Turner Innovation Series

27 October -
Abu Dhabi   |   29 October - Doha, Qatar   |   31 October - Dubai, UAE

Speaker Information 


H.H. Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan
Minister of Culture, Youth, and Community Development of the United Arab Emirates

His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan joined the Federal Government in 1990 as the Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research. In March 2013, he was appointed the Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development.  

In addition to his ministerial positions, His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan has started as the Chancellor of the United Arab Emirates University (1983 – 2013), the Chancellor of the Higher Colleges of Technology (1988 – 2013) and the President of Zayed University (1998 – 2013).  He is currently the President of the General Authority for Youth and Sports (2013 – present) and the President of the National Council for Tourism and Antiquities (2013 – present).  Sheikh Nahayan is also the President of the Future Centre for students with special needs in Abu Dhabi.

Educated in the United Kingdom, His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan Graduated from Millfield School and attended Magdalen College at Oxford University.

Sheikh Nahayan actively chairs and supports many groups, clubs and associations.  He is the chair and patron of more than 100 annual conferences and symposia dealing with all aspects of life in the UAE, the region and the world.

Sheikh Nahayan is the recipient of many national and international honors and awards including the Oman Civil Order, from His Majesty Sultan Qaboos of Oman, Hilal-e-Pakistan, from the Government of Pakistan, Global Advocacy Recognition Award, from the TESOL Organization, Hamdan bin Rashid Prize for the Year’s Distinguished Person of Education, as well as many honorary degrees from several universities around the world.

Ali H. Odeh 
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Turner International Middle East (TiME)

As the first Chairman and CEO of Turner International Middle East Ltd (TiME), Ali H. Odeh leads the Dubai-based company's initiatives in providing Program, Project and Construction Management services in the Middle East, North Africa and the Indian Subcontinent. TIME is currently managing projects worth US$ 20 billion in Saudi Arabia, US$ 12 billion in Qatar, US$ 10 billion in UAE, US$ 2 billion in Egypt, US$ 5 billion in Kuwait. 

Previously, Odeh was Vice President of Turner Corporation, and the General Manager of its Middle East operations. 

Odeh has a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Michigan, Odeh has a long association with Turner, having joined the company as a Field Engineer in the Detroit unit in 1981. During those formative years, he learnt the Turner culture, its ethics and emphasis on dedicated service to its customers, to which he remains fervently committed. Soon thereafter, Odeh transferred to the international unit in New York City as Business Development Coordinator. He was assigned to Kuwait in 1987 as Project Engineer, named Project Manager in 1993, and became Project Executive in 1996. In 2000, he was elected VP and promoted to Vice President and General Manager. He moved to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates in 2004 to pursue and participate in the increasing business prospects there. Turner's business has expanded under his leadership and direction. 

Nicholas E. Billotti
Turner International LLC

Nicholas E. Billotti is Chairman of Turner International LLC, the overseas division of Turner Construction Company. He is also an Executive Vice President of The Turner Corporation. Billotti is responsible for providing strategic direction for the international business unit, which currently includes 65 construction projects measuring more than 20 million square meters in building area with a value of more than US $19.7 billion. Internationally, Turner offers program management, project management, construction management and construction consulting services.

Billotti currently manages assignments in 25 countries throughout Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean. Contributing to his success is the ability to build a marketing and sales support structure in each region through strategic alliances with local partners. From the tallest building to the world to a biotech facility in Costa Rica, Turner's quality signature is found in projects around the world.

Billotti joined Turner as a scheduling coordinator in 1976 and progressed through a series of global assignments and responsibilities before being named President of Turner International in 1996. He holds a Bachelors Degree and a Masters Degree in Urban Administration from The State University of New York at Brockport. 

Chris Edwards 

BIM Consultant

Chris Edwards is a graduate of Georgia Tech with a BS in Industrial Design. He has worked in the commercial construction industry for eight years, and has worked with 3D software for the past 14 years. Edwards is currently working as a BIM consultant for a confidential electronics manufacturer.  As a Southeast Regional Manager with Turner, Edwards set up and managed BIM coordination on multiple types of projects including hospitals, data centers, jails, courthouses, office buildings, schools, etc.  He has setup and managed BIM preconstruction services in multiple offices around the southeast United States, taught and implemented 3D modeling, 4D scheduling, and 5D estimating to the southeast region, and was tasked with developing and implementing new technologies that bring BIM to the field.


Viktor Bullain 
Regional Manager, VDC
Turner Construction Company

Viktor Bullain is a VDC (Virtual Design and Construction) management expert with over 17 years of experience in implementing 3D/4D/5D BIM for both design and construction. He is responsible for overseeing VDC implementation for Turner Construction in the South West Region. His team and their collective knowledge and approach enabled Turner to drastically reduce field RFIs and Change Orders while enhancing quality and compressing construction schedule. Turner achieved the #1 ranking in Building Design & Construction magazine's 2010 and 2011 Giants 300 BIM Report based on BIM Project Revenue. Bullain was named as "Top 20 under 40" by ENR California for his leadership in implementing new technology and his contribution to educating the community and he truly enjoys the rewards and challenges of implementing process change in the construction industry.

Eng. Abdulla Al-Mehshadi
Chief Executive Officer
Msheireb Properties

Eng. Abdulla Al-Mehshadi is the Chief Executive Officer of Msheireb Properties, a subsidiary of Qatar Foundation.
Prior to Joining Msheireb Properties, Al-Mehshadi held a number of senior positions including the Managing Director and Technical Affairs Director of the Private Engineering Office (PEO). He also worked as a Consultant to the Ministry of Environment where he advised on waste management and recycling, a concept close to the heart of Msheireb Properties’ commitment to sustainability. 
Abdulla Al-Mehshadi also held key positions at Qatar Fertiliser Company (QAFCO) where he was the Technical Manager of the first Melamine plant project in Qatar during the different phases of engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning and was later promoted to Maintenance Manager. 
Al-Mehshadi holds a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Higher National Diploma in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Huddersfield in the UK.

Eric Lee Smith, AIA, LEED AP
Design Manager
Turner International Middle East

Eric Lee Smith is an American-born architect living and working in UAE, who spent the early part of his 30 year career building an extensive knowledge of both design and construction as a technical architect working for a number of well-known firms in Southern California.  Over the last 10 years he expanded his expertise as a planning director and design manager on large one–of-a-kind programs such as the US$ 20 billion K-12 Los Angeles school bond program and the US$ 1 billion medical upgrade program for the state of California prison system.

Early on Eric understood the value added to clients and to the design firm in raising the quality of construction documents through ever-increasing levels of coordination between cad drawings of the various trades.  As early as the late 1990’s he helped to create electronic interface routines between the various drawings and specs using software which today would be referred to as an “app”.  In effect he was implementing a BIM methodology to fill a need when there was no BIM software available.

Today as design manager for Turner International, Eric serves an instrumental role in educating new and repeat clients of the value added to their projects through incorporation of BIM into the design and execution of new projects here in UAE.      

Gregory Acker
Sustainability Manager

Gregory Acker is the Sustainability Manager for the 31 hectare urban regeneration Msheireb Downtown Doha neighborhood. Greg's team is targeting 60 Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold level green building certifications in the mixed-use development. When complete it will be the largest concentration of LEED certified buildings in one project in the world. The master plan is targeting LEED Neighborhood Development certification. As owner for 20 years of his private architectural practice and companion construction company, all Gregory's buildings were environmentally correct design and construction.  As an early adopter of sustainability in design and construction, his recent international experience has been in China, Vietnam, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Doha. Sustainable design saves money with smart design, thoughtful construction and efficient operation and BIM helps to accomplish those goals.

Abdulla Lahej
Executive Director 
Emaar Properties PJSC 

Abdulla Lahej, an Executive Director with Emaar Properties PJSC, is currently heading the Project Management Department overseeing all the projects in Dubai. He is also a Board Member of Emaar Utilities and a member of the Emaar Executive Management Committee.

Lahej was part of the initial team of Emaar Properties in 2000 that developed its pioneering masterplanned communities including Emirates Hills, The Greens, the Springs, and The Meadows. 

He was an integral team member in the development of Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, and The Dubai Mall, the world’s largest shopping and entertainment destination.
An Emirati, Lahej has over 12 years of experience in the field of project management, planning, design development, and architecture. He has been closely involved in the development of several key projects of Emaar in Dubai including Downtown Dubai, Dubai Marina, and Arabian Ranches, which have redefined lifestyles and changed the face of Dubai. 

Previously, he worked with Dubai Municipality in the General Project Department, Design Section/Architectural Unit and participated in a number of different projects. 

Lahej holds a Bachelor of Science in Architecture Degree from the Milwaukee School of Engineering in Wisconsin, USA. 
 Panelist Information


Ibrahim S. Odeh 
Director and Founder
Global Leaders in Construction Management 

Ibrahim S. Odeh is currently the research director and founder of the Global Leaders in Construction Management (GLCM) research initiative at Columbia University. The main objective of his group (GLCM) is focused on: studying major challenges faced by the management team in international construction projects; analyzing and studying the international construction market industry; developing a SWOT and PEST analysis for these markets; and building a comprehensive database of major best practices and lessons learned in managing signature global construction projects. He did some studies as well as has on-going studies at several countries such with a high focus on the GCC region. Odeh is also teaching courses in the area of construction engineering and management at the department of Civil Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at Columbia University. Odeh received his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering with a concentration in Construction Management from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He also holds an MBA degree with an emphasis in Finance from Minnesota, USA.

Winn Gomez
BIM Manager
Oger International Abu Dhabi

Winn Gomez is the BIM manager for Oger International at the Louvre Museum Abu Dhabi representing the appointed contractors on this project. He is a civil engineer with a strong background in architecture, structural engineering and project management. With almost a decade of experience and knowledge in software processes, he has been delivering BIM implementation and training workshops to academia and industry in the Middle East since 2006.


Pavithran KV
Director, BIM & Senior Design Manager
Brookfield Multiplex

Pavithran is the BIM director and senior design manager at Brookfield Multiplex, with more than 23 years of international experience in leading design teams for various commercial, hospitality, residential and civil projects. His specialty is high-rise construction in the United Arab Emriates, Saudi Arabia, and India. Pavithran has directed the BIM department at Brookfield Multiplex since 2008. 

Chris Brown
Vice President, Practice Leader Architecture
Chris Brown has worked in the UK, USA, Asia and the Middle East, and has gained a wide variety of experience in different building typologies, legislative frameworks and construction industry practices. He is a highly skilled professional who over the past 17 years as a chartered architect has worked on all project stages from concept design to construction administration. His design experience also covers a variety of project scales from individual buildings to large scale mixed use developments and master plans. Brown has continued to build on a combination of design and technical expertise throughout his career as a designer on individual buildings, a design leader of precincts, and while administering contracts on complex, large-scale projects.


C.J. Chen
Engineering Manager
Turner International

C.J. Chen has been with Turner International since 2000 and has been involved on mega projects including Taipei 101, Burj Khalifa and Dubai Mall. He is now the Engineering Manager of Phase 1C,  Msheireb Downtown Doha project in which BIM is being utilized by the Main Contractor for clash detection, shop drawing preparation and interface coordination.

Dr. Ozan Koseoglu
BIM Leader
TAV Construction

Dr. Ozan Koseoglu hasa a PhD in Civil Engineering focusing on Construction Innovation and Technology Management from Loughborough University, in the UK. He worked for the largest private contractor in the UK operating in Europe, the Middle East and Australia. He worked on major projects in diverse sectors (energy, residential, commercial, education, and manufacturing) up to US$6 billion. Dr. Ozan Koseoglu also worked as Asst. Professor for Construction Management and Surveying at the School of the Built Environment, Heriot-Watt University-Dubai Campus. He currently works for the joint venture to build the $2.9 billion Abu Dhabi International Airport- Midfield Terminal Building (MTB).

He is an expert for strategic implementation of Building Information Modeling (BIM) for managing construction projects throughout the project lifecycle as design-construction and facilities management. Furthermore, he has vast experience on project and value management, design management, health, safety and environmental management, innovation and technology management, Lean and collaborative working in construction. He has various international journal, book and industry publications in the specialized areas.


Giampaolo Giardina
Senior Director Design
Msheireb Properties

Giampaolo Giardina is an Italian Registered and Licensed Architect with a distinguished career in Europe, North Africa, Middle East, and Asia. Giampaolo has intensive experience on leading international multidisciplinary professional groups with professional in-depth experience of real estate developments activities including: urban planning, design development, design & project management, contracting, construction & site management.

The positions allowed accumulating extensive knowledge on the international construction systems and practices in real estate developments, with decision-making responsibility on overall business strategies of a vast range of multiple multibillion USD mixed-use projects.

He recently joined MSHEIREB Properties, as Senior Director Design and was previously working in EMAAR Properties, in the capacity of Director Development & Projects for the Company’s Pakistan operations, and in DB REALTY, one of India biggest real estate developers, managing a large portfolio of high-rise residential, commercial and hospitality projects. He held also various positions in Europe and North Africa with Progetti srl and Edilco Group srl.

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