School of Earth and Environmental Sciences


Dr Gareth Swift

  • Qualifications: BSc (hons) MSc MCSM PhD PgCert HE CEng MIOM3 FHEA
  • Role Title: Course Leader Engineering Geology & Geotechnics
  • Address: Burnaby Building Burnaby Road Portsmouth PO1 3QL
  • Telephone: 023 9284 2280
  • Email:
  • Department: SEES
  • Faculty: Faculty of Science


Through a combination of academic training and professional experience, I consider myself to be a geotechnical engineer. My academic training culminated in postgraduate qualifications in Mining Geology (MSc: University of Exeter - Camborne School of Mines) and Geomechanics (PhD: University of Nottingham). I have acquired professional experience and qualifications during a number of years spent in industry, first with the civil engineering contractor, Taylor Woodrow Construction and later with the geotechnical engineering consultant, Golder Associates (UK) Ltd. However, throughout my academic career I have been actively engaged with consultancy activities, much of which has underpinned my teaching and research interests.

I have strong research interests in all aspects of rock mechanics and soil mechanics, with a smattering of structural mechanics (masonry arches) and environmental engineering (water and wastewater treatment and contaminated land), and at the core of my research are solutions to real-world problems using physical and numerical models, much of which has been stimulated by industry.

If you want to have a chat about ideas you may have for PhD study or if you wish to discuss potential consultancy work, then please contact me.

Teaching Responsibilities

I am Unit Co-ordinator for:

U22883 Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Design

U22884 Rock Mechanics and Engineering Design

U20125 Geomechanics of Natural Hazards

U20126 Geotechnics and Groundwater

I contribute towards the teaching on:

U20037 Rock Mechanics

U23512 Applications in Rock Mechanics


Numerical modelling of discontinuous media; Physical modelling; Rock and soil behaviour through field and laboratory testing.


Research profile

Explore my research profile, publications and activities on the Portsmouth Research Portal

View profile