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Society of Petroleum Engineers Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (ATCE)

27–29 October 2014 RAI Centre Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Special Events

Saturday, 25 October


SPE Petroleum Engineering Certification Exam

SPE will offer a certification exam for members interested in becoming certified under the SPE Petroleum Engineering Certification Programme*. This programme provides E&P professionals an opportunity to validate technical knowledge, show a commitment to professionalism, obtain a recognised credential, and achieve employer and peer recognition. Register for the exam and download the exam study guide at www.spe.org/certification. Applications for the exam must be completed two weeks prior to the exam session.

* SPE Certification is a credential of technical knowledge as demonstrated by exam. SPE Certification does not constitute a license to practice petroleum engineering or permit the use of the title engineer in public or on legal documents.


Sunday, 26 October


Section Officer Workshop



Student Meet and Greet

Make friends from around the world! SPE will have special activities at this event to help you meet and get to know other students.

Sponsored by



Student General Session and Awards Luncheon

Seating is limited, so students must reserve a ticket during the registration process. During the general session, students can learn more about their future professional careers. SPE will also honour the Gold Standard Achievement Student Chapter winners, regional winners for the SPE Outstanding Student Chapters, and scholarship winners.



Special Event: Drilling Systems Automation Symposium

Automation: Perspectives

Pietro Baglioni, ExoMars Rover Manager at ESA and Andrew Bowyer of Magna Parva will give their perspectives on automation issues and the role automation will play in investigating the Martian environment in the upcoming 2018 ExoMars mission, including ultrasonic drilling technology. After an open discussion, a panel of four speakers will give their perspectives on drilling systems automation within the oilfield: where it is now, where it is going, barriers and opportunities.

Guest Speakers:

  • Pietro Baglioni, ESA
  • Andrew Bowyer, Magna Parva


  • Gregers Kudsk, VP Technical, Maersk Drilling
  • Paul Pastusek, Drilling Mechanics Advisor, ExxonMobil
  • Joop Roodenberg, CEO, Huisman
  • Ingolf Wassermann, Manager Drilling Automation Program, Baker Hughes



Drilling Systems Automation Technical Section Reception

Sponsored by



Digital Energy Technical Section (DETS) Dinner (Ticketed Event)

The digital oilfield, a visionary concept a decade ago, is becoming a reality as our day-to-day operations are being transformed and new processes being enabled through widespread adoption of information technology.  During this past decade we have also witnessed an accelerated rate of change in IT.  To wit, the explosive growth in our capacity to generate and analyze data, in cyber security challenges, in the adoption of mobile and social computing, in the maturity of cloud computing and services.  Information growth is further complicated by complex interactions resulting from development of difficult resources and increasing regulatory requirements.  The Oil and Gas industry is one of the most sophisticated generators and users of data in the world.

Attend this dinner to hear about the Digital Energy Technical Section's activities and how thought leaders see the future of the oil and gas industry.  Hear a keynote from an industry leader on the progress of adoption of Digital Energy.  Join other DETS members and top professionals to network, share technical information and exchange ideas through informal discussions.

Sponsored by




Research and Development Technical Section Dinner

Attend this event which will feature a presentation from two key speakers about technology development and the need for more radical innovation to meet the future challenges in the oil and gas industry. 

Moderator: Mariano Gurfinkel, Hess Corporation, Chair, SPE R&D Technical Section 


  • Gerald Schotman, Royal Dutch Shell 
  • Greg Herrera, EnergyVentures 
  • Eric Gebhardt, GE Oil and Gas


Monday, 27 October


R&D Competition

Six finalists are ready to compete in the SPE Research & Development Competition at ATCE this year.  The finalists will present their proposal in a special session to a panel of industry judges. Awards of USD 30,000 for first place, USD 20,000 for second place, and USD 10,000 for third place will be announced at the President’s Luncheon on the last day of the conference. Learn more about the competition and finalists.



25-Year/Century Club Breakfast

The 25-Year/Century Club Committee will host a seated breakfast in the Europe Foyer 1 with a keynote presentation by 2004 SPE President Kate Hadley Baker. All members are welcome to purchase a ticket.

The 25-Year/Century Club also provides a special lounge for SPE members with 25 years or more of continuous membership, Century Club members, current and former SPE Board officers and directors, Distinguished and Honorary members, as well as this year’s SPE International Award Winners and Distinguished Lecturers. The lounge will be open daily, Sunday – Tuesday, 0800-1600 and on Wednesday, 0800-1400.



Student PetroBowl and Reception

ATCE’s most competitive event! Student chapter teams from around the world compete in a tournament-style contest that tests knowledge of the E&P industry as well as SPE.

PetroBowl Sponsored by

PetroBowl Reception and Scholarships Sponsored by





Opening General Session: Affordable Energy

As the world’s population grows and standards of living rise in developing countries, the demand for energy continues to increase, likely doubling between 2000 and 2050. However, governments, industries and consumers alike must be able and willing to pay the price for that energy.

“Affordable energy”, has many facets that must be considered. Climate change may cause more extreme weather (higher rainfall, surging waves, and drought) that require existing and new facilities to be adapted. Water use and consumption by the oil and gas industry is coming under scrutiny, requiring more sophisticated and thus more expensive solutions.  Public and government concerns about our industry’s safety and environmental record may lead to more stringent policies and regulations that have their own price tag.

Against these pressures, other forms of energy are competing with the traditional energy carriers. In the global energy market of the future, the oil and gas industry must keep costs under control, manage environmental impacts, and advocate sound policy decisions so that it can continue to offer energy that the world can afford. The expertise and ingenuity of oil and gas professionals are required to enable our industry to identify and pull all the levers at our disposal to enable the world to prosper.

Moderator: Maryam Nemazee, Journalist and Broadcaster
Panel Members:

  • Chris Besson, Senior Energy Analyst, International Energy Agency (IEA)
  • Neil Duffin, President, ExxonMobil Development Company
  • Phillipe Barril, President and Chief Operating Officer, Technip
  • Gustavo Hernandez, Director General, PEMEX Exploration & Production



Chairman’s Luncheon

The ATCE 2014 General Chair, Matthias Bichsel, Director Projects and Technology for Shell will share his insights on the oil and gas industry.



Sustainability Task Force Special Session

People, Profit, Planet: Advancing Practices that Balance Economic Growth, Social Development, and Environmental Protection Today and in the Future. In this 3-hour session introduced by 2014 SPE
President Jeff Spath, operations managers and sustainability practitioners will consider why the
world outside our sector is becoming increasingly relevant and even an important source of business value. Specific areas of stakeholder engagement, local content, and strategic social investments will
be featured. Don’t miss this learning from a panel lineup which includes Alyson Warhurst, Egbert
Imomoh, Stephen Newton, and Annette Stube.

Moderator: Johana Dunlop, SPE Sustainability Task Force, Chairperson

  • Introduction:  Jeff Spath, SPE President
    Overview of the topic of sustainability and why SPE has begun work in this area.
  • Alyson Warhurst, founder and CEO Maplecroft
    What is all the fuss about? – a high level view on the need for sustainable company behaviour
  • Stephen Newton, CEO, Equitable Origin
    Understanding the value from engaging your stakeholders
  • Egbert Imomoh, Non-Executive Chairman and co-founder AFREN PLC and 2013 SPE President
    Local content - opportunity or challenge?
  • Annette Stube, Group Head of Sustainability, Maersk
    Strategic social investments – shaping the future

The session will conclude with a plenary panel discussion and questions from the audience.



Welcome Reception on Exhibition Floor



College and University Alumni Receptions

Many universities have scheduled alumni receptions to coincide with ATCE 2014. These events provide excellent opportunities for attendees to visit and get reacquainted with old friends, and to build new relationships with other professionals.

  • 1800–1945
    University of Kansas Alumni Reception
    Haesje Claes Restaurant
    Spuistraat 275
    1012 VR Amsterdam
    Tel: 31.20.6249998
  • 1730–1930
    Marietta College Alumni Reception
    Artemis Hotel
    John M. Keynesplein 2
    1066 EP Amsterdam
    Tel: 31.20.7141000
  • 1730–1900
    University of Aberdeen Alumni Reception
    Hotel Okura Amsterdam – Griffioen Room
    Ferdinand Bolstraat 333
    1072 LH Amsterdam
    Tel: 31.20.6787794
  • 1730–1900
    The University of Tulsa Alumni Reception
    Hotel Okura Amsterdam – Heian I Room
    Ferdinand Bolstraat 333
    1072 LH Amsterdam
    Tel: 31.20.6787794


Van Gogh Museum Reception

The museum contains the world’s largest collection of paintings by Vincent van Gough. There will be an opportunity to tour the museum, network with colleagues, and enjoy canapes and beverages. This is a ticketed event.

Sponsored by



Petroleum Data-Driven Analytics Section Reception

Big Data:  Myth or Reality?

Ronald Cramer from Shell Projects and Technology, and Nicholas Clarke from Tessella, will offer interesting and provocative presentations on Big Data in the Oil and Gas field. Attend this Reception to hear how far the PD2A Technical Section has come since its launch at ATCE 2012!  Join top professionals and your fellow peers to network, share technical information and exchange ideas and information on this exciting new field.  


  • Shawn Shirzadi, Data Analytics Program Manager at BP – Chair of PD2A Technical Section


  • Ronald Cramer, Principal Optimization Engineer, Shell Projects and Technology
  • Nicholas Clarke, Head of Analytics, Tessella

Sponsored by



Projects, Facilities, and Construction Dinner

Decommissioning – The Projects, Facilities and Construction Challenges
Over the next several years, the E&P industry faces a major challenge in the increasing number of platforms that will be decommissioned. Executing these projects in a way that is economical, safe, socially acceptable, and environmentally sound will present many technical, operational, and project management problems.
This panel discussion will bring together leaders from the major oil and gas companies to discuss the facilities, project and construction related issues involved in:

  • The various phases of a decommissioning project
  • Developing robust standards and procedures for execution
  • The facilities design features that can greatly simplify and facilitate eventual decommissioning
  • The important factors that control the timeline and economics
  • How to capture and implement learnings, and how to achieve continuous improvement
  • The associated hazards and risks
  • Environmental factors that must be overcome and which must be met

Sponsored by


Tuesday, 28 October


Breakfast Honoring Distinguished Lecturers and their Companies


Mexico’s Upstream Reform Breakfast

This talk will describe the scope of Mexico’s Upstream Reform, the elements included in it, the new attributions of the National Hydrocarbon Commission—the Upstream regulator, a description of the areas and fields that have been granted to Pemex as a result of Round Zero, and a detailed description of the exploratory areas and development fields that will be included in Round One, including Pemex’s farm-outs.


  • Edgar R. Rangel Germán, Commissioner
    Comisión Nacional de Hidrocarburos



International Student Paper Contest—Undergraduate and Master’s Divisions

Watch presenters from around the world compete in the undergraduate and master’s divisions.



Student Chapter Faculty Advisor Session



Soft Skills Workshop I (includes lunch)

This workshop will focus on some of the critical soft skills needs for future professionals across the workforce generations. Includes lunch.

Organised by the Soft Skills Council, Young Professionals Co-ordinating Committee, and the Talent Council.



Expo Luncheon on Exhibition Floor



YP Workshop



Soft Skills Workshop II (includes lunch)

This workshop will focus on some of the critical soft skills needs for future professionals across the workforce generations. Includes lunch.

Organised by the Soft Skills Council, Young Professionals Co-ordinating Committee, and the Talent Council.



Research and Development Technical Section Topical Luncheon

The SPE Research and Development Technical Section (RDTS) will host a special topical luncheon to facilitate focused dialogue on Emerging Technologies in Exploration and Production.

In a series of informative and thought provoking presentations, a panel of industry experts will discuss trends for cost reduction and improving return on investment through emerging drilling and production technologies and new exploration techniques for oil and gas resources.  Panel question and answer session will follow the presentations.


SPE R&D Technical Section Overview and Activities

  • Mariano Gurfinkel, RDTS Chair

Topical Luncheon panel session – Presentations and Discussions

  • Moderator: Tom Tilton

Featured Panelists

  • Jan Grimnes, Foster Finlay Associates 
  • Bill Kline, ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company 
  • Ben van den Brule, Shell Technology  



Wellbore Positioning Technical Section Topical Luncheon

Why did Your Reservoir Just Move?

Geophysicists and geologists deal with uncertainty on a daily basis, but expect their down hole well surveys to be absolutely precise. Reality is that poor survey practices and bad assumptions can introduce depth and other errors that severely affect reservoir position and estimates, potentially impacting company stock valuations. Industry experts will present on the scale of the problem, along with practical means to improve understanding of your reservoir.  The session will conclude with a panel discussion of audience questions.


  • Robert Wylie, Product Line Director, NOV


  • Professor Angus Jamieson, University of Highlands and Islands.
  • A.M. (Ton) Loermans, Retired



International Student Paper Contest—PhD Division

Watch presenters from around the world compete in the PhD division.



Special Session



Happy Hour on Exhibition Floor



YP Reception



Annual Reception and Banquet

Join us to celebrate key successes within SPE and the oil and gas industry as a whole. Prior to the Annual Banquet, all banquet attendees are invited to gather for a reception in the Beurs Van Berlage. The Annual Banquet recognises outstanding SPE members who have made significant contributions to the industry.

Beurs van Berlage (Stock Exchange by Berlage), was built between 1898 and 1903 by the prominent Dutch architect of the 20th century Hendrik Petrus Berlage (1856-1934). Berlage constructed the Beurs on the newly created piece of land obtained by covering the city's oldest harbour basin located in the very centre of Amsterdam.

The architectural importance of the Berlage Beurs lays in its original volume and the new aesthetics it proposed at the time. Here is the sober brick building, which does not try to imitate gothic or renaissance style as all important city buildings in Amsterdam erected at the end of the 19th century do (just to name Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum, Central Station, Stadsschouwburg), but establishes its own, new style.
Beurs van Berlage was an innovative building, which brought international recognition to its creator and influenced other architects throughout the Netherlands, especially from the Amsterdam School movement.


Wednesday, 29 October


Energy4me Teacher Workshop, RAI Centre

Energy4me, SPE’s energy education outreach programme, will invite Amsterdam classroom teachers (of ages 8-18) to attend a free, one-day energy education workshop. Educators will receive comprehensive, objective information about the scientific concepts of energy and its importance while discovering the world of oil and natural gas exploration and production.



Energy4me Student Energy Event, RAI Centre

Energy4me, SPE’s energy education outreach programme, is educating the next generation of aspiring engineers, scientists and managers about the oil and gas industry. Secondary students will see firsthand the exciting opportunities in the oil and gas industry. Students will have the opportunity to perform hands-on experiments and explore advanced technology on the exhibition floor.



Special Session: Oil and Gas Industry Image—Knowledge Versus Perception, RAI Centre

This session presents thought leadership on the role that hydrocarbons play in everyday life and the cross-discipline and cross-market challenges faced by the oil and gas industry. This session is organised by the Europec team.

Session Chairs: Astley Hastings, University of Aberdeen; Ben Stewart, Halliburton; Francesca Verga, Politecnico di Torino

Facilitator: Peter Gaffney, Dominie Enterprises Ltd


  • Frank Schuller, Trinity College, Oxford
  • Deborah Shields, Colorado State University
  • Pete Smith, Aberdeen University



President’s Luncheon and Annual Meeting of Members

ATCE wraps up with a favourite tradition, showcasing 2014 SPE President Jeff Spath’s presentation on new achievements at SPE and upcoming initiatives. Notable volunteers and outstanding SPE Sections will also be recognised, and attendees will also have the opportunity to meet SPE Board members and 2015 SPE President Helge Hove Haldorsen.

Sponsored by





Netherlands Section Event: Gas or Windmills—The Silence of a Lion?

This interative panel discussion will highlight current North Sea challenges, specifically for the Netherlands, that relate to a mature basin producing mostly gas using aging infrastructure. Future abandonment costs along with the effects of oil and gas developments are driving the need for a new approach. Gary Hays will moderate the session while the audience will also participate by voting on probing questions.


  • Jan-Willem van Hoogstraten, TAQA, Managing Director Netherlands
  • Alexander Kemp, University of Aberdeen, Professor
  • Berend Scheffers, EBN, Director Technology
  • Karin Hoeing, Schlumberger, Managing Director/Geomarket Manager UK, Netherlands, Denmark
  • Kees Van Noort, IEA, Senior Energy Analyst