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International Audience for Mercer Lectures

The biennial Mercer Lecture series was given this year by Professor JP Giroud, starting at the Sustainable Landfilling Conference in Padua in June and then Landfill 2005 which focused on ‘The Contribution of Geosynthetics to the Geotechnical Aspects of Waste and Liquid Containment’, in South Africa in October. The series is sponsored by Tensar International in memory of Dr Brian Mercer, the firm’s founder and pioneer of the development of geogrids in soil reinforcement and ground stabilisation. Professor Giroud will also be speaking at Kyoto University, Japan early in 2006.

The prestigious Mercer Lecture Series is endorsed by the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, and the International Geosynthetics Society. It aims to help promote co-operation of information exchange between the geotechnical engineering profession and the geosynthetics industry by giving an eminent practitioner the opportunity to undertake a lecture tour on the subject of
geosynthetics in geotechnical engineering.

This year’s speaker Dr JP Giroud, the IGS Past President and Chairman Emeritus of GeoSyntec Consultants in the USA, gave a balanced lecture at Landfill 2005 in South Africa. His lecture, covering the use of geosynthetics in modern waste containment, geotechnical and geoenvironmental engineering, as well as the benefits and drawbacks of their misapplication, was attended by government officials, consultants, contractors, students, landfill operators and owners.

In each series, the Mercer Lecture is given three times, each one in a different continent, usually North America, Europe and the Far East, and past speakers comprise a roll call of leading civil engineers. The lectures were presented in 1992 by Professor Bob Koerner (USA), in 1994 by Professor Jean-Pierre Gourc (France), in 1996 by Professor Fumio Tatsuoka (Japan), by Professor Alan McGown (UK) in 1999/2000, and by Professor Richard J Bathurst (Canada) during 2003/2004 in Winnipeg (Canada), Munich (Germany) and Seoul (S Korea).


Note to editor:
Celebrating 25 years of unrivalled experience in its specialist market, Tensar International is a worldwide leader in the provision and manufacturer of best value solutions for soil reinforcement and ground stabilisation. Tensar products are used to solve civil engineering problems in infrastructure, commercial and industrial development and other construction sectors. The company also offers a comprehensive design service, technical seminars and on-site support, as part of a range of support services. Tensar International, formerly The Netlon Group was founded in Blackburn in 1952.

For press information, please contact: Emma Wilkinson, Senior PR Account Executive, IAS Marketing and Communication plc, Queens Avenue, Macclesfield, Cheshire, SK10 2BN; Tel: 01625 434343; Fax: 01625 434335;

For reader enquiries/ technical information, please contact: Claire Thirtle, Marketing Services Manager at Tensar International, New Wellington Street, Blackburn, Lancs BB2 4PJ. Tel: 01254 266845, Fax: 01254 266869, e-mail: or visit


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