Binod Tiwari, Ph.D., P.E., F.ASCE, the associate vice president for research and sponsored projects and a professor of civil and environmental engineering at California State University, Fullerton, has been named a Fellow by the ASCE Board of Direction.
Tiwari has made several significant contributions to engineering, educational, editorial, research and engineering society activities. He has taught 19 different freshman to graduate-level courses developing thorough, practical and easy-to-follow course materials. These materials have become invaluable resources and are frequently used postgraduation.
As a sought-after researcher, he is best known for his contributions to the residual and fully softened shear strength of soils, stability of slopes, and static and dynamic laboratory testing to understand the behavior of soils and natural disaster mitigation. Through his efforts, there has been a better understanding of soil behavior, and Tiwari was able to provide practical recommendations toward using appropriate shear strength parameters for different loading situations. These recommendations have provided geotechnical engineering practice with the necessary theory and tools to design better, safer and more economical infrastructure impacting the quality of life of hundreds of thousands of people worldwide.
Major research contributions to the geotechnical engineering profession include an understanding of the residual and fully softened shear strength of soils and the development of correlations that allow the estimation of these properties in practice; analyzing the control of different parameters on the triggering of coseismic slope failures, allowing communities to be better prepared for earthquake events; characterizing new materials such as lightweight cellular concrete and shredded rubber tires for geotechnical applications to ensure their safe and proper use; modeling of rainfall and earthquake-induced slope failures for a better understanding of the role of rainfall infiltration and seismic motions in destabilizing slopes; characterization of the reduction in undrained shear strength of fine-grained soils as a result of cyclic loading; and examining ground modification techniques to reduce the impacts of ground shaking and to improve soil properties.
Tiwari has been PI or co-PI in nearly $2.4 million of funded research grants from various agencies, including the National Science Foundation & U.S. National Institutes of Health. He has supervised over 200 students in undergraduate and graduate research projects, his research efforts have resulted over 250 publications, and his inspirational teaching and attentive mentorship have been impactful and transformative.
In addition to the above activities, he has also been significantly involved in several professional organizations. He has contributed at all levels – from being an active member to holding leadership positions at the local, regional, national and international levels. He has served as the chair of ASCE’s Geo-Institute Los Angeles Chapter, and currently serves as vice president of the International Consortium on Landslides and chair of the engineering division of the Council for Undergraduate Research. Tiwari has also led or participated in several Geotechnical Extreme Event Reconnaissance teams, such as 2015 Gorkha/Earthquake and the ASCE team for the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake, helping document lessons learned.