Engineers Australia

Use of Bayesian statistics with the observational method

Jinsong Huang, Richard Kelly, Lisa Li, Mark Cassidy and Scott Sloan


The observational method is one of the most successful processes in geotechnical engineering. Performance monitoring data are the most reliable information that engineers can use to predict future performance of geotechnical projects. This paper presents two examples where Bayesian statistical methods can be used for the prediction of future performance. The first example is to update the capacity of piles using load test results. The second example is to update embankment settlement predictions when field settlement monitoring data are available.