AGS VIC Symposium 2017 – Fully subscribed

This event is fully subscribed, no further registrations will be accepted.


The Event

The reactive soils of the Melbourne region form a large portion of its complex and variable geology. In particular, the basaltic volcanics situated to the north and west of Melbourne, which cover some 40% of the Melbourne region, present numerous geotechnical challenges, particularly for lightly loaded structures.

The geotechnical design and behaviour of lightly loaded structures on reactive soils is one aspect of geotechnical engineering where the public tend to have greater awareness, which is often not the case for the variety of soil and rock mechanics problems geotechnical engineers deal with. This is often borne out through their experience with their own residence, and rightly or wrongly, this contributes greatly to the public’s perception of the geotechnical profession.

Light structuresThis symposium will deal with a variety of geotechnical challenges associated with reactive soils including residential slabs and footings and other lightly loaded structures, retaining walls, road, pavements and other sensitive infrastructure that interact with reactive soils and will bring together practitioners from consulting, construction and academia to share and discuss their experiences on the topic of reactive soils and their related geotechnical applications. Best practices, case histories and innovative solutions for dealing with these challenges will be presented and discussed, with a particular emphasis on the geotechnical issues affecting the Melbourne region and regional areas of Victoria.

About the Keynote Speakers

Professor Nasser KhaliliNasser Khalili

Head of Geotechnical Engineering
University of New South Wales

Professor Khalili has extensive experience in the field of geotechnical engineering both as a consultant and as an academic/researcher for more than 25 years. Prior to joining The University of New South Wales in 1993, Professor Khalili was responsible for managing the geotechnical group in the Chicago Office of the consulting firm Dames & Moore. He is currently the President of the Australian Association for Computational Mechanics (AACM), a member of the Institution of Engineers Australia, and a member of Australian Geomechanics Society. He is also a core member of the International Technical Committee on Unsaturated Soil (TC106). Professor Khalili’s research interests lie primarily in the areas of mechanics of unsaturated soils, soil plasticity, and mechanics of multi-phase multi porous media.

DR Chris HaberfieldChris Haberfield

Golder Associates

Chris Haberfield is a Principal of Golder Associates Pty Ltd. He has extensive experience in foundation design and analysis including those for many tall buildings in Australia and throughout the Middle East. Chris has published in excess of 140 refereed papers and was awarded the 2007 E H Davis Memorial Lecture by the AGS for his work in foundations in weak rock and the Gregory Tschebotarioff Lecture 2017 for contributions to soil structure interaction analysis by the ISSMGE. Chris is a member of the ISSMGE Technical Committee TC 207 Soil-structure interaction and retaining walls and Chairman of the sub-committee TC207 Foundation Structure interaction. Chris is also a member of the working group currently preparing a “Joint Submission from the Institute Public Works Engineering Australia (Vic) and Engineers Australia to the Victorian Building Authority on Slab Heave”.

Dr Don Cameron

Adjunct Senior Research Fellow
University of South Australia

Don is a dedicated researcher having worked at CSIRO in Melbourne for 11 years after completing a Masters by research in 1975. He then joined University of South Australia, lecturing mainly in geomechanics for 26 years. In 2005 he was awarded a PhD from the University of Sydney for his study on the performance of plastic pipes buried in sand under construction wheel loading. After taking early retirement in February 2014, Don continued his research interests by helping to supervise postgraduates at University of South Australia. His research interests have included expansive clays, collapsing soils, design of footings for houses and the drying of clay soil by trees. This particular research has led to implementation in Australian Standards. Pavement engineering has since become a strong research focus and includes sustainable aggregates from recycled C&D waste, additives for in-situ recycling and the influence of soil suction on subgrades and on unbound granular materials. Don has around 130 peer reviewed publications and has served as a reviewer for many geotechnical and civil engineering journals, as well serving as an examiner of higher degree theses.

Professor Emad GadEmad Gad

Dean of Engineering
Swinburne University of Technology

Professor Emad Gad is the Dean of Engineering at Swinburne University of Technology. He is a civil engineer with extensive experience in structural dynamics, residential construction and structural connections. His applied research has contributed to the development of several standards and codes of practice. He is Chair of the Board of the Australian Engineered Fasteners and Anchors Council (AEFAC), Co-Editor of the Australian Journal of Structural Engineering, appointment member of the Victorian Government Building Advisory Council (BAC) and Fellow of Engineers Australia.

Event Sponsors


Venue location

Further information

For further information please contact the Chair of the organising committee:

Daniel King
Golder Associates
Building 7, Botanicca Corporate Park
570 – 588 Swan Street, Richmond, VIC, 3121
Phone: +61 3 8862 3714
Email: [email protected]


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.