After the shocks of 2020—pandemic, fires, floods and economic turmoil—clearly nothing is certain about the year ahead. But ENR’s Top 25 Newsmakers do give a sense of the themes that may be in the news in 2021.

Two-time newsmaker Jamey Barbas helped to refine ideas for repairing a subway tunnel in New York City, for example. That’s one of many stories about fixing aged transportation systems that are bound to be back in 2021. Architect and developer Robbie Ferris figured out how to fund badly needed schools in Jones County, N.C. Budgets and cost pressure are sure to be continuing themes in 2021. Cliff Fetner put together an app to match up contractors who have excess soil with others who need it. Technology and communication innovation will be in the lineup this year.

Up and down the roster of ENR’s Top 25 Newsmakers, there are critical issues that the industry must grapple with in 2021—issues you can be sure ENR will cover in the year ahead:

The need for creative leadership that leads to advanced transportation systems. The gradually unfolding revolution in mass timber construction. Design trends that reduce greenhouse gasses. Applying technology to making buildings safer. The ever-continuing struggle to control the pandemic so that life and commerce can move confidently into the future.

ENR’s coverage of the pandemic includes recognizing the enormous contributions of workers both on site and in the office to keeping the industry in business last year. For the first time ever, the editors honor a talented and hardworking group with a “plus one” Newsmaker award (see p. 38).

ENR commits to deploying its journalistic assets to bring you the news, data, analysis and commentary that you need to think through the issues you face on the job.

Top of the news this week is the new administration and Congress in Washington, D.C.—ENR has construction’s only Washington, D.C., news bureau.

Federal health policy will drive much of what happens as the U.S. seeks to control the coronavirus pandemic, and ENR’s award-winning journalists covering health and safety will be on the alert. Economic renewal will involve a historic infrastructure spending program. The news must go beyond the total dollars committed to explore how wisely and effectively the funds are used, and ENR’s dedicated economic journalists will be at the top of their game.

We bring you the information in print, newsletters, daily website updates, mobile products and through webinars and events like Top Young Professionals, FutureTech, BuildTech, Groundbreaking Women in Construction, Best Projects and the Top 25 Newsmakers.

We want to offer content in all the ways you want to use it. In 2021, ENR will remain deeply involved with what you are deeply concerned about—the most important projects, the best ways of designing and building and where the new talent will come from. 

Janice L. Tuchman
ENR Editor-in-Chief