Public lecture by Prof. Dirk E. Hebel at the ‘Advances in Cement and Concrete Technology in Africa’ (ACCTA) conference in Johannesburg, South Africa on January 28, 2013. The ACCTA 2013 is the first international conference initiated from the SPIN project (Spearhead network for innovative, clean and safe cement and concrete technologies), that is a cooperation between European and African leading research institutions from the fields of materials research. The conference aims to cross-link experts in the field of cement and concrete technology with key players from research institutions, industries, associations and policy-making bodies. The aim is to establish a sustainable and economically efficient cement and concrete technology in Africa with impact on the world-wide. A paper on ‘Bamboo Composite Reinforcements in Structural Concrete Applications’ by the Chair of Architecture and Construction Dirk E. Hebel of FCL Singapore was accepted by theACCTA peer review group for presentation.