Guillaume Habert is Professor of Sustainable Construction at the Department of Civil, Environmental & Geomatic Engineering, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich).
He is also a member of the Academic Committee (AC) of the Holcim Foundation.
ETH Zurich established an endowed Chair for Sustainable Construction in 2012. This professorship took the place of an assistant professorship of the same name that Holcim had been financially supporting since 2006. Holcim made a notable donation to the ETH Zurich to mark its Centennial in 2012, and has funded the Chair for Sustainable Construction since then. Holcim, the sponsor of the Holcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction, now continues this engagement in tertiary education and research.
The Chair for Sustainable Construction seeks to develop research to identify the relevant parameters that influence the environmental impacts of buildings; to quantify the improvement potential for each specific material during the various states of its lifecycle; and impellent sustainable practices through innovative construction techniques based on analysis of the technical, economic and socio-cultural context.
Guillaume Habert was previously a research engineer at the Université Paris-Est, France. His research interests focus on the evaluation of concrete sustainability and the development of innovative bonding agents for use in construction. In addition, he examines the life cycle assessment of individual buildings and urban precincts. He worked at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (National Center for Scientific Research) in collaboration with Lafarge at Toulouse, France.
From 2007 to 2012, he conducted research at the Laboratoire Central des Ponts et Chaussées in Paris. His work focused on the development of sustainable concrete and led him to address the environmental evaluation of building materials as well as the development of new binders such as geopolymers. He has lectured on sustainable construction and has taught in various engineering and architectural schools.
Guillaume Habert studied environmental and earth science at École Normale Supérieure in Paris and obtained a PhD in geology from Université de Toulouse, France. The topic of his dissertation was Relations between internal structures in granite and the tectonic context. He has also completed post-doctoral studies on low-cost construction materials at Universidade Federal da Paraíba (UFPB), Brazil.
He received the 2015 Robert L’Hermite Medal from RILEM (International Union of Laboratories and Experts in Construction Materials, Systems & Structures) for his pioneering work on environmental analysis of building materials and processes along with his contribution to the development and understanding of alternative materials such as geopolymers and recycled products.
He became secretary of the RILEM TC EEC (Environmental evaluation of concrete structures toward sustainable construction) in 2012 and is also a member of the board of editors of the RILEM journal Materials and Structures / Matériaux et Constructions.
He presented “What buildings do?” at the inaugural Roundtable held at MIT Endicott House, Boston, MA, USA (2014) and also participated in the 2nd Roundtable held in Einsiedeln, Switzerland (2015) and 3rd Roundtable held the Institute for Lightweight Structures & Conceptual Design (ILEK), University of Stuttgart, Germany (2018). He was a workshop moderator at the 5th International Forum for Sustainable Construction dedicated to “Infrastructure Space” in Detroit, USA in 2016.
He was a member of the Awards jury for North America in 2014 and for Asia Pacific in 2017. He was a workshop moderator for Shifting the flows, pulling the strings: Stocks, flows, and their dynamics at the 6th International Holcim Forum for Sustainable Construction held in Cairo, Egypt in April 2019.
Guillaume Habert was a member of the Holcim Awards jury for region Middle East Africa in 2020.