Background Image

Erik C. Backus

In this Section
Erik C. Backus, P.E., LEED AP BD+C, FMP
Director, Construction Engineering Management Program
108 Rowley Laboratories

Clarkson University
Box 5710, 8 Clarkson Avenue
Potsdam, NY 13699

Phone: 315-268-6522
FAX: 315-268-7985
Personal Website:
CEM Program Website:

Research/Collaboration Interests/Emphasis:
•    Sustainable Construction
•    Force Protection Engineering/Infrastructure Resiliency
•    Integrated Project Delivery/Project Leadership
•    Energy/Alternative Energy Metrics/Management
•    Alternate Transportation Impacts/Planning

•    M.S., 2004, Civil Engineering (Concentration:  Construction Engineering and Management), University of Missouri – Rolla (now Missouri University of Science and Technology)
•    B.S. (with distinction), 1997, Civil Engineering (Concentration:  Infrastructure Technologies), Clarkson University
•    Professional Engineer, Missouri, 2005
•    Lieutenant Colonel, US Army Reserve, 2012

Teaching Interests:
•    CE 406 – Construction Engineering (Fall 2015)
•    CE 409 – Fundamentals of Building Systems (Spring 2015)
•    CE 410/CE 510 – Sustainable Infrastructure and Building (Fall 2015)
•    CE 490/CE 492 – Senior Design (Structures/Transportation/Geotech) /(Building, Arch) (Spring 2015)

•    Director, Construction Engineering Management, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Clarkson University, 2014-present
•    Engineering Planner, Campus Planning, George Mason University, 2011-2014
•    Chief, Engineering Division, Joint Base Myer - Henderson Hall Directorate of Public Works, 2010-2011
•    Project Manager, Facilities Administration, George Mason University, 2008-2010
•    Lead Design Engineer and Project Manager, 20th Engineer Brigade, Balad, Iraq, 2007-2008
•    Project Manager, Facilities Administration, George Mason University, 2006-2007
•    Project Manager, Centennial Contractors Enterprises, Inc., 2005-2006
•    Company Construction Officer, 389th Engineer Battalion, Baghdad, Iraq, 2003-2004
•    Operations Intern, Alberici Constructors, 2002
•    Company Commander, 955th Engineer Company (Pipeline Construction), 2001-2003

Recent Presentations
•    Backus, Erik C. (2015), A Decision-Guided Energy Framework for Optimal Power, Heating, and Cooling Capacity, 2015 Clean Energy Economy Conference, Utica, NY (June 11, 2015)
•    Backus, Erik (2015), Improving Infrastructure Resilience through Partnership and Planning (March 12, 2015):
•    Backus, Erik and Farris, David (2014), Improving Infrastructure Resilience through Partnership and Planning (November 13, 2014):
•    Backus, Erik (2014),”What’s Your Bootprint?”  Together in Mission (TIM) Talk (like a TED Talk) on Sustainability:

Selected/Recent Publications
•    Backus, Erik (2014), “Lighting Your Worship Space Primer: Bringing in the Light, Sustainably”,
•    Backus, Erik and Lo Margaret (2013), “George Mason University Environmental Design Standards”,, June 28, 2013
•    Ngan, Chun-Kit, Brodsky, Alexander, Egge, Nathan, and Backus, Erik (2013), “A Decision-Guided Energy Framework for Optimal Power, Heating, and Cooling Capacity Investment”, ICEIS 1, page 357-369. SciTePress,; Best Paper Award
•    Backus, Erik (2011), “True Sustainability: A Rubric for Evaluating Infrastructure Rating Systems and Resiliency”, The Infrastructure Security Partnership,, November 20, 2011
•    Showalter, William Eric and Backus, Erik Carl (2010). “Recruiting Construction Leaders and Managers for the Future.” The 10th International Conference "Modern Building Materials, Structures and Techniques", Vilnius Gediminas Technical University Publishing House "Technika" May 19, 2010, Lithuania, pp. 524–531,
•    Backus, Erik C., Major (2008). “A Time for Hope: Iraq Founds a New Kind of Village.” Castle Chronicle, February-July 2008; Volume 2, pp. 6-9
•    Backus, Erik C., Major (2008). “Field Force and Facility Engineer Training.” Engineer Bulletin, April-June 2008; Volume 38 PB 5-08-2, pp. 40-42,
•    Backus, Erik C., Major (2008). “Warrior Focused Construction: Tips for Success.” Castle Chronicle, August 2007-January 2008; Volume 1, pp. 22-24