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DGMR Conference Fire Safety in a Sustainable Future

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route and parking

21 March 2024 – Singer Museum Laren – the Netherlands

The world around us changes and it seems this change is going even faster every single day. Climate change but also the availability of natural resources forces the building industry to re-think the way we build. Most of us are aware of this trend but we do not yet fully grasp the implications this has for building fire safety.

This DGMR conference will get you up to date. Not only by giving a holistic view on how to combine fire safety and sustainable building, but also providing the latest results of research and practical information in relevant sub-areas. The presentations at this conference are in English. The cost of the conference is 290 euros excluding VAT.

Combination of top speakers

You do not want to miss this day with a combination of national and international top speakers! Angus Law (University of Edinburgh) will present the latest research on fire behavior of façades as a system. Margaret Simonson McNamee (Lund University) will tell you all about her work on the fire resilience of a sustainable built environment. Wojciech Wegrzynski (ITB) will share the results of large scale fire tests on (green) facades and Johan Anderson (RISE) will present the latest results of the development of a harmonized European large scale façade fire test. Heikki Väänänen (European Commission) will summarize the current fire safety activities in DG GROW.

New ways of proving fire safety performance of facades in the Netherlands by testing will be presented by Rudolf van Mierlo and Paul Hoondert  (DGMR). Their colleague Johan Hoogeweg will sketch the developments of sprinkler systems in sustainable residential environments. And Patries Robijn-Meijers (DGMR) will close the line by presenting results of large scale tests performed on FR CLT.

The conference is a unique opportunity for fire safety professionals and façade engineering professionals to get up to speed with the latest developments.


9:00WelcomeKees Both
9:15Learning from failure - The behaviour of cladding materials, products, and systems in fireProf. Angus Law University of Edinburgh
10:15Overview of experimental work on green facades Prof. Wojciech Wegrzynski ITB
11:30Update on the research to develop a European large scale façade fire testDr. Johan Anderson RISE
12:15Fire safety activities in European Commission DG GROWHeikki Väänänen M.Sc. DG Grow
13:45Development of the Dutch standard for intermediate and large scale façade fire testing used in the Dutch Building codeRudolf van Mierlo M.Sc. & Paul Hoondert M.Sc. DGMR
14:30Is fire science doing enough to foster sustainable fire safety?Prof. Margaret  Simonson McNamee University of Lund
15:45Challenges and opportunities for sprinkler systems in sustainable residential environmentsJohan Hoogeweg DGMR
16:30Large scale tests on fire retardant treated CLT (RISE/Brandforsk/DGMR/FRIC)Patries Robijn – Meijers DGMR
17:00Wrap-upKees Both


Johan Anderson has worked in the Fire and Safety Department at RISE for over 10 years and his research is mostly focused on simulations and computational work of fire dynamics and structures exposed to fire. He is involved in research on fire in electric vehicles. He published several scientific papers on the measurement and modeling of façade fire testing in the years 2012-2018. He is the leader of the European project on harmonizing the façade fire assessment method within the EU. He has a master’s degree in physics from the University of Gothenburg and a PhD from the Chalmers University of Technology.

Margaret Simonson McNamee is Professor in Fire Safety Engineering in the Department of Building and Environmental Technology at Lund University in Sweden. She has her technical expertise in understanding and characterizing the environmental impact of fires and has worked in the field of fire and combustion research for more than 30 years. The focus of her research in recent years has broadened to encompass fire safety and sustainability. She wrote more than 110 international publications (including five book chapters) in addition to over 40 Technical Reports in the field. She is active in the International Association of Fire Safety Science (IAFSS) and was the first author of the IAFSS position paper on fire safety research challenges for the future –IAFSS Agenda 2030 for a Fire Safe World. 


Dr Angus Law is a Senior Lecturer in Fire Safety Engineering at the University of Edinburgh’s Fire Research Centre. He works on topics encompassing flame spread, cladding, composite materials, mass timber, risk indexing, fire testing, reaction-to-fire, and regulation of fire safety. He has advised the UK Government’s Expert Panel on Fire Safety, advised Scottish Government on fire safety issues, and contributed Dame Judith Hackett’s of Building Regulations and Fire Safety.

Dr Law has authored more than 30 journal publications on fire safety topics. He is presently programme director of the University of Edinburgh’s MSc in Fire Engineering Science. He teaches classes on Engineering Failure, Fire Safety Engineering, and Professional Ethics. In the aftermath of the Grenfell Tower fire, Dr Law played a key role supporting Expert Witness Professor Luke Bisby in preparing his evidence for the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.  ​

Dr Wojciech Węgrzyński is with ITB, that is the Polish Building Research Institute in Warsaw. He currently holds the position of the Deputy Head of Fire Research Department and the Professor of the Institute. He is director at SFPE Europe. He is an Author of 40 peer-reviewed papers published in all of the primary FSE journals. His main area of interest is the fundamentals of compartment fire dynamics and standardized fire testing, and also: the use of computational fluid dynamics in fire, wind and fire interaction and evaluation of the effects of the spread of smoke in buildings, as well as fire testing of new technologies in civil engineering. He is member of the Sub-committee for Research of the IAFSS. He was the 2018 NFPA Harry C. Bigglestone Award Recipient; 2019 Jack Watts Award Recipient and 2020 SFPE 5 Under 35 Award Recipient. Member of the Editorial Board of ‘Fire Technology’. He hosts a fire podcast at firescienceshow.com

Heikki Väänänen works as a policy officer in the Construction unit in DG GROW since 2019 with a focus on fire safety activities and European Assessment Documents. He joined the Commission in 2004 and in 2008 he moved to DG Joint Research Centre (JRC) as the corporate Quality Manager. Since 2012 he developed and managed the planning and execution processes related to JRC Work Programme.   

Heikki started his career as a research engineer and project manager in the Helsinki University of Technology laboratory for Structural Engineering and Building Physics. His research focused mainly on nail plate jointed timber structures. After that he changed into the Total Quality Management where he worked as a trainer, practitioner and consultant.  

 Heikki has a master’s degrees in Civil Engineering (Helsinki University of technology), and in Economics and Business Administration (Helsinki School of Economics and Business Administration).

Rudolf van Mierlo is senior fire safety consultant at DGMR. For 35 years Rudolf is committed to fire safety research and consultancy with primary specialisms: reaction to fire of materials, design of test methods, fire spread and smoke spread models, fire safety of storage of hazardous substances, methods for the integral assessment of fire safety and Dutch and European fire safety regulations. He is the author of many Dutch and European standards (amongst others EN 13823, NEN 6059-1, NEN 6075, NEN 6068), guidelines, and of studies for legislative amendments. He teaches in courses for companies and governmental entities and regular courses of educational institutes. Rudolf is appointed by the Dutch Minister of the Interior and Kingdom Relations as member of the Advisory Committee on application and equivalence of Building Regulations. 

Paul Hoondert has been working as a fire safety engineer at DGMR for more than 6 years. He graduated in Building Technology from the Faculty of Architecture at Delft University of Technology. During his studies, he developed a growing interest in fire safety engineering. His master’s thesis focused on the safe evacuation of different types of hospital patients. Paul is currently nearing completion of his postgraduate master’s degree in Fire Safety Engineering at Ulster University in Belfast. His thesis research focused on comparing a Medium-scale façade test with numerical modeling in FDS.
In recent years, Paul has worked on several complex and monumental building projects. He has also performed several analyses for the expected façade behavior in case of fire for both existing buildings and newly designed buildings. He contributed to the new Dutch standard for large façade tests NPR 6999 and the research for NEN on PV panels on the building skin.
Patries Robijn-Meijers started her career as a fire safety officer in the fire brigade after her study Structural Engineering. In 2006 she left the fire brigade to become a fire safety consultant. Her career as a consultant was interrupted for two years in which she was a teacher amongst others at the Netherlands Institute for Public Safety. She joined DGMR in 2010. She since specialized in the fire safety of complex urban developments such as Leidsche Rijn Centrum (Utrecht) and Bajeskwartier (Amsterdam) and complex buildings such as the Maastricht conference center (MECC). In her work she focuses on the practical implementation of (experimental) research into the build environment.  

She is member of the board of the VVBA (Dutch association of fire safety consultants) and member of the supervisory board of the Fellow Fire Safety engineering at the University of Eindhoven (TU/e).  


Johan Hoogeweg started his career as a fire safety officer in the fire brigade after his study Structural Engineering. In 2006 he diversified into the fire safety consultancy branch at DGMR.  

In his role as a general fire safety consultant, he develops general fire safety strategies for complex and high rise buildings. He specialized in fire safety installations, such as water mist, sprinkler and fire detection systems. One of his passions is  incorporating them into a building with respect for the architectural concepts.  Additionally he is writer or co-writer of several publications about third-party certification of fire protection systems, and the use of sprinklers to reduce structural fire protection demands. He also has participated in a publication about the value of sprinkler installations in residential environments.  

He is active in two CCV technical working groups, working group G ( extinguishing gas systems) and working group C (sprinkler) 



Route and Parking

Address Singer Museum Laren:

Oude Drift 1, 1251 BS Laren

Coming by car?

The parking situation at the Singer Laren has recently changed. Near the museum only short parking and disabled parking is possible.

During the congress you can park (free of charge) at the Tergooi grounds: Rijksstraatweg 3, 1261 AN Blaricum. Permanent security is present.

In the morning and afternoon Singer Laren will use buses to bring you to the museum. Please take into account 15 minutes extra travel time.

Coming by public transportation?

By OV bike through beautiful surroundings: At the stations Hilversum, Naarden-Bussum and Bussum-Zuid you can rent OV bikes. Singer Laren is from these NS stations only 15-20 minutes cycling through a beautiful moorland landscape.

If you prefer to travel the last part by bus: from Naarden-Bussum take bus 109 (direction Hilversum via Laren-Eemnes) to the Singer Museum stop. You get off in front of Singer Laren. From Hilversum, take bus 108 (direction Huizen via Laren) to the Brink stop. From here, walk northwest on the Brink, which turns into the Naarderstraat. After a 5-minute walk, Singer Laren is on your left.