Prof. Dr. Harry G. Poulos

Prof. Dr. Harry G. Poulos


Professor Harry Poulos' pioneering work in pile foundation analysis and design has enabled the world's geotechnical specialists to have a greater understanding of the way structures interact with the ground. His research has enabled a more reliable approach to be adopted for pile design, replacing procedures which previously relied purely on experience and empiricism.

Professor Poulos has applied his research to a wide range of major projects, both in Australia and overseas, including buildings, bridges, tunnels, freeways, mines, airports offshore structures (e.g. oil rigs) and earthquake-related problems. Professor Poulos' work includes the Emirates Twin Towers in Dubai, where his analysis and design of the piled raft foundations provided significant cost benefits for the twin towers exceeding 300 metres in height, the Burj Khalifa, now the world's tallest building, where he was the geotechnical peer reviewer, the Docklands project in Melbourne involving design of remedial pile foundations for one of the high rise residential developments, and the construction of a 700km long motorway in Greece using his expertise in slope stabilisation and earthquake engineering.

While retaining his professorial position at the University of Sydney, Professor Poulos joined the Coffey Group in 1989, as the Director of Advanced Technology, and became Chairman of Coffey International Pty Ltd in 1991, a position that he held for two years. In the period 1998 to 2002 he served as Director of Technical Innovation and General Manager, Technical Development.

Professor Poulos has long been a contributor to the activities of the international geotechnical community. He was also a long-term member of the National Committee of the Australian Geomechanics Society (AGS) (1980 to 1995) and its Chairman from 1982 to 1984. He was Committee Member of the AGS Sydney Group, 1971-76, 1979-2002, Vice-chairman 1974 and Chairman 1980-81. He was the Australasian Vice-President of the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering in the period 1989-1994, an appointed Board Member of the Society from 2001 to 2005, and is currently the Chair of the Membership, Practitioner and Academic Committee of the Society.

He was recognised by his peers for his contributions to Australian Geomechanics by the Sydney Chapter via the institution of the annual Poulos Lecture in 2002.

Professor Poulos is a recipient of many prizes and awards, including Australia's Centenary Medal (2003) for his services to Australian society and science in the field of geotechnical engineering. His overall contribution to the engineering profession has been recognised formally by the award of Member of the Order of Australia (1993), his election as Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science (1988), his Fellowship of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (1996), his Honorary Fellowship of the Institution of Engineers Australia (1999), the award of the Warren Prize (1972) and Warren Medal (1985) of the Institution of Engineers, Australia, his selection as the 2003 Australian Civil Engineer of the year, and his selection in 2004 as the inaugural Geotechnical Practitioner of the year.

Professor Poulos gave the prestigious Rankine Lecture of the Institution of Civil Engineers (UK) in 1989, and was invited by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) to deliver the annual Terzaghi lecture in 2004. He also received from ASCE the 1972 Croes medal, the 1995 State of the Art Award, and the 2007 Middlebrooks Award. In 2010, he was elected as a Distinguished Member of ASCE, the first Australian Civil Engineer to be so recognised.


Prof. Dr. Roger Frank

Ecole nationale des ponts et chaussées’ (ENPC), France
President of ISSMGE (2013-2017)

Roger Frank was born in 1949 at Roslyn, New York (USA). He was then raised in the UK, in Switzerland and in France. He received his Diploma of Engineering from ‘Ecole nationale des ponts et chaussées’ (ENPC, National School of Bridges and Highways of France) in 1972. Both his Doctor of Engineering degree (1974) and his Doctor of Science degree (1984) are from Pierre and Marie Curie University of Paris. Roger Frank has devoted his entire professional career to the 'Ponts et Chaussées' (the French Highway Administration). He was first employed by ‘Laboratoire central des ponts et chaussées’ (LCPC), where he became Head of the Foundations Section in 1983, and Head of the Soil Mechanics and Foundations Division in 1990. From 1992 to 2003, he was the Director of CERMES (ENPC-LCPC), a teaching and research centre in soil mechanics. In 1997, Roger Frank was promoted to the rank of Professor in geotechnical engineering at ENPC.
The main field of expertise of Roger Frank is in situ testing and foundation engineering. He carries out theoretical and experimental research, as well as consulting work for civil engineering projects. He has authored or co-authored 220 papers in journals and conference proceedings, and he has delivered numerous invited lectures in many countries. As a specialist in pile foundation design, Professor Frank has participated in the design of the foundations of several major bridges in the world. Starting in 1989, Roger Frank has been involved in many standardisation committees in France and in Europe, particularly those linked to soil-structure interaction. From 1998 to 2004, he was the Chairman of the European committee in charge of Eurocode 7 on ‘Geotechnical design’.
He was the Vice President for Europe of the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE) for the period 2005 to 2009 and an appointed member on the Board of ISSMGE for the period 2009 to 2013. He was the Chairman of the Strategic Advisory Committee for the 18th ICSMGE held in Paris, 2-6 September 2013.

Some aspects of research and practice for pile design in France

This presentation will summarize the main features of the methods and rules used for designing pile foundations under axial and and transverse loadings. These methods are established mostly with the use of the results of Ménard pressuremeter tests (MPT) and focus on the prediction of axial and transverse displacements. After giving the general context of foundation design in France and describing the original experimental research programmes, the theoretical background for these rules is also explained. They are now included in the French standard for pile design (AFNOR, 2012), fully compatible with Eurocode 7 on ‘Geotechnical design’.