Andrew J. Whittle, Sc.D., P.E., P.Eng, NAE, FICE, F.ASCE, the Edmund K. Turner Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at MIT, has been named a fellow by the ASCE Board of Direction.
Whittle joined the MIT faculty in 1988 and served as head of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering from 2009 to 2013. He is an expert in geotechnical engineering whose research deals principally with formulation of constitutive models for representing the complex mechanical properties of soils and their application in predicting the performance of foundations and underground construction projects.
His research has been widely used in the design of foundation systems for deepwater oil production facilities and in major urban excavation and tunneling projects, including the Central Artery–Third Harbor Tunnel (“Big Dig”) in Boston, and Tren Urbano in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Whittle has conducted research on a variety of environmental sensing projects through the SMART-CENSAM, and served as chief scientific advisor for an associated spin-off company, Visenti Pte. Ltd., that provides smart water analytics services (acquired by Xylem Inc. in 2016).
Whittle is a co-editor of the International Journal of Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics (since 1999) and previously served on the editorial boards for ASCE’s Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering (1993-2010) and the Canadian Geotechnical Journal (2004-2010). He has published more than 260 papers in refereed journals and conferences.
He is an active consultant who has worked on more than 30 major onshore and offshore construction projects and was an expert involved in the investigations into the collapse of the Nicoll Highway in Singapore (2004-06). He has also served on a series of major review panels: for the National Research Council (NRC/NAE) investigating the performance of hurricane protection systems in New Orleans; for the Governor of Massachusetts on a “stem-to-stern” safety review of the Big Dig tunnels in Boston; for the Chief Executive of Hong Kong investigating the delay in the works of the Hong Kong section of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen–Hong Kong Express rail link (XRL); and as a member of the Board of Directors for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (2009-2015).
He has received several awards from ASCE, including the Casagrande Award (1994), the Croes Medal (1994), Middlebrooks Prize (1997, 2002, and 2005) and Huber Research Award (1998). He was the 2007 CGS Cross-Canada Lecturer and the 2018 ASCE GI Cross USA Lecturer. He has held visiting professorships at the University of Western Australia, Polytechnic University of Catalunya, Cambridge University, Hong Kong University, and Kumamoto University, as well as having been an honorary professor at Tsinghua University (2019). In 2010 he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering.
Whittle earned his BSc. in civil engineering from Imperial College in 1981 and completed graduate studies in geotechnical engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1987). He is a licensed professional engineer in New York State and Alberta, Canada.