Prof. Dr. J. P. Giroud

A Global Geo-Legend

Global Geo-Legend!

Member of the US National Academy of Engineering

Dr. Giroud, Chevalier in the Order of the Légion d’Honneur and a former professor of geotechnical engineering, is a consulting engineer, member of the US National Academy of Engineering, Doctor Honoris Causa of the Technical University of Bucharest, Past President of the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS), Chairman Emeritus and founder of Geosyntec Consultants, and Chairman of the Editorial Board of Geosynthetics International. Dr. Giroud has authored over 400 publications. He coined the terms “geotextile” and “geomembrane” in 1977. He has developed many of the design methods used in geosynthetics engineering and has originated a number of geosynthetics applications. In 1994, the IGS named its highest award “The Giroud Lecture”, “in recognition of the invaluable contributions of Dr. J.P. Giroud to the technical advancement of the geosynthetics discipline”; a Giroud Lecture is presented at the opening of each International Conference on Geosynthetics. In 2002, Dr. Giroud became Honorary Member of the IGS with the citation “Dr. Giroud is truly the father of the International Geosynthetics Society and the geosynthetics discipline”. In 2005, Dr. Giroud has been awarded the status of “hero” of the Geo-Institute of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and has delivered the prestigious Vienna Terzaghi Lecture. In 2005-2006 he presented the Mercer Lectures, a prestigious lecture series endorsed jointly by the IGS and the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE). In 2008, J.P. Giroud delivered the prestigious Terzaghi Lecture of the ASCE. In 2016, Dr. Giroud delivered the prestigious Victor de Mello Lecture of the ISSMGE and, in 2017, the prestigious Széchy Lecture, in Budapest. Dr. Giroud has 56 years of experience in geotechnical engineering, including 48 years on geosynthetics.

Dr. Giroud is an independent consultant operating under “JP GIROUD, INC.” since January 2001.

Civil engineer (Ecole Centrale Paris), Ph.D. in geotechnical engineering (University of Grenoble).

Former professor of geotechnical engineering (Universities of Grenoble and Paris, French National School for Civil Servants in Civil Engineering) (1963-1978).

Director of the Geotextiles and Geomembranes Group of Woodward Consultants (1978-1983).

Co-founder, former Chairman of the Board, and Chairman Emeritus of GeoSyntec Consultants, a consulting engineering firm that grew in seventeen years (1983-2001) from two to more than three hundred employees, including more than 30 PhDs.

Author of over 430 publications.

Past President of the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS).

Past Chairman (two terms) of the Technical Committee on Geosynthetics of the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE).

Co-founder and Chairman of the Editorial Board of the two main technical journals in the field of geosynthetics engineering, Geotextiles and Geomembranes (1984-1994) and Geosynthetics International (1994-present).

More than 47 years of experience on geosynthetics. Developed many methods for the design of applications of geosynthetics (leakage evaluation, filter criteria, liner system design, slope stability, unpaved roads, etc.). Originated a number of geosynthetics applications: first nonwoven geotextile filter (1970), first geotextile in a dam (1970), first use of nonwoven geotextile as cushion for geomembrane (1971), first double liner with two geomembranes (1974), first entirely geosynthetic double liner system with two geomembranes and a geonet leakage detection system (1981). Involved in the design or performance analysis of hundreds of structures incorporating geosynthetics.

Keynote lecturer at the opening session of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 8th International Conferences on Geosynthetics (1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, and 2006).

I977: coined the terms “geotextile” and “geomembrane”, which led to the geo-terminology used in the geosynthetics discipline.

1982: chairman of the second International Conference on Geotextiles.

1984: chairman of the International Conference on Geomembranes.

1994: The highest level of recognition in the field of geosynthetics engineering was bestowed upon Dr. Giroud when the Council of the IGS decided that the opening lecture of each International Conferences on Geosynthetics will be called The Giroud Lecture.

1994: IGS Award, 1994, for work on liner leakage.

2002: Honorary Member of the IGS with the citation “Dr. Giroud is truly the father of the IGS and the geosynthetics discipline”.

2004: IGS Award, 2004, for work on filters.

2005: delivered the Vienna Terzaghi Lecture.

2005: status of “hero” of the Geo-Institute of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).

2005-2006: delivered the Mercer Lectures, a lecture series endorsed jointly by the IGS and the ISSMGE.

2007: Doctor Honoris Causa of the Technical University of Bucharest (Romania).

2008: delivered the ASCE Terzaghi Lecture.

2009: elected to the US National Academy of Engineering.

2010: appointed Chevalier in the Order of the Légion d’Honneur.

2013 : Felix Centraliens award, Paris, France.

2014: IGS Service Award for the founding of the two official journals of the IGS.

2016: delivered the Victor de Mello lecture of the ISSMGE.



Prof. Dr. Eng. Mario Manassero
Vice-President for Europe of ISSMGE (2017-2021)


Mario Manassero obtained his Civil Engineering degree in 1980 at Politecnico di Torino and received his Ph.D. at the same university in 1987. He has been visiting professor at University of Ancona (Italy) from 1988 to 1993, Ghent University (Belgium) in 1996 and at Colorado State University (USA) in 1995. Since 1998, he has been professor of Geotechnical Engineering at Politecnico di Torino.

He has been chairman of Technical Committee (TC) no. 215 "Environmental Geotechnics" of the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE) for the period 2001 to 2014 and a member of the expert consulting board of the Italian Ministry of the Environment for the Environmental Impact Assessment of major national projects from 2008 to 2012.

His main research activities are devoted to the characterization of soil deposits by in-situ tests, soil improvement and reinforcement methods, containment systems for landfills and polluted subsoils, vacuum extraction of subsoil pollutants and the mechanical behavior of municipal and industrial solid wastes. He has also addressed more fundamental topics like the chemo-physical interaction between pore fluids and the solid skeleton of active clays, the multiphase coupled flows and the associated subsoil pollutant transport phenomena.

He has been invited lecturer in a number of international conferences and academic celebrations. Among them it is worth to mention the State of the Art Lecture on Environmental Geotechnics, at the Millennium Conference “GEOENG2000” jointly  organized  by ISSMGE, ISRM e IAGEA, Melbourne, Australia (November, 2000).

He has been appointed as the second R. Kerry Rowe Lecturer by ISSMGE TC 215 and the Lecture was delivered at the 19th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ICSMGE), Seoul (Corea), 2017.

He was involved un many committees for the preparation of guidelines and regulations, at national and international level, concerning civil engineering and environmental aspects and he was member of the Italian Geotechnical Society Committee, AGI-UNI-SC7, for the National Application Norm of the Eurocode n. 7 “Geotechnical Design” (CEN).

As far as his professional activity is concerned Mario Manassero was involved in many landmark engineering projects such as the protection of the Venice lagoon, the reclamation and rehabilitation of the Rome International Airport area, the stability assessment of the red mud tailing basin at Portoscuso (Italy), the pollutant containment diaphragm wall at Cengio (Italy) and the design of the Messina Strait bridge foundations and anchor blocs. He has also been geotechnical consultant of the Victoria State Environmental Protection Agency (Australia), contributing to the environmental planning for landfill locations as well as to the landfill design guidelines.

He has authored, co-authored and/or edited five books and more than 150 technical and scientific papers in journals and conference proceedings.

Lecture Title: From the Design of Bottom Landfill Liner Systems to the Impact Assessment of Contaminants on Underlying Aquifers

A long lasting research activity has been developed at the Politecnico di Torino since the 90’s in order to set up an advanced and comprehensive design approach for the definition and optimization of the bottom lining system profiles for solid waste landfills, with particular reference to the mineral barriers. Recently, particular attention has been devoted to the characterization of the Geosynthetic Clay Liners (GCLs) in terms of their hydraulic, diffusive and osmotic properties versus the containment and self-healing performances assessed through the coupled flows theory (Mitchell, 1990). In the first part of the paper a recently proposed theoretical approach (Manassero and Dominijanni, 1993; Dominijanni and Manassero, 2006 and Manassero, 2019), which is able to model the GCL bentonite hydro-chemo-mechanical behaviour versus the intrinsic, state and fabric parameters through the fabric boundary surface (FBS), is illustrated. Thereafter, a critical overview of the laboratory tests and procedures for the assessment of the input parameters of the model is presented. In the second part of the paper a simple but comprehensive closed form solution analytical model is defined in order to develop a consistent risk analyses and impact assessment of the potentially released pollutants on the groundwater quality in the underlying aquifer. The main advantages of the proposed method are its simplicity and easy use that allow, as a consequence, to exploit the probabilistic methods, such as the Montecarlo one, without excessive computational complexities and time consuming.