The best in geotechnical engineering

Posted on Wednesday 11th July 2012

Since 1956 the University of Birmingham has provided postgraduate Geotechnical Engineering studies and the programme boasts over 1000 MSc graduates to date. The high quality of the teaching and research which students experience is reflected in the industry awards won by Birmingham MSc graduates. The following is a handful of the most recent winners:

Ground Engineering - Young Geotechnical Engineer: 2011 winner Benoit Latapie

He graduated with MSc in Geotechnical Engineering from the University of Birmingham in 2007.

Subsequently he joined Atkins and worked on a range of projects.

Peter Gilbert (Chief Engineer, Atkins)

“He is enthusiastic, dynamic, efficient and awesomely clever. He is one of the best young geotechnical engineers that I have worked with.”


The Glossop Award and Medal winner Ms Sophie Gibb

Sophie undertook her studies on part-time basis whilst working for Key GeoSolutions Ltd and graduated with MSc in Geotechnical Engineering in 2011.

She was awarded the prize for her work on ‘Application of presplit blasting to final faces in hard rock quarries.’  She undertook this work for her MSc, dissertation.

MSc project supervisor’s comments:

Sophie has undertaken significant piece of work and produced a very high quality report.  She has demonstrated high level of enthusiasm supported by robust academic ability.” (Dr Gurmel S Ghataora)


British Geotechnical Association - 2011 MSc Dissertation Prize winner Thomas Clifford

Thomas undertook his studies on part-time basis whist working for Aggregate Industries and graduated with MSc in Geotechnical Engineering from the University of Birmingham in 2011. 

Prize was awarded to for his work entitled ‘Designing for Rockfall in Quarries’.

MSc project supervisor’s comments:

“Tom has produced a comprehensive research report that makes a significant contribution to the quarrying industry.” “Study represents more than six months rather than three months of work required for the MSc.  Project.” (Dr Gurmel S Ghataora)


Each masters level student has to produce a dissertation on their major project and a number are of particularly high quality.  Many of the major projects are run in collaboration with industry.  The University much values its links with industry as both academic knowledge and industry know-how help our students to develop better understanding of the subject.