Lifetime Achievement Medal

Lifetime Achievement Medal


The Lifetime Achievement Award was created by the current president of the ISSMGE, Dr Marc Ballouz, in 2022.   

The Lifetime achievement medal is awarded to a person who, by his/her knowledge, involvement, character and achievements, have made considerable and significant contributions to the geotechnical engineers and the geotechnical practice in his country, region or at international level. The award considers contributions over a whole of a career, and for the manner in which their work has touched and shaped the lives and views of many geotechnical engineers.

Up to two medals are offered yearly, respecting geographic diversity.

The ISSMGE President or its regional representative will present the medal to the nominee in person, in his/hers place during a ceremony organized by the national member society.

Nomination of candidates

The candidates should be nominated by the national member societies via the regional ISSMGE Vice-presidents.

The call for candidates will be launched once per year and 2 medals will be awarded every year.

View 2024 Call for Nominations Announcement

Nominations must reach the Secretary General by the announced date on the ISSMGE Website.

Regional ISSMGE Vice-Presidents will pre-evaluate the candidates and communicate the result to AWAC.

AWAC chooses 1 3 candidates from different regions and submit the proposals to ISSMGE board.

ISSMGE board will decide the recipients of the medal.

The application of the national member society should include:

  • A general presentation of the candidate and his/her lifetime activity and achievements with emphasize on the impact of his/her activity on the geotechnical engineers 
  • Argumentation of the national society for this nomination (1 2 pages) based on the criteria here below


Eligibility and basic requirements for the award are:

  • The proposed candidate should be a known and recognized member of the ISSMGE community in the country or region or at international level, with a lifetime experience and practice and a major influence on the geotechnical engineers
  • The candidate should have played a significant role in and made substantial contribution to the geotechnical engineering industry in their country. Examples of contributions include, but not limited to:
    • dedicated industry leadership,
    • contribution to innovative industry practice,
    • mentorship of young geotechnical engineers,
    • long term contribution to administration, organization and leadership of geotechnical firms.
    • Long term contribution to local geotechnical societies;
  • The candidate should be alive at the time of the nomination. Particular attention should be given to those who are not able to travel and/or attend international conferences in the field, therefore cannot still present their achievements.
  • Limit of 1 nominee per year per member society. If the nominee is not awarded, the national society can nominate her / him to another call in the next year(s).


Results of the call for nominees for the ISSMGE Lifetime Achievement Medal 2023

After the publication of the call for nominees for the ISSMGE Lifetime Achievement Medal 2023, were received 16 files.

After the analysis of the regional vice-presidents and of the members of AWAC, the ISSMGE board decided the 2 awardees of 2023:

Prof. Michele Jamiolkowski (Italy)

Prof. Harry Poulos (Australia)

The nominees that were not awarded this year can be nominated again in the next calls.