Congratulations are due to International Geosynthetics Society Past President Jorge Zornberg! Dr. Zornberg, P.E., F.ASCE,  is one of the most influential and active practitioners in geosynthetics. A new lecture series, the Zornberg Lecture, has been established.

In an announcement on its website, the IGS notes that the lecture has been created in recognition of “Dr. Jorge Zornberg’s major contributions to the geosynthetics discipline, of his leadership in conceiving and organizing the first IGS GeoAmericas conference, and of his continued fostering of the IGS presence across the Americas.”

Jorge Zornberg Lecture, IGS
Dr. Zornberg, from a 2016 TxDOT video series that profiled geosynthetic-reinforced unbound base courses and pavement design on expansive clay soils.

RELATED: TxDOT Videos Highlight Zornberg’s Geosynthetics Research


During his tenure as IGS President (2010 – 2014), Jorge Zornberg oversaw an extremely active period of growth. He was a vocal proponent of broadening the IGS’s reach through new national and regional chapters; regional event growth; and corporate member growth. He wanted geotechnical engineering professionals working with geosynthetics to see themselves as part of a global community, however local they worked.

(NOTE: Minerva, publisher of Geosynthetica, has a division that manages the International Geosynthetics Society. Dr. Zornberg always kept the office quite busy!)

The IGS reports that its Pan-American Activities Committee (PAAC) worked to establish the Zornberg Lecture. Plans were finalized during a PAAC meeting in Seoul, South Korea at the 11th International Conference on Geosynthetics. The IGS Council accepted and endorsed the proposal.

The Zornberg Lecture will be delivered at IGS Pan-American Conferences on Geosynthetics, beginning with GeoAmericas 2020 ONLINE.


A Selection Task Force has been appointed to solicit and vet nominations for the 2020 Zornberg Lecturer.

“The Zornberg Lecture will recognize an individual whose work resulted in significant advances in concepts or technologies that had a significant impact on the practice of geosynthetics engineering in the Americas,” writes the IGS.
Criteria include:

  • Having a demonstrated pursuit of excellence
  • Having contributed to the development of the geosynthetics discipline at large
  • Having advanced, either directly or indirectly, to the appropriate use of geosynthetics in the Americas

Dr. Zornberg is Professor and W.J. Murray Fellow in the Geotechnical Engineering program at the University of Texas at Austin. He has 30 years’ experience both in research and practice in geotechnical, geosynthetics, and geoenvironmental engineering. He earned his B.S. (Hons.) from the National University of Cordoba (Argentina), his M.S. from PUC-Rio (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), and his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley.

His many contributions have garnered many honors, including the Collingwood Prize from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE, 2000), the CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation (NSF, 2001), the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE, 2002), an IGS Award (2004), the J. James R. Croes Medal from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE, 2012), and the Mercer Lecture award (ISSMGE and IGS, 2015).

Geosynthetica congratulates its good friend, Dr. Jorge Zornberg! We look forward to the first Zornberg Lecture at GeoAmericas 2020 ONLINE.