2020 AGS Victorian Symposium

Sustainable Geotechnics – Excellence in Planning, Design and Construction

Professor Arul Arulrajah, Patrick Wong and Ross Roberts

The Victorian Chapter of the Australian Geomechanics Society (AGS) is pleased to announce the 2020 AGS Victorian Symposium titled “Sustainable Geotechnics – Excellence in Planning, Design and Construction” to be held on 18 November 2020.

The Symposium forms part of the continuing programme of events organised by the Victorian Chapter of the AGS. Its purpose is to provide a forum for the dissemination of technical information in relation to sustainable geotechnical engineering practice, with a specific focus on sustainable planning, design and construction approaches.

Event Description

At the start of a new decade, our society faces many challenges of which engineers and geo-professionals are at the forefront. These challenges include managing our limited resources, finding new sources of energy generation, minimising waste, managing contaminated sites, and the risks and hazards associated with a changing climate. Addressing these challenges requires the innovative use of optimised and lean investigation, design and construction methods, use of alternative or recycled products, and finding ways to “do more with less”. This Symposium will present overviews of current state-of-the-art practices, innovation, new research results and case studies related to sustainable practice in geotechnics, with a specific focus on planning, design and construction activities. Sustainability is often not explicitly discussed in our industry – this Symposium provides geo-professionals with an exciting opportunity to help define what it means for our profession.

The Symposium will bring together professional engineers, geologists, geophysicists, researchers, specialist contractors, regulators, educators and students to share and discuss their experiences on the topic of sustainable geotechnics. Best practices, case histories and innovative solutions for dealing with these challenges will be presented and discussed, with an emphasis on the geotechnical challenges affecting the Melbourne region and regional areas of Victoria. This Symposium is aimed at professionals across the entire geotechnical industry, and participation is particularly encouraged from practitioners working in small to medium contractors and consultancies, along with those in larger firms or academia.


Ticket sales have now closed.

Tickets can be purchased until 6pm, November 16th

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Upon purchase an email will be sent to attendees. You will be registered to attend the symposium and a link to the online event will be sent closer to the event date.

About the speakers

Professor Arul Arulrajah Swinburne University

Professor Arul Arulrajah leads the Geotechnical Engineering group at Swinburne University of Technology. Arul has been involved as a Chief Investigator in 28 research projects totalling AUD$11.5 Million which includes 4 ARC Linkage grants, 1 ARC Training Centre, 3 ARC LIEF, 15 competitive state government grants and 6 industry grants. He is the first-named investigator and project leader in 19 projects totalling AUD$2.6 Million.

He is involved in geotechnical engineering research topics such as recycled materials, ground improvement, pavement geotechnics, in-situ testing, field instrumentation, land reclamation, dredging and deep compaction works. He has supervised 12 PhD students to completion in this area of geotechnical and sustainability research. He is presently the Deputy Training Centre Director and Technical Program Coordinator for the ARC Training Centre for Advanced Technologies in Rail Track Infrastructure.

Professor Arulrajah is the author of 2 books, 5 book chapters, 290 journal publications and 93 conference publications to date. His research has been recognised by international and Australian awards. This includes the Telford Premium Award from the Institution of Civil Engineers, UK (2009), Australian Pavement and Recycling Association Highly Commended Awards for Excellence in Sustainability and Research (2018 and 2012) and the Shamsher Prakash Prize for Excellence in the Practice of Geotechnical Engineering (2010). He is also the recipient of 4 Swinburne Vice Chancellor Awards and 2 Swinburne Researcher Awards for his research activities.

He has extensive experience in the geotechnical engineering design, site implementation and project management of numerous large civil engineering infrastructure projects in Australia, Singapore and Malaysia, based on his 14 years of industry experience prior to joining Swinburne in 2006.

Patrick Wong PKW Geosolutions

Patrick has been a consulting geotechnical engineer since graduating from The University of Sydney with First Class Honours in Civil Engineering in 1978.

Patrick joined the Coffey Group in 1979, and has held various leadership positions within Coffey including directorship of the operating company during the period 1991 to 1993, and Manager of Eastern Region during 1995 to 2000. Patrick has a wide range of geotechnical design expertise, including deep basements, deep foundations, soft ground engineering and ground improvement.

As well as all states of Australia, Patrick has conduct major projects in countries such as South Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, United Kingdom, Dubai, Jordan and Egypt.

Patrick currently runs his own consultancy PKW Geosolutions Pty Ltd and is a Senior Consultant at Coffey Services Australia Pty Ltd where he continues to enjoy the role of technical leadership on major projects and mentoring of staff.

Ross Roberts Auckland City Council

Ross is an engineering geologist with a keen interest in geohazards and sustainable development. He is currently Chair of the New Zealand Geotechnical Society as well as Auckland Council’s Geotechnical and Geological Practice Lead which involves managing the geotechnical risk across the Auckland metropolitan area.

He has worked for consultants and contractors on projects including major highway construction, railway asset management, water pipeline scheme assessments, landslide assessment and remediation, microtunneling and bridge foundation design. His current focus is on improving the resilience of development in New Zealand while minimising the impacts.

Engineers Australia members participating in AGS technical sessions can record attendance on their personal CPD logs. Members should refer to Engineers Australia CPD policy for details on CPD types, requirements and auditing guidelines.