, etc (It is like stopping continental drift?). Proceed? May 2011

48 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice Integration (of cultures, expertise, tools and people) May 2011

49 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 49 Closer (physical) integration of cultures 1.Theory ↔ Practice 2.University Education ↔ Engineering 3.Physical ↔ Numerical Model (ing, ers) 4.Physical Laboratory Space Integration May 2011

50 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice Theory ↔ Practice : l As a profession, we must define exactly what we mean by these terms. l We must together define a prioritized agenda of research needs and update it regularly (forming a target for research). l We must find means to fund these vital priority research topics (e.g. lobby !). Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures

51 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 51 l We must address the peer review of engineering research and create room for greater interest and involvement of practicing engineers. l We must address the university reward system for engineers (and other professions?) l We must address the system of research funding for engineering research. Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures 1. Theory  Practice

52 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 52 l We must encourage (and find funding for) participation of practicing engineers in peer review, tenure and promotion committees, etc. l Inclusivity is part of the basic fabric of universities. We need to stress Equal Opportunity for practice and theory - e.g. count engineering reports, patents, practical experience, etc., as well as the usual scholarly achievements. Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures 1. Theory  Practice

53 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice University Education ↔ Engineering: l We must as a profession define engineering education, e.g. theory + application + problem solving + skills. l We must increase interaction on the shop floor – Students and Professors must spend time regularly in industry – “Scholarships and sabbaticals in practice, co-op programs, etc.” (and find funding) Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures

54 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 54 l We must get engineers into the universities “Engineers in Residence, Mentoring, Educational leaves, design courses, etc.” (and find funding). Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures 2. University Education  Engineering

55 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 55 l We must encourage and develop “Industrial Academies” l The coastal courses run by the developers of software, are a great idea. But they must be technically broad and teach theory and application, as well as skills with software. l If the university does not teach practice, the profession must AND IN A PROFESSIONAL MANNER. Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures 2. University Education  Engineering

56 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice Physical ↔ Numerical Model(ing,ers) l This is happening. l My first job  My second job 4. Physical Modelers - Join forces, co- operate, share facilities and expertise. l HYDRALAB is an excellent example. Always problematic because of intellectual property and perceived leading positions. Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures

57 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 57 §This integration will cost money. §To generate funding, we must immediately be able to show added value: l Better, more relevant education = $$, l More competent engineers = €, ¥, l Shorter project approval periods mean reduced costs, l Academic rewards for engineering as well as research will improve performance, l etc, etc, etc. Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures Comment

58 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 58 §This is a road map. §It does not tell you about the vistas and flowers along the road – stop to look around and smell the roses! §It does not tell you what has been done to the road in the past to straighten the curves, improve the sight lines, widen the shoulders etc. Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures Final Note

59 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 59 §Many people have been and are working to improve the road. §What I present is not something new. §The problem is not unique to coastal engineering §We are not starting, we are in a process. §But there is much to be done to prevent further crashes on the road. Integration May 2011 (physical) integration of cultures Final Note

60 J.W. Kamphuis Coastal Eng. Theory and Practice 60 Thank You The paper is posted on: (or google: j william kamphuis) May 2011


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