Issue 105 - June 2023

International Society for Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering (ISRM)

ISRM Australasian Vice President

Our current ISRM VP for Australasia Sevda Dehkhoda will come to the end of her term this year. The Australasian VP role is for a four-year term and is rotated between our two countries, with Australia taking two terms followed by one for New Zealand (broadly proportional to our respective membership). AGS, with the support of NZGS has therefore nominated Dr Qianbing Zhang to be next Australasian VP. Dr Zhang is an Associate Professor at Monash University and a Chartered Professional Engineer. He has been active in the ISRM Rock Dynamics Commission and in the running of specialist ISRM conferences. He is also a previous runner up for the ISRM Rocha award. Dr Zhang’s appointment is subject to confirmation by the ISRM Council in Salzburg in October.

ISRM Congress 2031 Hosting Bid:

Following the award of the 2027 ISRM Congress to South Korea as reported previously, debriefs have been held with Tourism NZ and ChCh Convention Bureau. Both organisations were thanked for their generous support of our unsuccessful bid to host this event in Christchurch. Both organisations expressed support in principle for a further bid to host the 2031 Congress in New Zealand (Congress is held four-yearly). While this may seem a long way in the future, one of the lessons from our Christchurch bid is that a long lead time is required for these submissions and it is unusual for a candidate National Group to be successful first time around. 

NZGS Committee at the December 2022 management committee meeting has also expressed support in principle for a further bid to host in 2031.

Earthquakes in Turkey, 6 February 2023

A quick report on the M7.8 and M7.6 Pazarcik and Ekinözü earthquakes in Türkiye on 6 February 2023 is now available on the ISRM website. Authored by Ömer AYDAN and Reşat ULUSAY, the report has the stated purpose “to provide an overview of various aspects of the inter/intraplate type earthquakes for researchers”. The report also provides a well-illustrated general interest guide to the geological background and devastating effects of these earthquakes.

Board and Council Meetings

The 2023 ISRM Board, Commissions and Council meetings will be held as part of the 2023 ISRM Congress in Salzburg, Austria on October 9th 2023.

ISRM Awards:

Rocha Medal:

Nominations are now open for the 2025 Rocha Medal. The Rocha Medal is intended to stimulate young researchers in the field of rock mechanics. The prize, a bronze medal and a cash prize, have been annually awarded since 1982 for an outstanding doctoral thesis selected by a Committee appointed for the purpose. Nomination must reach the ISRM Secretary-General by 31 December 2023. Self-nominations are accepted

This and other awards, individual and corporate, together with nomination procedures are set out in the Awards page of the ISRM website.

Key International Symposia 2023-2024

  • 2023 ISRM 15th International Congress, Salzburg, Austria 9-14 October 2023. 
  • Eurock 2024 – New Challenges in Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering – an ISRM Regional Symposium – Alicante, Spain, 15-19 July 2024
  • 2024 ISRM International Symposium: ARMS13 – 13th Asian Rock Mechanics Symposium Advances in Rock Mechanics – Infrastructure Development – New Delhi, India, 24-28 September 2024

Other regional events and specialised conferences are listed on the ISRM website.


The latest ISRM newsletter (No 61 dated March 2023) is available on the ISRM website

ISRM Online Lectures

The 41st ISRM online lecture was delivered by Professor Norikazu Shimizu, from Japan. The title of the lecture is “Monitoring rock displacements using satellite technology”. 

The 42nd online lecture will be delivered by Prof. Antonio Bobet on 22 June

ISRM Digital Library – Free Access

The ISRM Digital Library is hosted by the OnePetro platform ( Individual members can download up to 100 papers per year from ISRM meetings; Corporate members can download 250 papers per year. To download the ISRM papers free of charge, ISRM members must perform a two-step registration on the OnePetro website: 

  1. Register in the OnePetro website, using any username/password they choose. If the member has already registered at OnePetro, it is not necessary to register again. 

2. Enter their current ISRM username/password in the OnePetro Membership page. 

The OnePetro site automatically checks the status of ISRM membership with ISRM.

Young Professionals’ Webinars

The ISRM Young Rock Engineers group have established the very successful ISRM Young Members Monthly Seminars. These provide an excellent opportunity for current postgraduate students, researchers and early career professionals to present their work. Anyone wishing to present at one of these events should contact Romy Ridl, our ISRM YGP coordinator. Eleven seminars have been held to date. The most recent presentations (6 December 2022) were:

  • Modelling the time dependent behaviour of fractured zone around underground storage structure in argilites by Sophie Jung (France)
  • Challenges in the Lyon-Turin base tunnel project by Alessandra Insana (Italy).

These and previous presentations may be viewed on the ISRM Young Members Youtube Channel

Paul Horrey


Romy Ridl

NZGS ISRM YGP Coordinator

Tags : #ISRM

Issue 105 - June 2023, NZ Geomechanics News
Paul Horrey, Romy Ridl
Issue 105 - June 2023, NZ Geomechanics News
International Report

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