Dr. Behr has made contributions in a variety of Structural Engineering research areas. His earlier research focused on the structural performance and durability of building enclosure systems subjected to severe windstorm, earthquake and accelerated weathering effects. His work emphasized experimental structural engineering as applied to glass and aluminum curtain wall systems for multi-story buildings.
On the instructional side, Professor Behr developed and implemented innovative teaching techniques for structural engineering and engineering mechanics at the university level. His computer assisted, small-scale, structural model mini-laboratory, "AN/EX," received considerable interest from engineering educators and received sustained support from the National Science Foundation.
As a Senior Research Engineer at the Atlantic Richfield Corporation, Dr. Behr organized, conducted and administered research projects supporting the development of ice load structural design criteria for offshore arctic drilling platforms. Prior to that, he played a principal role in developing an earth-sheltered housing research program at Texas Tech University.
Dr. Behr has published numerous papers in a variety of respected engineering journals and has presented his work at major technical conferences in the United States and abroad. He has been awarded three patents.
Dr. Behr served as Head of the Department of Architectural Engineering at Penn State University from 1997 – 2007, after which he was appointed the Charles and Elinor Matts Professor of Architectural Engineering and Director of the Penn State Smart Spaces Center for successful aging in place. He was named Dean of the U.A. Whitaker College of Engineering at Florida Gulf Coast University in 2012.
Dr. Behr earned his BS and MS degrees in Civil Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and his Ph.D. degree in Civil Engineering from Texas Tech University.