About us

ELGIP, a grouping of research organisations in Europe

Geotechnical engineering in Europe

With a long term commitment major European Research organizations in geo-engineering, each with a strong national position and working both in research, development and innovation, have joined forces since 2002 in ELGIP, the European Large Geotechnical Institutes Platform. Its 15 members employ in total over 2000 professional research staff.

Geotechnical engineering

Geotechnical engineering is the application of the science of soil and rock mechanics, engineering geology and other related disciplines to civil engineering design and construction, and to the preservation and enhancement of the environment. Geotechnical engineering plays a key role in all civil engineering projects, since the built environment is based on or in the ground.

Soil is a natural material which cannot easily be quality controlled. Because of complexities of soil behaviour and natural variations the corresponding uncertainties have restricted the profession traditionally to largely empirical solutions. At present, the state-of-the-art in the geotechnical profession adopts on many occasions a factor of 50% to account for unforeseen circumstances.


The development of world society depends greatly on how humanity deals with the effects of climate change, urbanisation, growing population, mobility, natural hazards and the depletion of natural resources. Our profession, and it’s advancing insight in its field, has great potential and is essential in dealing with these challenges. We already have gained insight in the soil’s complexity, which led to more ‘scientification’ of geo-engineering. The time has arrived to convince society about the added value of our profession.

Objectives of ELGIP

Focus of ELGIP


ELGIP is steered by a Board of Directors, chaired by a president (Iulia Prodan) and supported by a secretariat (Peter van den Berg) and an EC-liaison (Ton Peters).

EU connections

ELGIP is member of the European Council for Construction Research, Development and Innovation (ECCREDI). Furthermore, ELGIPs member are (strongly) involved in:


Climage change mitigation
Geothermal energy

Climate change adaptation
Measures against natural hazards

Transport infrastructure and utilities, waste storage, underground construction, re-use of brownfields.