Sustainable Mega-Infrastructure and Impact Assessment Symposium

1 - 3 December 2015

Join ERM at the upcoming Sustainable Mega-Infrastructure and Impact Assessment Symposium in Panama City, Panama, from 1-3 December 2015.

ERM is proud to be a sponsor for this event, which is the first of its kind organized by the International Association of Impact Assessment (IAIA).

The Symposium will bring together project developers, regulators and impact assessment experts to discuss the key challenges around development of mega-projects, with the express goal of identifying a set of sustainable infrastructure best practices.

While ERM prides itself on a long history of providing impact assessment and planning services across the globe, sustainable development of mega-projects in particular has become one of our defining strengths. Our approach to sustainable development of projects focuses on the following principles:

  • Identifying, early in the development process, environmental and social risks with the potential to impact a project’s cost and schedule,
  • Developing practical means of addressing these risks so that project development goals are preserved in a manner that is sustainable for the natural and human environment, and
  • Engaging stakeholders meaningfully throughout the process to ensure that their concerns and interests can be addressed in concert with project development.

ERM experts will be presenting at the Symposium in five sessions, including the Closing Plenary during which the Symposium participants will come together in a facilitated exercise to agree on a set of sustainable infrastructure best practices.

ERM at the Symposium

Dave Blaha, a Partner with ERM, will chair a session entitled Managing Complexity for Large Infrastructure Projects, focusing on techniques to improve their environmental and social performance. He will draw on his experience working with several large and controversial infrastructure projects such as the Nicaragua Grand Canal, Keystone XL Pipeline, and the Oyu Tolgoi and Pebble mines. Dave will also participate as a panelist for the closing plenary.

Braulio Pikman, a Partner with ERM, will speak on how to address climate change risks in large infrastructure projects. As one of ERM’s thought leaders for energy, climate change and sustainability, Braulio will speak from more than 30 years of experience advising project developers in the Americas, providing examples and results of the methodology ERM currently applies to address climate risks, mitigation and adaptation.

Emlen Myers, a Technical Fellow and Partner with ERM, will speak on the opportunities and challenges that cultural heritage poses to large infrastructure projects. As ERM’s global discipline lead for cultural heritage, Emlen will draw from more than 20 years of experience advising proponents and lenders on major projects in Europe, the Mediterranean, South and Central America, and Africa. 

Todd Hall, a Partner with ERM, will speak on cumulative impact assessment related to major infrastructure projects. As ERM’s Impact Assessment and Planning Practice Lead for the Americas, Todd will discuss the role of project proponents in addressing cumulative impacts and will share lessons learned concerning the challenges and best practices of conducting cumulative impact assessment on major infrastructure projects.


Hotel Riu Plaza Panama
Panama City, Panama

Register for the Event

Registration for the Symposium is open until 31 October 2015, so we encourage you to register your attendance soon. We expect that these best practices will play an important role in the way mega-projects are evaluated by approvals authorities in Latin America and beyond, so it is important that project proponents and other key stakeholders play an active role in best practice development.