Ted Scott
Office:
1600 Rosecrans Ave
Media Center, Fourth Floor
90266
City:
Los Angeles
State:
California
Country:
USA
Tel:
+1 310 321 7840

Questions and Answers:

Who's Who Legal Thought Leaders Global Elite

Mr Scott is a director of Secretariat International and manages their West Coast practice in the United States. He is a licensed civil engineer with over 20 years of experience in the construction industry, specialising in dispute resolution, delay and disruption analyses, cost overruns, scheduling and project controls. His experience spans a variety of large-scale infrastructure and commercial projects including airports, casinos, education, high-rise commercial/residential, highways and bridges, hospitals, hotels, judicial, oil and gas, ports, power, rail, stadiums, tunnels and water/wastewater treatment facilities.

What attracted you to working in the construction industry?

I come from a long line of engineers. Both my father and grandfather were in the US Army Corps of Engineers and from an early age I was immersed in army projects and bases around the world (Panama Canal, Mississippi River, etc).

What skills make a good consulting expert?

First and foremost, approaching an engagement with independence and integrity. Second, the ability to listen to your client so you can fully understand their needs and the needs of the engagement. Third, the technical ability to “solve the puzzle” including being able to find solutions when the answers are not so obvious. Finally, the ability to articulate your analysis and findings in a clear, easy-to-comprehend and persuasive way (both written and orally).

Do you favour a prospective approach or retrospective analysis of delay matters?

That seems to be the burning question in our industry. I think the analysis needs to be rooted in the facts, that is, it should not be hypothetical or theoretical (unless specified by the contract). However, it should also consider the contemporaneous views of the parties. An analysis will be more fully robust if approached from both angles.

Have you noticed any changes in the type or nature of construction disputes in recent years?

I’m seeing more claims being pursued against designers/engineers, by both owners and contractors. I’m also seeing a lot of contractors and subcontractors pursuing inefficiency/ disruption claims.

To what extent have companies’ attitudes toward pursuing claims changed over the course of your career?

There was a period after the financial crisis in 2008, where contractors, and particularly subcontractors, just wanted to settle as quickly as possible for cash flow reasons. As a result, I often felt they acquiesced to less favourable settlements. That trend seems to have reversed itself as contractors and subcontractors now seem to be more aggressive in pursuing claims.

How do you see the construction industry developing over the next five years?

Technology has been and will continue to advance rapidly. While BIM used to be cost-prohibitive to develop and therefore was only implemented on larger projects, it is now more affordable and can be used on projects of every size. I have seen BIM used quite powerfully, particularly in helping a tribunal visualise the impact of certain issues.

The use of drones to document progress and productivity is also gaining traction.

As managing director of Secretariat International, how do you expect to adapt the practice to address these developments?

Secretariat is a forward-thinking consultancy with a focus on staying current with developments in the construction industry. Thankfully, many of our clients are leaders in their field and are at the forefront of emerging technology. As a result, we are able to stay abreast of cutting-edge technology alongside our clients.

What advice would you give to younger experts hoping to one day be in your position?

There is nothing more important than your independence. Without it, an expert loses their credibility. This belief is at the core of Secretariat’s mission and something we built the company around.

Who's Who Legal Thought Leaders - Construction

Mr Scott is a director of Secretariat International and manages their West Coast practice in the United States. He is a licensed civil engineer with over 20 years of experience in the construction industry, specialising in dispute resolution, delay and disruption analyses, cost overruns, scheduling and project controls. His experience spans a variety of large-scale infrastructure and commercial projects including airports, casinos, education, high-rise commercial/residential, highways and bridges, hospitals, hotels, judicial, oil and gas, ports, power, rail, stadiums, tunnels and water/wastewater treatment facilities.

What attracted you to working in the construction industry?

I come from a long line of engineers. Both my father and grandfather were in the US Army Corps of Engineers and from an early age I was immersed in army projects and bases around the world (Panama Canal, Mississippi River, etc).

What skills make a good consulting expert?

First and foremost, approaching an engagement with independence and integrity. Second, the ability to listen to your client so you can fully understand their needs and the needs of the engagement. Third, the technical ability to “solve the puzzle” including being able to find solutions when the answers are not so obvious. Finally, the ability to articulate your analysis and findings in a clear, easy-to-comprehend, and persuasive way (both written and orally).

Do you favour a prospective approach or retrospective analysis of delay matters?

That seems to be the burning question in our industry. I think the analysis needs to be rooted in the facts, that is, it should not be hypothetical or theoretical (unless specified by the contract). However, it should also consider the contemporaneous views of the parties. An analysis will be more fully robust if approached from both angles.

Have you noticed any changes in the type or nature of construction disputes in recent years?

I’m seeing more claims being pursued against designers/engineers, by both owners and contractors. I’m also seeing a lot of contractors and subcontractors pursuing inefficiency/ disruption claims.

To what extent have companies’ attitudes to pursuing claims changed over the course of your career?

There was a period after the financial crisis in 2008, where contractors, and particularly subcontractors, just wanted to settle as quickly as possible for cash flow reasons. As a result, I often felt they acquiesced to less favourable settlements. That trend seems to have reversed itself as contractors and subcontractors now seem to be more aggressive in pursuing claims.

How do you see the construction industry developing over the next five years?

Technology has been and will continue to advance rapidly. While BIM used to be cost-prohibitive to develop and therefore was only implemented on larger projects, it is now more affordable and can be used on projects of every size. I have seen BIM used quite powerfully, particularly in helping a tribunal visualise the impact of certain issues.

The use of drones to document progress and productivity is also gaining traction.

As managing director of Secretariat International, how do you expect to adapt the practice to address these developments?

Secretariat is a forward-thinking consultancy with a focus on staying current with developments in the construction industry. Thankfully, many of our clients are leaders in their field and are at the forefront of the emerging technology. As a result, we are able to stay abreast of cutting-edge technology alongside our clients.

What advice would you give to younger experts hoping to one day be in your position?

There is nothing more important than your independence. Without it, an expert loses their credibility. This belief is at the core of Secretariat’s mission and something we built the company around.

Biographies:

Who's Who Legal Construction: Expert Witnesses

Mr Scott is a director of Secretariat International and manages their West Coast practice in the United States. He is a licensed civil engineer, with over 20 years of experience in the construction industry, specialising in dispute resolution, delay and disruption analyses, cost overruns, scheduling and project controls. His experience spans a variety of large-scale infrastructure and commercial projects including airports, casinos, education, high-rise commercial/residential, highways and bridges, hospitals, hotels, judicial, oil and gas, ports, power, rail, stadiums, tunnels and water/wastewater treatment facilities.

Mr Scott has been appointed as an expert on numerous disputes in Asia, Australia, Europe, North America and the Middle East. He has testified in US federal and state courts and in arbitrations (under ICC, AAA and JAMS rules) as an independent expert on matters of scheduling, project delay, loss of productivity and quantum.

Mr Scott is also an author and frequent speaker on a variety of construction related topics. He currently serves on the American Society of Civil Engineers’ committee for the development of a national standard for conducting CPM schedule delay analyses in construction.

Prior to working in the consulting field, Mr Scott worked both as a civil engineer and scheduler on several large highway and bridge projects gaining hands-on experience from the ground up.

Mr Scott received both a BS in civil engineering and an MBA from Virginia Tech.

WWL says: Ted Scott is “highly regarded among peers for his testimonial ability and technical expertise”, according to impressed interviewees.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Construction which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Consulting Experts: Experts - Construction - Quantum & Delay

Mr Scott is a managing director of Secretariat International and oversees their West Coast practice in the United States. He is a licensed civil engineer, specialising in dispute resolution, delay and disruption analyses, cost overruns, scheduling and project controls. With over 20 years in the construction industry, Mr Scott’s experience spans a variety of large-scale infrastructure and commercial projects including airports, casinos, education, high-rise commercial/residential, highways and bridges, hospitals, hotels, judicial, oil and gas, ports, power, rail, stadiums, tunnels and water/wastewater treatment facilities. 

Mr Scott has been appointed as an expert on numerous disputes in Asia, Australia, Europe, North America and the Middle East. He has testified in US federal and state courts and in arbitrations (under ICC, AAA and JAMS rules) as an independent expert on matters of scheduling, project delay, loss of productivity and quantum. 

Mr Scott is also an author and frequent speaker on a variety of construction related topics. He currently serves on the American Society of Civil Engineers' committee for the development of a national standard for conducting CPM schedule delay analyses in construction. 

Prior to working in the consulting field, Mr Scott worked both as a civil engineer and scheduler on several large highway and bridge projects gaining hands-on experience from the ground up. 

Mr Scott received both a BS in civil engineering and an MBA from Virginia Tech. 

WWL says: Ted Scott's vast experience in the construction industry makes him a go-to figure for complex arbitration disputes in the sector.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Consulting Experts which can be purchased from our Shop.

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