CHIAN Siau Chen, Darren

Assistant Professor

Postal Address: Department of Civil and
  Environmental Engineering,
  National University of Singapore
  1 Engineering Drive 2, E1A 07-03
  Singapore 117576
Tel: (65)651 64729
Office: E1-05-12


Dr. Darren Chian Siau Chen obtained his PhD from Cambridge University in 2012. His core expertise is on earthquake engineering and land reclamation.

Dr. Chian’s contribution in earthquake engineering lies in the field of damage vulnerability of underground structures in earthquake induced soil liquefaction. He was funded by the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to carry out reconnaissance missions at the 2009 Padang, 2011 Tohoku and 2016 Muisne earthquakes.

Dr. Chian is an enthusiast of recycling waste material to good use. He is actively involved in collaborative research projects with local government agencies to recycle unwanted and contaminated soils from underground construction projects and sea dredging as land reclamation fill materials.

Dr. Chian is a nominated member of three International Technical Councils under the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE). Dr. Chian also sits in the technical committee of SPRING Singapore to oversee and provide advice on geotechnical engineering practices in Singapore. He is presently the youngest elected Vice President of the Geotechnical Society of Singapore (GeoSS).

Dr. Chian was interviewed by the media from Singapore (Channel NewsAsia and Straits Times), USA (Northwestern News and The Edge), UK (BBC) and Denmark (Danish Broadcasting). Recently, Dr. Chian’s research work on catastrophe modelling at NUS led to his award of the prestigious Top 10 Innovators Under 35 in Asia by the MIT Technology Review in 2016. Other achievements include a 1st Prize in a National Technical Paper Competition and the Best Young Researcher Award at the 8th International Conference on Urban Earthquake Engineering in 2013 and 2011 respectively.


  • Post-doctoral Fellow, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 2011-13
  • Teaching Assistant, Cambridge University, 2008-11
  • Civil Engineer, Defence Science and Technology Agency, 2006-08


  • Ph.D., Cambridge University, 2012
  • B.Eng. (1st Class), Nanyang Technological University, 2006

Honours & Professional Activities


  • Top 10 MIT Innovators Under 35 Asia, 2016
  • 1st Prize, Geotechnical Engineering Technical Paper Competition, GeoSS, 2013
  • Best Young Researcher Award, 8th International Conference on Urban Earthquake Engineering, 2011
  • Ford of Great Britain Trust Grant, 2011
  • Atkins Prize in the Annual Geotechnical Research Workshop, 2010
  • Swiss Society for Earthquake Engineering and Structural Dynamics SGEB Grant, 2010
  • William George Collins Endowment Fund Grant, 2010
  • Lundgren Research Award, 2009


  • Innovative Teaching Award (Silver), Faculty Teaching Excellence, 2016
  • Honours List, Faculty Teaching Excellence, 2015 and 2016
  • Invited Committee Member, Engineering Education Enhancement and Research, University of Hong Kong, 2015-Current
  • Associate Fellow, Higher Education Academy, United Kingdom, 2012-Current


  • Vice President, Geotechnical Society of Singapore, 2016-17
  • Bronze Award, SPRING Singapore Accreditation Council, 2015
  • Vice Chair, Student and Young Engineers Chapter, Geotechnical Society of Singapore, 2015-16
  • Technical Committee Member, Site Investigation Inspection Body, SPRING Singapore Accreditation Council, 2015-Current
  • Nominated Member, International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, TC104: Physical Modelling in Geotechnics, 2015-Current
  • Nominated Member, International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, TC203: Earthquake Geotechnical Engineering and Associated Problems, 2015-Current
  • Nominated Member, International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, TC217: Land Reclamation, 2015-Current
  • Editorial Board, International Journal of Physical Modelling in Geotechnics, ICE UK, 2015-Current
  • Editorial Board, Frontiers in Built Environment, Switzerland, 2015-Current


  • Co-Editor and Technical Committee Member, International Conference on Soft Ground Engineering (ICSGE), 2016
  • Guest Editor, International Journal of Geoengineering Case Histories (IJGCH), 2015-Current
  • Technical Committee Member, Underground Singapore, 2014 and 2016
  • Organising Committee, Young Researchers’ Workshop, 10th International Conference on Urban Earthquake Engineering (10CUEE), 2013.
  • Cambridge Overseas Trust, 2008-11
  • Singapore Contractors Association Gold Medal, 2006
  • Meinhardt Scholarship, 2006
  • Industrial Attachment Prize, 2005
  • Undergraduate President Research Scholar, 2004-05
  • Bronze Prize in the CoE Technology Research Presentation, 2005
  • Lee Foundation Award, 2005
  • NTU Alumni Scholarship, 2005
  • Reviewed papers for Geotechnique Journal, Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering Journal, International Journal of Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering, Journal of Earthquake and Tsunami, International Journal of Physical Modelling of Geotechnics, Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering, Geotechnical Testing Journal, Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering, International Journal of Geomechanics, Journal of Geotechnical and Geological Engineering, Structures, Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering, Arabian Journal of Geosciences, Indian Geotechnical Journal.

Research Interests

  • Earthquake Engineering
  • Centrifuge Modelling
  • Ground Improvement
  • Post-Failure Field Investigation
  • Protective Technology
  • Remote Sensing


Please click to view Dr Chian's publication list.

Last Updated on 14 June, 2018 by Department of Civil Enginering