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Fellows Directory

Kerry Rowe

Kerry Rowe

Professor Kerry Rowe FREng FRS


Elected: 2013


R. Kerry Rowe is a civil engineer noted as one of the pioneers of geosynthetics. A particular line of his research is assessing the effectiveness of plastic (geomembrane) liners and geosynthetic clay liners (a composite material incorporating clay) that limit contamination from mining operations and waste disposal facilities.

Kerry’s research has also included tunnelling in soft ground, and reinforcement of embankments and retaining walls. He has developed new computational modelling and experimental techniques. His experimental work ranges from small-scale laboratory tests on system components to mesocosms where a full-scale system is examined under controlled conditions — in some cases for more than a decade — and full-scale field monitoring from the Arctic to the Antarctic.

Kerry is a co-author of the leading book in the field, Barrier Systems for Waste Disposal Facilities. His numerous awards include the 2005 Rankine Lecture, the 2012 Sir John Kennedy Medal (PDF) of the Engineering Institute of Canada and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal of Canada. He is past President of the International Geosynthetics Society and the Canadian Geotechnical Society.

Professional positions

Canada Research Chair, Department of Civil Engineering, Queen's University (Canada)

Interest and expertise

Subject groups

  • Engineering
    • Engineering, civil, Engineering, environmental


Geotechnical engineering, Solid waste management, Hazardous wastes, Nuclear waste, Geoenvironmental Engineering, Soft ground tunnelling, Geosynthetics

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