Since my high school days, I had the dream of working on significant projects which would help our society grow and to keep peace with our surrounding countries despite the horrible civil war that my country went through. Looking back at the beginning of my professional career, IRD Engineering was crucial in achievement of this dream to be part of a team that would build a better tomorrow.
Mladen, please tell us about yourself:
I was born in Gradiska, a small town in Bosnia and Herzegovina located on the banks of Sava River at the border with Croatia. After I finished Elementary and Grammar school in Gradiska, I applied and successfully joined the Architectural and Civil Engineering University in Banja Luka, where I obtained a Master of Science degree. After graduation, I worked for a local contractor on various activities: asphalt and concrete laboratory, site manager, Quantity Surveyor etc. Two years later, I joined one design company where I gained significant experience in road design. Since 2008, I have been engaged on major international infrastructure motorway and road construction projects in the country and in the whole region.
When did you join IRD?
IRD Engineering was involved in all motorway construction projects where I was engaged either as JV partner or as JV Leader. In December 2012, I was officially employed in IRD Engineering srl subsidiary company in Banja Luka which was primarily established for the supervision of the construction of the motorway section Prnjavor – Doboj.
I am pleased to say that the implementation of this project was very successful both in time and in financial aspects, moreover having in mind it was the first major infrastructure project managed according to Yellow FIDIC Conditions of Contract.
I am also proud to say that I feel part of a very dedicated and professional team of engineers working for IRD Engineering on numerous major road supervision contracts in the whole region
What is the nature of your work? In what kind of projects do you work?
The real nature of my work is dynamic and constant adjustments to new work environments, designs, technical specifications and all regulations. So far, I worked in projects for the construction of three new motorway sections in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in road rehabilitation projects in Serbia, all with numerous different design solutions and construction issues.
What are the biggest challenges you typically have to face in your work?
First of all, the biggest challenge is most commonly the difference between actual conditions on site and design documentation. That was a recurrent issue for all projects I worked on up to date. Besides that, I always have to become familiar with the local regulations which are similar throughout the region but can have many different details.
But, with substantial support from the highly experienced engineers and project managers from IRD, I always managed to overcome many difficulties in all projects I worked on.
What are the most positive aspects of being part of IRD Engineering?
Being part of IRD Engineering allows me to have significant technical and backstopping support from the Head Office in Rome and from all IRD staff around the world. Practically there is no construction, contractual, legal or any other issue which would stay unresolved. More than that, thanks to IRD Engineering I gained a lot of international experience which I hope to keep enriching in any future projects.
Another important benefit is that I constantly meet new colleagues with different backgrounds and past experience who are also ready to share their skills and knowledge, their experience from other projects, the problems they encountered and the solutions to these.
How do you think IRD Engineering has contributed to the wellbeing of the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
Since I live in Banja Luka region, I can confirm first-hand the many advantages arising from the new motorways that have been constructed in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Also, I am currently working on a section on the South and this will be extremely important for the economic and social development of the city of Capljina.
Why Bosnia and Herzegovina is in your opinion worth a visit?
Shortly, my country can be described as a land of impressive rivers and pristine mountains. You can enjoy during any season of the year, whether you are into skiing, swimming, hiking, flying, or just relaxing in the nice ambient of one of the many touristic villages on the banks of our sparkling clean mountain rivers.
Besides, since Bosnia was always on the crossroad between great empires, it has a very rich historical legacy.
All in all, I would strongly recommend everybody to visit this stunning country and to experience all its beauties first hand. Bosnia is a synonym for good people and for beautiful and untouched nature.