Structural Designer & Engineer



Karma Sonam

Date of Birth

December 25, 1970



Marital Status


Employment Status

July 1991 to October 2016 @ Ministry of Education (MoE), Thimphu

October 2016 to May 2021 @ Ministry of Works and Human Settlement (MoWHS), Thimphu

May 2021 to March 2022 @ Construction Development Board (CDB), Thimphu

Last Position Held

Administrative Head, Construction Development Board, Thimphu

Last Designation and Grade Held

Director, Construction Development Board, Grade EX3A

Permanent Address

House no. PHA-11-442

Thram No. 2, Norzin Lam

Thim Throm, Thimphu Thromde

Present Address

Changangkha, Thimphu





Year of Completion

Masters in Engineering (Structures)

Asian Institute of Technology, Bangkok, Thailand

2003 – 2004

Bachelors of Technology (B. Tech) – Civil

Regional Engineering Warangal, Warangal, Andhra Pradesh, India

1992 – 1996

Diploma in Civil Engineering

Royal Bhutan Polytechnic, Dewathang, Bhutan

1989 – 1991

Class X

Yangchenphug Central School, Thimphu

March 1988



Sl #

Course Title




Low Emissions Development Strategies (LEDS) for climate change and human settlements

May 20, 2019 to May 24, 2019

Advanced International Training Network, Bangkok, Thailand


Climate – Smart Land use Planning

Dec 15, 2017 to Dec 22, 2017

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


Asia Urban Governance Leaders Forum 2017

July 20, 2017 to July 22, 2017

Temasek Foundation International and Singapore Cooperation Enterprise, Singapore


Bhutan Executive Services Training (BEST – 5)

Jan 8, 2017 to Jan 21, 2017

RIGSS, Phuentsholing, Bhutan


17th batch Integrated Desuung Training

Oct 12, 2015 to Oct 24, 2015

Military Training Centre (MTC), Wangduephodrang


Senior Executive Leadership Program (SELP – 5)

Aug 17, 2015 to Sep 16, 2015

RIGSS, Phuentsholing, Bhutan


Earthquake Vulnerability Reduction (EVRC-9)

Apr 21, 2014 to Apr 30, 2014

ADPC, Bangkok, Thailand


Results-focused Project Design and Management Training, ADB

Aug 6, 2013 to Aug 7, 2013

ADB, Thimphu, Bhutan


Project Management and Site Supervision Program

Sep 21, 2009 to Oct 5, 2009

Development Finance Institute, Philippines


Productivity and Bench Marking in Construction Industry

July 18, 2005 to Aug 5, 2005

Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore


Construction Project Management Course

2 weeks (Aug 2001)

CACS, Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore


STAAD – III structural software course

July 5, 1999 to July 13, 1999

Royal Bhutan Polytechnic, Dewathang, Bhutan



Job Title


Director, Construction Development Board (May 14, 2021 to Mar 24, 2022

a)    Initiated the employability skills training for the new graduate engineers.

b)    Formulated the FDI guidelines for the Construction Services

c)    Formulated the Construction Safety Supervisor Training Course Outline

d)    Revamped the e-tool system incorporating employment opportunities for fresh graduate engineers.

e)    Revised the Refresher Course module for different class of contractors

Director, Department of Human Settlements, MoWHS (Oct 2016 to May 2021)

a)    Formulated the Comprehensive National Development Plan 2030

b)    Formulated the Spatial Planning Bill and Spatial Planning Rules & Regulations and Standards

c)    Prepared more than 50 Local Area Plans and Structure Plans across the country.

d)    Prepared the Strategic Report on Climate Smart Land use Planning.

e)    Formulated the Land Pooling & Land Re-adjustment 2018

f)     Formulated the National Human Settlement Policy 2019

g)    Formulated Tenancy Rules & Regulations 2018

h)   Formulated the Bhutan Building Rules 2018


Chief Engineer, School Planning & Building Division, Ministry of Education (2009 to Oct 2016

a)    Preparation of standard school designs namely classroom buildings, hostel buildings, multipurpose hall, kitchen & store, warden & matrons quarters, staff quarters and care takers quarters.

b)    Preparation of standard school sports facilities like football ground, basketball court, volleyball court, lawn tennis court and badminton court etc.

c)    Preparation of standard school furniture designs for Primary and Secondary students

d)    Conduct topographical survey of all the schools in Bhutan

e)    Preparing the School Master Plan incorporating future expansions.

f)     Preparation of Bill of Quantities of different type of buildings

g)    Implement centrally executed large school construction projects across the country

h)   Contract Administration and Project Management for school construction projects centrally executed.

i)     Tendering, Evaluation and Award of school construction projects to contractors.

j)      Preparation and verification of Running Account Bills and submit to the accounts section

k)    Periodic monitoring of construction sites executed by the Dzongkhags


In various capacities as Section Officer, Assistant Engineer, Deputy Executive Engineer and Executive Engineer in School Planning & Building Division, Ministry of Education (1991 to 2009)

2003 – 2009 : Executive Engineer/Dy Executive Engineer

a)     Started working as the Head of the Structural Unit. As of date, designed almost about 40 buildings of different shapes and sizes.

b)     Project Manager for the Government of India assisted Youth Center Project (about Nu. 86.00 million) in Thimphu

c)     Involved in Contract Administration and Project Management for the Government of India assisted school projects (about Nu. 434.00 million).

d)    Project Coordinator for the JICA assisted school projects

e)     Presently involved in the site monitoring for quality control and trouble shooting at all the school construction sites spread across the country.


August 2001 – April 2003

Went for studies to Thailand for Master of Technology in Structural Engineering.


May 1996 – August 2001 : Assistant Engineer

Responsible for structural designing of school infrastructures for the Second Education Project funded by the World Bank.

Periodic site monitoring and trouble shooting at various construction sites around the country.


October 1992 – April 1996

Went for studies to India for Bachelor of Technology in Civil Engineering.


January 1992 – August 1992 : Section Officer

Worked as the surveyor and surveyed almost over 25 to 30 school sites all over the country using EDM. Was also responsible for initial setting out of works and then monitoring and quality control.


August 1991 – December 1991 : Section Officer

Worked in the design unit with JOCV/VSO engineers and architects. Was involved in drawing checks and occasionally small design works under their supervision and preparation of Bill of Quantities.




Board Director and Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) member (2018 to 2021)

National Housing Development Corporation Limited (NHDCL), Thimphu

Board Member (2017 to 2021)

National Center for Hydrology and Meteorology (NCHM), Thimphu

Board Member (2010 to 2014)

Construction Development Board, Thimphu

Member of Building & Structural Engineering Standards Sub-Committee (BSESSC) (2010 to 2015)

Standards & Quality Control Authority, Ministry of Works and Human Settlements (now Bhutan Standards Bureau), Thimphu


Program Validation Committee member (2012)

For the Degree Course in Civil Engineering at College of Science and Technology, Rinchending, Bhutan


Resource Person (October 2007)

Imparting “Construction Management and Tendering Procedure” training to Class C and D contractors, organized by the Construction Development Board, Ministry of Works and Human Settlements

Civil Service Common Examination paper setter (2007 & 2009)

For the Technical Graduates for the year 2007 & 2009, Royal Civil Service Commission, Royal Government of Bhutan




·       Good knowledge of Structural Design Software STAAD Pro & ETABS

·       Good drawing skills and uses latest AutoCAD software

·       Good surveying skills and uses Total Station instrument and Surfer software

·       Good computer skills and very conversant with MS Office suite including Microsoft Project Manager.

·       Good knowledge in Construction Manager Software