Maria Laguarda-Mallo, Ph.D.


BIM/VDC Project Engineer,

VIATechnik LLC.


Maria Laguarda-Mallo, holds a PhD degree in Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering from the University of Minnesota and two Master’s degrees, one in Biorproducts Engineering (University of Minnesota) and another in Timber Construction (Universidad del Bio Bio, Chile). She also holds a professional degree in Architecture from Universidad ORT Uruguay and two Associate degrees, one in Interior Design and another in Graphic Representation (ORT).

She worked as a professional Architect and Professor for two years in Uruguay before starting her research career. From 2012 to 2017 she worked as a researcher and lecturer at the University of Minnesota. She now works as a BIM/VDC Project Engineer at VIATechnik in Chicago, managing BIM coordination projects, Point Cloud-to-BIM projects and conducting research on BIM, Innovation, Prefabrication and Mass Timber Construction.

Breakout Presentation Topic:
Critical Factors in the Willingness to Adopt Innovative Wood-Based Building Materials in the Construction Industry: The Case of CLT

To increase the understanding of the market potential for CLT in the U.S., this research aimed at identifying the critical factors influencing the willingness of U.S. construction professionals to adopt innovative wood-based construction materials. The overall objective was achieved by: (a) investigating the level of awareness, perceptions, and willingness to adopt CLT among structural engineers and construction firms; (b) developing a conceptual model including the most critical factors that influence the adoption of innovate wood-based construction materials among structural engineers and construction firms; and (c) identifying distinct market segments for CLT adoption in the U.S.