Since 1996, Erik Anders Nelson has been working in the engineering and building construction industry.  He started as an estimator for a large contractor and soon transitioned into bridge engineering.  Since then Erik helped design more than 1000 structures ranging in scale from small projects such as houses and one story commercial structures to large projects like baseball stadiums and high rises.  Prior to starting Structures Workshop, he worked on numerous structures with complex geometries and innovative structural systems such as the Linked Hybrid project in Beijing, and the design of large dynamic structures for the entertainment industry such as Cirque du Soleil's show Ka and the Sentosa Crane Ballet.  Erik also has extensive experience in forensic investigations and failure analyses including the non-linear analysis.

Erik was an adjunct professor in the Architecture Department at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) from 2006 to 2019, and had been teaching engineering courses at University of Massachusetts and MIT that include steel, concrete, masonry, high performance structures, BIM, statics, and strength of materials.  He continues to publish articles in Structure Magazine, Civil Engineering Magazine, and Modern Steel Construction Magazine, most of which can be accessed in his active blog.

Erik is the former President of the Structural Engineers Association of Rhode Island (SEARI, 2005-2019) and is a member of the ASCE, AISC, NESFA, and AIA.  He served on the board of advisers for Rhode Island Museum of Science and Art (RIMOSA) and the board of directors of the Building Research and Community Exchange (BR+A+CE). In addition, Erik is a former founding member of the ASCE-SEI Engineering Philosophy Committee and has published and presented on numerous topics at various conferences such as Land Ethics, the Metaphysics of Quality and Engineering Education.  He also presents on technical subjects such as recent talks on weld design and concrete torsion. He is a modal law structural engineer and registered professional engineer in Illinois, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Maine, Washington D.C., Texas, Illinois and New York.

Erik Nelson holds a Master of Science in Structural Engineering from MIT, a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Lake Forest College, and a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis.


Curriculum Vitae


"Philosophy of Engineering” Journal of Prof Issues in Eng Education and Practice 2014
”Socrates, How is Engineering Knowledge Attained?” April 2013 Structure Magazine
"Economical Weld Design" January 2013 Modern Steel Construction Magazine
"Manifesto for Growth" Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4 April-July 2012 Structure Magazine
“What makes an Engineer, an Engineer?"  March 2012 Structures Congress Proceedings
“What is Structural Engineering, Exactly?” February 2012 Structure Magazine
"Simple Shear Connections - Not So Simple" April 2011 Structures Congress Proceeding
"Making Connections - The Linked Hybrid" March 2011 Civil Engineering Magazine
"BIM and the Structural Engineering Community" December 2008 Structure Magazine
"Twilight of the Idols" March 2008 Modern Steel Construction Magazine
"The Structure that Sings" March 2008 Structure Magazine
"Infinite Load Path?" October 2007 Structure Magazine
"Participation Mystique" May 2007 Structure Magazine
"Architects are from Plato" January 2007 Structure Magazine
“Curious Deflection” July 2006 Structure Magazine Featured Article
"World Trade Center Building Damage Survey" 2003 (GNA, TT, SEONY)

"The Structure that Sings" March 2008 Structure Magazine

"The Structure that Sings" March 2008 Structure Magazine

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