Varnes Medal

Varnes Medal

The Varnes Medal is the highest award provided by the International Consortium on Landslides; it recognizes professional excellence in landslide research. Nominees for the Varnes Medal must meet at least two of the following criteria:

  • Professional excellence in landslide research
  • Professional excellence in landslide disaster risk reduction (new criteria)
  • Significant contribution to the development of ICL and IPL (new criteria)
  • Significant contribution to public education regarding landslide hazards
  • International recognition for a professional career involving landslides
  • Influential landslide research or development of methods or techniques
  • Teacher of students who work on landslide issues

Photo of the Varnes Medal awarded to Badaoui Rouhban in 2017
Varnes medal is made of pure silver commemorating David Varnes (US. Geological Survey).

The past recipients of Varnes Medal are:

  • Robert Schuster (US Geological Survey, USA) , 2nd Session of BOR/ICL at Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada in October 2003
  • John Hutchinson (Imperial Colleague, UK), 3rd Sesson of BOR/ICL at Druzba Hotel, Bratislava, Slovakia in October 2004
  • Masami Fukuoka (University of Tokyo, Japan), 4th Session of BOR/ICL at Keck Center of the National Academy of Science, Washington D.C., USA in October 2005
  • Norbert R. Morgenstern (University of Alberta, Canada), 5th Session of BOR/ICL at Bonvin Building, UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France in November 2006
  • Edward Derybyshire (University of Leicester, UK), 6th Session of BOR/ICL at Bonvin Building, UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France in November 2007
  • David Cruden (University of Alberta, Canada), 7th Session of BOR/ICL at the United Nations University, Tokyo, Japan in November 2008
  • Zaiguan Lin (Leader of China-Japan Joint research on Landslide hazard assessment at Cultural heritage sites in Xi’an. It developed to IGCP-425 “Landslide Hazard Assessment and Cultural Heritage” which was further develop to ICL and IPL), 9th Session of BOR/ICL at Bonvin Building, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France in November 2010
  • Rajendra Kumar Bhandari (Central Building Research Institute, India), 11th session of BOR/ICL, at Bonvin Building, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France in November 2012
  • Luciano Picarelli (Seconda Università di Napoli), 13th session of BOR/ICL, at National Convention Center, Beijing, China, in June 2014
  • Oldrich Hungr (University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada), at 14th BOR/ICL, Tohoku Gakuin University, Sendai, Japan, in March 2015
  • Jordi Corominas, (Technical University of Catalonia-UPC, Spain), 15th BOR/ICL, Disaster Prevention Research Institute, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan, in March 2016
  • Badaoui Rouhban (Former Director, Section for Disaster Reduction, UNESCO), 16th Session of BOR/ICL, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France in November 2016
Best Paper Award

Best Paper Award

This award is given annually for the best paper published in Landslides: Journal of International Consortium on Landslides for the year beginning with the calendar year 2004 (Vol. 1).

How to select:

  1. Judging for the award will be by members of the Best Paper Award Subcommittee.
  2. Ranking of papers by Subcommittee members will be based on the following numerical grading system:
    Scientific and technical quality 50%
    Impact on the profession and society 30%
    Quality of figures and tables 20%


  3. Based on the above rating system, subcommittee members should rank the top five papers for the year into a five-paper “short list” with the member’s choice for the best paper being number 1, the second best paper being number 2, etc. These lists should be submitted by e-mail to the Chairman of the Subcommittee.
  4. The Chairman will apply numerical scores to each short list as follows: number 1 will receive 5 points; number 2 will receive 4 points, number 3 will receive 3 points, etc.
  5. The Chairman will total the points for all of the short lists. The paper with the highest point total will receive the Best Paper Award.
  6. In case of a tie, the Chairman will call for a “tiebreaker” vote.
  7. Note for the short lists: A Subcommittee member will not be allowed to recommend a paper for which he/she is the author or coauthor.

The past recipients of the Best Paper Award are:

  • Claudio Margottini (2004) Instability and geotechnical problems of the Buddha niches and surrounding cliff in Bamiyan Valley, central Afghanistan. Vol.1, No.1 :41-51
  • Rex L. Baum, Jeffery A. Coe, Jonathan W. Godt, Edwin L. Harp, Mark E. Reid, William Z. Savage, William H. Schulz, Dianne L. Brien Alan F. Chleborad, Jonathan P. McKenna and John A. Michael, (2005) Regional landslide-hazard assessment for Seattle, Washington, USA. Vol.2, No.4:266-279
  • Farrokh Nadim, Oddvar Kjekstad, Pascal Peduzzi, Christian Herold, and Christian Jaedicke (2006) Global landslide and avalanche hotspots. Vol. 3, No. 2:159-173
  • Didier Leynaud, Nabil Sultan, and Jürgen Mienert (2007) The role of sedimentation rate and permeability in the slope stability of the formerly glaciated Norwegian continental margin: the Storegga slide model. Vol.4, No. 4:297-309
  • Adam B. Prochaska, Paul M. Santi, Jerry D. Higgins, and Susan H. Cannon (2008) A study of methods to estimate debris flow velocity. Vol.5, No.4:413-444
  • K. Lundström, R. Larsson, T. Dahlin (2009) Mapping of quick clay formations using geotechnical and geophysical methods. Vol.6, No.1:1-15
  • Christopher I. Massey, Vernon Manville, Graham H. Hancox, Harry J. Keys, Colin Lawrence, Mauri McSaveney (2010) Out-burst flood (lahar) triggered by retrogressive landsliding, 18 March 2007 at Mt Ruapehu,New Zealand—a successful early warning. Vol.7, No. 3: 303-315.
  • M.A. Brideau, A. Pedrazzini, D. Stead, C. Froese, M. Jaboyedoff and D. van Zeyl (2011): Three-dimensional slope stability analysis of South Peak, Crowsnest Pass, Alberta, Canada,  Vol 8, No 2:139-158.
  • N.M. Pinyol, E.E. Alonso, J. Corominas and J. Moya (2012): Canelles landslide: modelling rapid drawdown and fast potential sliding (Vol.9, No.1:33-51),
  • R. Sosio, G.B. Crosta and O. Hungr (2012): Numerical modeling of debris avalanche propagation from collapse of volcanic edifices (Vol.9, No.3:315-334)
  • D.M. Staley, J.W. Kean, S.H. Cannon, K.M. Schmidt, and J.L. Laber (2013: Objective definition of rainfall intensity – duration thresholds for the initiation of post-fire debris flows in southern California (Vol.10, No 5: 547–562)
  • O. Hunger, S. Leroueil, L. Picarelli (2014) The Varnes classification of landslide types, an update (Vol.11, No.2, 167-194)

  • D. Huang, D. Cen, G. Ma and R. Huang (2015) Step-path failure of rock slopes with intermittent joints (Vol.12, No.5, 911–926)

  • S. Yavari-Ramshe and B. Ataie-Ashtiani (2016) Numerical modeling of subaerial and submarine landslide-generated tsunami waves – recent advances and future challenges (Vol.13, No. 6, 1325–1368)

IPL Award for Success

IPL Award for Success

The IPL award will be given for three success projects implemented within IPL at each World Landslide Forum by evaluating the previous 3 year activities. The achievement of IPL projects is much affected by the finances and the infrastructure of the developed or developing country. The aim of the IPL Award for Success is not to select the Best IPL project, but to select the Successful IPL projects relative to the circumstances of the group.

  • Awards for the winner(s) are 3000 USD and Certificate.
  • Judging for the award will be by members of the IPL Award committee.
  • IPL Award Committee: Chairperson, 2 members and a secretary
  • Evaluation of projects will be based on the different items for types of projects.

The past recipients of the IPL Award for Success are:

The Second World Landslide Forum at FAO Headquarters, Rome, October 2011.

(1) Lynn Highland: U.S. Geological Survey, and Peter Bobrowsky: Geological Survey of Canada (Publication)

IPL 106 Best Practice handbook for landslide hazard mitigation (2002-2007)

(2) Farrokh Nadim and Bjørn Kalsnes: International Centre for Geohazards, Norway (Research)

IPL 102 Assessment of global high-risk landslide disaster hotspots (2002-2004)

IPL 144 Changing pattern of landslide risk and strategies for its management (2009-present)

 (3) Dwikorita Karnawati and Faisal Fathani: Universitas Gadjah Mada, Indonesia (Capacity Building)

IPL 158 Development of Community-based Landslide Early Warning System (2009-present)

IPL 159 Development of Education Program for Sustainable Development in Landslide Vulnerable Area through Student Community Service (2009-present)

The Third World Landslide Forum at China National Convention Center, Beijing, China, 2014

(1) Wei Shan: Research Center of Cold Regions Landslide, China

IPL-132 Research on vegetation protection system for highway soil slope in seasonal frozen regions (2008-present)

IPL-167 The effect of freezing-thawing on the stability of ancient landslide of North-Black highway (2009-present)

(2) Ogbonnaya Igwe: Department of Geology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria

IPL-150 Capacity building and the impact of climate-driven changes on regional landslide distribution, frequency and scale of catastrophe (2010 – present)

IPL-183 Landslides in West Africa: impacts, mechanism and management (2012-present)

The Fourth World Landslide Forum at the Cultural and Congress Centre in Ljubljana, Slovenia, 2017.

1) Claudio Margottini: ISPRA, Dpt. Geological Survey of Italy

IPL-106- 1 Landslide museum in Civita di Bagnoregio (2006/2008- 2012) (published in Landslides, Vol.14 (1) in 2017)

IPL-186 Rock-fall hazard assessment and monitoring in the archaelogical site of Petra, Jordan (2013 -)

IPL-217 PROTHEGO – PROTection of European Cultural HEritage from GeO – Hazards (Daniele Spizzichino/ Claudio Margottini, 2017-)

WLF4 Forum Lecture : “Rupestrian world heritage sites: Instability investigation and sustainable mitigation” by Caudio Margottini, Peter Bobrowsky, Giovanni Gigli, Heinz Ruther, Daniele Spizzichino and Jan Vlcko (published in Vol.1 ISDR-ICL Sendai Partnerships of WLF4) including one of IPL initial projects. IPL-C101-3 “The geomorphological instability of the Buddha niches and surrounding cliff in Bamiyan valley (Central Afganistan)” (2002-2015)

2) A A Virajh Dias: Central Engineering Consultancy Bureau (CECB), Sri Lanka

Model Policy Frameworks, Standards and Guidelines on Landslide Disaster Reduction (WCoE 2014-2017: Leader). Published in Vol.1 of WLF4.

IPL-155 (Leader) Determination of soil parameters of subsurface to be used in slope stability analysis in two different precipitation zones of Sri Lanka.

IPL-199 (core member); The Effect of Root Systems in Natural Slope Erosion Protection in the Hill Country of Sri Lanka

IPL-200 (core member): An Assessment of the Rock fall Susceptibility Based on Cut Slopes Adjacent to Highways and Railways.

Special Award for Appreciation

Special Award for Appreciation

The past recipients of Special awards for appreciation are:

Wolfgang Eder (Director, Davison of Earth Sciences of UNESCO) for his outstanding contribution to the establishment of ICL at 4th Session of BOR/ICL in Washington D.C., USA.

Badaoui Rouhban (Director, Section for Disaster Reduction at UNESCO) for his outstanding contribution to ICL and IPL activities since ICL foundation 2002 at ICL 10th Anniversary Conference, Kyoto, Japan in January 2012

Salvano Briceno for his outstanding contribution to ICL and IPL activities for 2002-2011 as the Director of UNISDR at ICL 10th Anniversary Conference, Kyoto, Japan in January 2012


Distinguished Student Awards

Distinguished Student Awards

This award is given to the distinguished student presented in the World Landslide Forums. Students are encouraged to present their landslide research in the form of a regular Forum paper in the student session. The first author must be a student and the paper must be presented orally by the student, the number of paper’s co-authors is limited to three (i.e. since the student is the first author, 4 in total). Eligible papers will be evaluated by a panel of participating professors. Distinguished student awards (2–3) will be made to the first authors of the best presented papers judged under the different research and educational conditions of developed and developing countries. The ICL President will present the distinguished student awards to the recipients in the closing plenary session of the WLFs.


The past recipients of the Distinguished Student Awards are:

The Third World Landslide Forum at China National Convention Center, Beijing, China, 2014

  • H Setiawan (2014) The simulations of a deep large-scale landslide near Aratozawa dam using a 3.0 MPa undrained dynamic loading ring shear apparatus.

The Fourth World Landslide Forum at the Cultural and Congress Centre in Ljubljana, Slovenia, 2017

  • T Hemalatha (2017) Adaptive Learning Techniques for Landslide Forecasting and the Validation in a Real World Deployment.
  • Andreas Schimmel (2017) Automatic detection of sediment-related disasters based on seismic and infrasound signals.
World Report on Landslides Award

Awards for ICL World Report of Landslides

The IPL World Reports on Landslides (WRL) database is created as a cooperation platform for sharing landslide case studies and the best practice in the global landslide community. ICL and IPL wish to promote and publish global landslide information using the ICL/IPL network for the ISDR-ICL Sendai Partnership 2015-2025. To advertise WRL and promote the contribution of reports two awards have been established in 2016:

  • Best Report Award
  • Reporter of the year

How to select:

1. Best Report Award

The quality committee is composed of 5-6 expert evaluators. The required single evaluation was based on three items:

a. Rating of LCI (Landslide Case identifier)
In the counting, its weight is 30% and a score from 1 to 7 was assigned. For the final score this value was multiplied by 10. Namely, LCI of 7 was evaluated to be 70 points.

b. Scientific and Technical Quality
In the counting, its weight is 40% and a score from 0 to 100 was assigned.

c. Impact on the profession and society
In the counting, its weight is 30% and a score from 0 to 100 was assigned.

Evaluation points of each Landslide Case identifier were calculated according to the following formula: LCI = (R x 0.3 x 10) + (S x 0.4) + (I x 0.3)

2. Reporter of the year

Each reporter (one report is submitted by one or two reporters. All reporters are counted in the same way independent of the order of reporter) is evaluated by the total ICL point for the year. It is automatically calculated from the report by summing up ICL points for all of his/her report submitted.

The first recipients of the ICL World Report on Landslides Awards in 2016 are:

2016 Best Report Award:  1792 Unzen Landslide and Tsunami Disaster (JPN1611131539)

Reporter of the year 2016:  Dr. Khang Dang, International Consortium on Landslides