NZ Geomechanics News

Branch reports



Auckland has had three presentations since the start of the year. Turnout has been good with between 50 and 80 people in attendance.

The first presentation of the year was Laurie Wesley giving an overview of Bishop’s life and his contribution to soil mechanics.

In early May, Fred Baynes gave us all a great reminder about the importance of getting the ground model correct with his presentation titled ‘Guilty until proven innocent – one approach to managing geotechnical risk on major projects’.

Late in May Charlie Price summarised some of the more important and interesting papers from the 20th International Conference for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering. At this presentation he also presented the awards the winners of the Student Poster competition.

NZGS are grateful for the sponsorship we have received from RediRock and Geotechnics.

We have a number of high profile presentations for the second half of the year including Professor Eduardo Alonso giving his Rankine Lecture and Professor R. Kerry Rowe giving his Terzaghi Lecture.


The Wellington Branch hosted a fantastic joint presentation by Charlie Price and Gavin Alexander from BECA on 6th March. The presentation covered an overview of outstanding papers from 20th International Conference for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering and discussed performance of stone column foundation system subjected to severe earthquake loading.

A number of interesting presentations are in store for us. In late May, we have Professor D.V. Griffiths of Colorado School of Mines here to share observations on stability analysis in highly variable soils and to offer a paid course titled “ Quantitative Risk Assessment in Geotechnical Engineering”. On 5 September, Dr. Richard Kelly will talk about design and construction issues on soft ground. Rankine lecture; “triggering and motion of landslides” and Terzaghi lecture; “success and challenges of geosynthetics adopted in protecting our environment” are scheduled for 12 September and 3 October respectively. Location and other details will be confirmed later in the year.

We recently farewelled Nima Taghipouran, one of our four regional coordinators. He has moved to Dunedin and took up the regional coordinator’s role for Otago region at end of May. We wish him all the best.

We are always looking forward to hearing from you about future presentations, activities and sponsorship. Please get in touch
with us.


We have had  2 presentations so far this year.

On 15 March Charlie Price gave an interesting presentation to a small audience on key papers from the 20th International Conference for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering that was held in Seoul in Sept. 2017. Thanks to Stantec for providing the venue.

On 15 May Dr. Liam Wotherspoon provided another interesting presentation on Site Characterisation in New Zealand including results of recent research including the Nelson-Tasman urban area.  The meeting invite was extended out to ENZ members and we had a good turnout of 25 people. Thanks to WSP-Opus for providing the venue and sponsoring this meeting.

If local members have ideas for future presentation topics please contact


The Waikato Branch went on tour of the SH1 Waikato Expressway Huntly Section on 19 April with an all-star cast of tour guides including FH/HEB Project Director Tony Dickens and Construction Manager Tony Adams. Project Geotechnical Engineer Natasha Jokhan provided technical input on various design and construction aspects.

Thanks also to Tom Glenn and Shane Wilton for their technical inputs. The event was well attended by a good cross section of the Waikato geotechnical community. See the full page article for further details.

Upcoming events for the Waikato group include Liquefaction studies from several Waikato projects, short-presentation night, civil engineering laboratory visit TBC.



NZ Geomechanics News
NZ Geomechanics News>Issue 95 - June 2018
Society News

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