Jo da Silva OBE appointed Dame in New Year Honours List

Added: 12th January 2021 by Arup

Arup civil and structural engineer, Jo da Silva, has received a Damehood as part of the Queen’s New Year Honours list for her contribution to humanitarian relief. Dame Jo has been recognised for establishing Arup International Development (AID) in 2006. The not-for-profit business, sitting within the global engineering and consulting firm, works with local groups, governments and NGOs to reduce risk, enhance resilience and improve the quality of life of vulnerable communities around the world.  

Arup’s international development professionals can call on expertise from the firm’s 16,000+ members – everyone from civil engineers and data scientists to economists and ecologists. AID has been involved in hundreds of projects around the world, including helping countries to implement safer schools, supporting natural disaster recovery and reconstruction and helping cities to increase their resilience and child-friendliness.   

The citation for the award states: “No other individual UK engineer is so personally associated with shifting the approach of a major engineering company to prioritise social outcomes for vulnerable communities in developing countries. She is an extremely effective proponent of the ‘build back better’ philosophy for humanitarian relief, as well as being one of the most successful women structural engineers globally"

Dame Jo joined Arup in 1989 as a graduate engineer, and in 2011 she received an OBE in recognition of her contribution to her services to engineering and humanitarian relief. Jo is currently the Global Sustainable Development Leader at Arup.