DFI Announces Winners of 2017 Young Professor Paper Competition 

November 1, 2017, Hawthorne N.J.:

The DFI and DFI Educational Trust 2017 Young Professor Paper Competition winner is Arash Khosravifar, Ph.D., P.E., from the geotechnical engineering group in civil and environmental engineering department at Portland State University (PSU). In the winning paper, “Development of a Design Guideline for Bridge Pile Foundations subjected to Liquefaction-induced Lateral Spreading”, Dr. Khosravifar, along with his co-author Jonathan Nasr, graduate student researcher at PSU, describe the development of new equivalent static analysis (ESA) methods that combine inertial and lateral spreading loads for estimating elastic and inelastic pile demands. 

Effective-stress nonlinear dynamic analyses (NDA) were performed for piles in liquefiable sloped ground to assess inertia and liquefaction-induced lateral spreading in long-duration vs. short-duration seismic excitation. The authors performed a parametric study using a wide range of input motions and motion durations from subduction and crustal earthquakes. The NDA results indicated that the pile demands increased due to liquefaction-induced lateral spreading compared to nonliquefied conditions. In addition, the results of the NDA were used to evaluate the accuracy of the ESA methods recommended by Caltrans and Oregon DOT for estimating pile demands. 

The first runner-up of the Young Professor Paper Competition is Hoyoung Seo, Ph.D., P.E., from Texas Tech University. Dr. Seo, along with co-author Mintae Kim, of Texas Tech University, wrote a paper titled “Soil Plug Behavior of Open-Ended Pipe Piles during Installation.” 

The awards were presented at the DFI 42nd Annual Conference on Deep Foundations in October 2017 in New Orleans, where Khosravifar presented the winning paper to conference attendees. Each of the winners and runners-up will have their papers published in a future issue of the DFI Journal. They also received a library of up to 20 DFI publications along with a gratis two-year DFI Individual Membership.

Contact: Emilio S. Fandino, Trust Administrator, 973-423-4030,

About DFI Educational Trust: The Deep Foundations Institute Educational Trust ( is an independent, 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization established in 2006 by the Deep Foundations Institute (DFI) as its charitable arm. The mission of the Trust is to support and encourage individuals in the fields of study related to the deep foundation industry by providing scholarships and opportunities to meet and work with deep foundation industry leaders.

About Deep Foundations Institute (DFI)
DFI ( is an international association of contractors, engineers, manufacturers, suppliers, academics and owners in the deep foundations industry. Our multidisciplinary membership creates a consensus voice and a common vision for continual improvement in the planning, design and construction of deep foundations and excavations. We bring together members for networking, education, communication and collaboration. With our members, we promote the advancement of the deep foundations industry through technical committees, educational programs and conferences, publications, research, government relations and outreach. DFI has more than 4,000 members worldwide.

Arash Khosravifar, Ph.D., P.E., Portland State University, winner of the 2017 DFI Young Professor Paper Competition

Jonathan Nasr, Portland State University, winner of the 2017 DFI Young Professor Paper Competition

Hoyoung Seo, Ph.D., P.E., Texas Tech University, runner-up of the 2017 DFI Young Professor Paper Competition