Iris D. Tommelein

Distinguished Professor of Engineering and Project Management, UC Berkeley

Iris D. Tommelein is a Distinguished Professor of Engineering and Project Management in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department and she directs the Project Production Systems Laboratory (P2SL) at the University of California, Berkeley. Iris has been studying, developing, and applying principles and methods of project-based production management for the architecture-engineering-construction (AEC) industry, what is called Lean Construction.. In this effort, she has published nearly 400 refereed articles, books, and book chapters, and given numerous keynote lectures on her research. And to ensure her Lean Construction research findings get applied in practice to drive innovation and advance our industry, she has led many industry workshops, hosted conferences, and is actively engaged in consulting work with practitioners.

Iris’ education in civil engineering, architecture, and construction engineering and management – including her use of computer science and artificial intelligence in project management – reflects the interdisciplinarity of industrialized construction innovations. She served four years on the Executive Committee of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Technical Council on Computing and Information Technology (TCCIT) and held professional membership on TCCIT's Database and Information Management Committee. She was a co-founder of the Lean Construction Institute (LCI) in 1997 and was recognized by the LCI with the Lean Pioneer Award 2015. She is the recipient of the prestigious 2022 Project Production Institute (PPI) Technical Achievement Award, recognizing significant contributions and thought leadership in the area of Project Production Management. Tommelein was inducted into the National Academy of Construction (NAC) in 2019.

As an extension of her lifelong effort to improve the AEC industry, Iris has advised the Builders Lab program design since its inception. Her technical expertise in areas such as lean design and process management ensures our curriculum accommodates ventures attempting to align their production practices with their new product development, design, customer and market fit, and other dimensions.