Bright Spark Lecture Award


To promote young members of ISSMGE to play a major role in various international and regional conferences, the Bright Spark Lecture award was introduced by past president, Professor Charles W.W. Ng. The award was created for promising young Geotechnical Engineers in both industy and  academia to have a chance to deliver keynote and invited lectures at these conferences.

Selection and Approval Procedure

  1. Local conference organising committee call for conference abstracts and identified Bright Spark Lecture nominees

  2. Local conference organising committee reviews nominee applications for the award (with relevant Technical Committee if required)

  3. Local conference organising committee select recipient(s) of the award

  4. Local conference organising committee passes recipient(s) information, completed application forms, and attachments through to ISSMGE President (copying YMPG on email)

  5. Nominees submitted are reviewed by ISSMGE President in collaboration with YMPG (a maxiumum of four recipients should be selected for any single conference)

  6. Recipient(s) approved for award by ISSMGE President

  7. Certificates are passed to local conference organisers

  8. Certificate presented to recipient(s) at conference

  9. Recipient(s) information added to ISSMGE website

Each recepient will be invited to give a 20-30 minute presentation at the conference and write a plenary paper. An “ISSMGE BRIGHT SPARK LECTURE” certificate will be given either by the President or their designate.


  • Outstanding and promising young members
  • 36 or under at the last day of a conference
  • Nominated by Member Societies and the YMPG
  • Limite of 3 nominees per member society
  • At least one letter of support from applicants member society explaining excellence of candidate and their work


Click here for the application form


List of Bright Spark Lecturers

Click on Bright Spark Lecturers colored in red to read their biography. 

Conference Date Name of winner Affiliation
7th Technical Conference in Eastern Asia on Geo-Natural Disasters
(ATC3) held in Chengdu, China
May 2018 Dr Lin Dong Lanzhou Institute of Sesimology, China Earthquake Administration
7th International Conference on Unsaturated Soils (TC106), Hong Kong August 2018
  1. Dr Amin Askarinejad
  2. Dr. Annan Zhou
  3. Dr. Majid Ghayoomi
  4. Dr. Chao Zhou
  1. Delft University of Technology
  2. Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology
  3. University of Hampshire
  4. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
8th International Congress on Environmental Geotechnics (TC215) in Hangzhou, China October 2018
  1. Dr. Xunchang Fei
  2. Dr. Junjun Ni
  3. Dr. Marta Di Sante
  4. Dr. Wenjie Xu
  1. Nanyang Technological University
  2. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
  3. Università Politecnica delle Marche
  4. Zhejiang University
GeoMEast 2018 November 2018
  1. Dr. Yuijie Qi
  2. Muhammad Zayed
  3. Dr. Surya Congress
  1. University of Wollongong
  2. University of California, San Diego
  3. Texas A&M University

17th European Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering in Reykjavik, Iceland

September 2019
  1. Dr Federico Pisano
  2. Dr Mateo Ciantia
  1. Delft University of Technology
  2. University of Dundee
17th African Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering in Cape Town, South Africa October 2019
  1. Dr Charles John MacRobert
  1. University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
16th Asian Regional Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, Taipei October 2019
  1. Dr. Anthony Leung
  2. Dr. Ching Hung
  1. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
  2. National Cheng Kung University
16th Pan-American Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, Cancun, Mexico November 2019
  1. Marlisio Oliveira Cecilio Junior
  2. Carlos Omar Vargas Moreno
  3. Tugce Baser
  1. University of Wollongong, Australia
  2. National Autonomous University of Mexico
  3. University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

9th Asian Young Geotechnical Engineers  Conference(9AYGEC) AND 15th International Conference on Geotechnical Engineering (15ICGE)

Lahore 2019
December 2019
  1. Dr. Jahanzaib Israr
  1. University of Engineering and Technology Lahore
7th International Symposium on Geotechnical Safety And Risk December 2019
  1. Bryant Robbins
  2. Zi-Jun Cao
  3. Takayuki Shuku
  1. US Army Engineering Research and Development Center
  2. Wuhan University, China
  3. Okayama University, Japan
3rd International Symposium on Machine Learning and Big Data in Geoscience and TC304 Workshop on Risk Assessment in Geoengineering, Wrocaw, Poland August 2021
  1. Dongming Zhang
  1. Professor, Tongji University, China
International Young Professionals Workshop on Road-Rail Infrastructure 2021 November 2021
  1. Dr. Thanh Nguyen
  2. Dr. Fernanda Ferreira
  3. Dr. Manuel Neves
  1. Australian Research Council (ARC) Research Fellow, University of Technology Sydney, Australia
  2. Post-doctoral Research Fellow, University of Porto, Portugal
  3. Geotechnical Engineer, Golder Associates, Sydney, Australia
20th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering May 2022
  1. Brendon Bradley
  2. Ashani Ranathunga


  1. Professor of Earthquake Engineering, University of Canterbury, New Zealand
  2. Lecturer, University of Leeds, UK
10th International Conference on Physical Modelling in Geotechnics in Daejeon, Korea June 2022
  1. Kil-Wan Ko
  2. Orestis Adamidis
  1. Postdoctoral Researcher/Visiting Scholar, University of California, Berkeley, USA.
  2. Associate Professor and Tutoring Fellow in Engineering, University of Oxford, UK.
National Workshop on Transportation Geomechanics and Ground Improvement in Sydney, Australia November 2022
  1. Rakesh Malisetty
  2. Liuxin Chen
  1. Research Fellow, Transportation Research Centre, University of Technology Sydney (UTS), Australia.
  2. PhD Student, Monash University, Australia.
26th National Conference on Geotechnical Engineering in Jakarta, Indonesia November 2022
  1. Lutfian Rusdi Daryono
  2. Jeremy Sean Kadarman
  3. Anatasya Claresta
  1. Chief Engineer Geotechnics Development Department, Technology Development Headquarters, NITTOC Construction Ltd., Japan.
  2. Geotechnical Engineer at Geomine
  3. Bandung Institute of Technology
16th International Conference on Geotechnical Engineering December 2022
  1. Subhani Medawela
  2. Shay Haq
  1. Research Fellow, Faculty of EIT, University of Technology (UTS), Sydney, Australia.
  2. Ph.D. from University of Technology (UTS), Sydney, Australia.
3rd International Conference in Geotechnical Engineering (ICGEColombo-2020) in Colombo, Sri Lanka December 2022
  1. Chathuri Arachchige
  2. Lilanka Kankanamge
  1. PhD Student, Transport Research Centre, University of Technology Sydney, Australia.
  2. Geotechnical Engineer, National Building Research Organisation, Sri Lanka.

8th International Symposium for Geotechnical Safety & Risk (ISGSR 2022) in Newcastle, Australia

December 2022
  1. Hui (Jack) Wang
  2. Johan Spross
  3. Wenping Gong
  1. Assistant Professor, University of Dayton, Ohio, USA.
  2. Researcher, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden.
  3. Professor, China University of Geosciences (Wuhan), China.
The Hong Kong Institution of Engineers (HKIE) Geotechnical Division 43rd Annual Seminar, 2023 May 2023
  1. Te Xiao
  1. Research Assistant Professor, Geotechnical Engineering, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST)
9th International Congress on Environmental Geotechnics (9iCEG), Chania, Greece June 2023
  1. Kuo Tian
  2. Jie Hu
  3. Nicolò Guarena
  4. Alexandra Clarà Saracho
  1. Assistant Professor, George Mason University, Virginia, USA
  2. Professor, Zhejiang University, China
  3. Research Associate, Polytechnic University of Turin, Italy
  4. Assistant Professor, The University of Texas, Austin, Texas, USA
17th Asian Regional Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering 2023, Astana, Kazakhstan August 2023
  1. J. S. Dhanya
  2. Thao Doan
  3. Zhanbolat Shahmov
  1. Postdoctoral Fellow, L. N. Gumilyov Eurasian National University, Kazakhstan
  2. PhD Candidate, University of Technology Sydney, Australia
  3. Head of Department Design of Buildings and Structures, L. N. Gumilyov Eurasian National University, Kazakhstan
4th International Symposium on Machine Learning & Big Data in Geoscience, Cork, Ireland August 2023
  1. Zili Li
  2. Brian Sheil
  3. Mingliang Zhou
  1. Senior Lecturer, University College Cork, Ireland
  2. Associate Professor, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
  3. Associate Professor, Tongji University
International Symposium on Energy Geotechnics (SEG23), Delft, Netherlands October 2023
  1. Benjamin Cerfontaine
  2. Melis Sutman
  1. Lecturer, University of Southampton, United Kingdom
  2. Assistant Professor, Heriot-Watt University, United Kingdom
2nd International Conference on Construction Resources for Environmentally Sustainable Technologies (CREST2023), Fukuoka, Japan November 2023
  1. Shintaro Miyamoto
  2. Navila Tabassum
  3. Chengjiong Qin
  1. Associate Professor, National Defense Academy of Japan, Japan
  2. Postdoctoral Resesarcher, Yokohama National University, Japan
  3. Ph.D. Student, Kyushu University, Japan
2nd GeoSS MGS Geotechnical Conference 2023, Singapore November 2023
  1. Chia Weng Boon
  2. Lee Long Guang
  1. Geotechnical Design Manager, Gamuda Engineering, Australia
  2. Principal Engineer, One Smart Engineering, Singapore
Indian Geotechnical Conference 2023, Roorkee, India December 2023
  1. Kaustav Chatterjee
  2. Meghna Sharma
  3. Jitesh T. Chavda
  1. Associate Professor, Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, India
  2. Assistant Professor, National Institute of Technology Hamirpur, India
  3. Assistant Professor, Sardar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology Surat, India
11th International Symposium of Geotechnical Aspects of Underground Construction in Soft Ground (IS-Macau 2024), Macau SAR, China June 2024
  1. Zhongkai Huang
  1. Assistant Professor, Tongji University, China
7th International Conference on Geotechnical and Geophysical Site Characterization, Spain June 2024
  1. Alexandre Lopes
  2. Maddy Murali
  3. Zhongkun Frankie Ouyang
  4. Chao Shi
  1. Geotechnical Project Manager, Terrasol (Setec group), France
  2. Geotechnical Engineer, Fugro, The Netherlands
  3. Assistant Professor, Institute for Ocean Engineering at Tsinghua Shenzhen International Graduate School (Tsinghua SIGS) and Ocean Geotechnics Lab (OG Lab), China
  4. Assistant Professor, School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore