William Baker

SOM, Consulting Partner | Chicago, United States


William F. Baker is the Structural Engineering Consulting Partner for Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. Throughout his career, Baker has dedicated himself to structural innovation—most notably in the design of tall buildings. His development of the Burj Khalifa’s “buttressed core” structural system has been instrumental in the era of the supertall building. At 828 meters, the Burj Khalifa is the world’s tallest man-made structure. Baker is also actively involved with numerous institutions of higher learning, and various professional organizations. He is a Fellow of both the ASCE and the IStructE, and frequently lectures on a variety of structural engineering topics.


Fazlur R. Khan Lifetime Achievement Award (2008)

Student Competition Second-Round Jury (– Present)

Leadership and Scope Committee, Chair (1999 – 2000)

Annual Conference, Presenter (Hong Kong 1990; Amsterdam 1995; Melbourne 2001; Stuttgart 2003; Seoul 2004; New York 2005; Chicago 2006; Dubai 2008; Shanghai 2012; London 2013; Middle East 2018; Chicago 2019)


22 October 2018


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The Future of Tall Building Technology

Since their earliest form, tall buildings have stood as technological marvels, reflecting the latest advancements in materials, methodologies, and tools. These two technologies continue to...


11 October 2019


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CTBUH 2019 Congress Special

On the 50th anniversary of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat’s founding, the CTBUH 10th World Congress returns to the Council’s home: Chicago....


20 October 2018


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Polycentric Cities: The Future of Vertical Urbanism

CTBUH 2018 Conference Speakers

As we approach the new normality of cities housing 10 million or more inhabitants, those best positioned for the future are evolving along polycentric, multi-nodal...