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Geotechnical Conference

Below is the final conference schedule with confirmed speakers, talk titles and session titles.
To view the Powerpoint presentations from the Geotechnical Conference at Geotechnica ME 2013, click here.



Wednesday 4th December


Opening Times: 09:00 to 16:00


09:30 - 10:00: Welcome & Keynote Address


Improving standards and quality in the supply chain

Eng. Osman El Hussein Mohammed

Quality Researcher of the Department of Quality, Safety and Environment, Asghal


Session 1 - Infrastructure construction and managing risk in an arid environment


With an ambitious regional program of construction, managing the geotechnical and construction risks are paramount to successful and sustainable projects. Learn about how these challenges can be met technically and how initiatives such as collaboration can reduce your exposure.

10:00 - 10:30: Infrastructure project risk management and mitigation: Role of the ground engineering professional

Asim Gaba

Director, Arup


10:30 - 11:00: Foundations for infrastructure projects in MENA: an approach to reduce risk and construction costs

Benoît Latapie

Senior Geotechnical Engineer, Atkins Middle East


11:00 - 11:30: Coffee Break

11:30 - 12:00: Recent experiences of real-time monitoring on tunnelling projects in London

Dr Andrew Ridley

Managing Director, Geotechnical Observations Limited


12:00 - 12:30: Sustainable building construction in Qatar

Eng. Ahmad Jassim Al-Jolo

Chairman, Qatar Society of Engineers


12:30 - 14:15: Lunch Break

Session 2 - Geotechnical solutions to tunnelling and deep excavations in potentially voided or saturated ground


As the region's major cities continue to grow and the availability of un-developed land in the urban environment diminishes, the requirement for tunnelling and deep basements will increase. Listen to experts involved in major developments, metro, water and sewerage projects in the region.

14:45 - 15:15: Groundwater control for major infrastructure projects in the Middle East

Paul Turner

Director, WJ Groundwater


15:15 - 15:45: Coffee Break

15:45 - 16:15: Some geotechnical observations for deep foundations

Peter Sharp

Regional Director, Mott Macdonald


16:15 - 16:45: Application of computational limit analysis & design in the Middle East

Professor Matthew Gilbert

University of Sheffield & LimitState Ltd


Discussion, Summary and Close

Thursday 5th December


Opening Times: 09:00 to 16:00


09:30 - 10:00: Welcome & Keynote Address


A collaborative approach to managing risk

Professor Barry Clarke

Professor of Geotechnical Engineering, University of Leeds; Former President of ICE


Session 3 - Dealing with the risk posed by dissolution features and cavities in a karstic environment


Dissolution and karstic features are often an unavoidable risk due to the unique geology of the region. However, the difficulties with identifying these at planning and even construction phase means quantifying that risk is challenging. Recent advances in investigation techniques and innovative engineering solutions will be discussed which can be adopted to better define the risk.

10:00 - 10:30: Testing karst hazard Prediction in Qatar

James Duggan

GIS Consultant, Exxon Mobil


10:30 - 11:00: - Logging of the Rus Formation Qatar – one year later

Sallie Vest

Lead Engineering Geologist, CH2M


11:00 - 11:30: Seismic imaging of karst in Qatar: Work in progress

Dr Rod Eddies

Global Lead on Surface Geophysics, Fugro


11:30 - 12:00: Coffee Break

Session 4 - Water Engineering to deliver sustainable growth


Water supply and management is essential to enable sustainable growth and in an arid environment, this presents its own unique challenges. This session will help you understand the regional problems and how they may be overcome.

12:00 - 12:30: Geotechnical risk management for water engineering projects

Simon Atkinson

Senior Engineering Geologist, Byrne Looby Partners


12:30 - 13:00: Water sustainability for the future

Dr Parneet Paul

Director of Water Sustainability Research Centre, Brunel University


13:00 - 14:30: Lunch Break

Session 5 - Wireline or Geophysics


For most situations wireline coring provides the best chance of obtaining high quality samples, however it is expensive compared to other methods. With our computing power increasing can geophysics replace the need to get any core? This session debates the advantages of these techniques.

14:30 - 14:50: Wireline logging methods – a powerful tool for site investigation in traffic infrastructure projects

Wolfram Felfer

Managing Director, Fugro Austria


14:50 - 15:05: Diagraphy drilling and geophysical logging – a complementary study to rotary coring

Horatiu Corbeanu

Geotechnical Engineer, CH2M


15:30 - 16:30: Interactive Panel Discussion: Can Geotechnical Risk be Easily Identified and Managed?


Construction projects are many and varied and understanding the risk both below and above ground allows the key stakeholder to have confidence in obtaining a successful technical and financial outcome. Often the most significant unknowns are ground conditions and this open session will discuss the significance of quality, completeness and cost to obtain the data required to assess and manage the risk.

Peter Reading

Professor David Norbury

Dr John Powell

Dr Parneet Paul


Discussion, Summary and Close