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Presidents’ Award, 2020

Professor Bruce Misstear

Bruce MisstearBruce Misstear is a hydrogeologist with more than 40 years’ experience of working in academia and consultancy. He is a Fellow Emeritus of Trinity College Dublin and is both a Chartered Geologist and Chartered Engineer.

Following undergraduate studies in geology at Trinity College Dublin and a Masters degree in Hydrogeology from the University of Birmingham (1976), Bruce Misstear worked as a hydrogeological consultant on groundwater development in several countries including Nigeria, Sudan, Burma and Oman. He subsequently became head of the Groundwater Department at the international consultancy Mott MacDonald and a Director of its Water and Environment Division.

In the mid-1990s Bruce joined the ranks of academia at Trinity College Dublin as a full-time teacher and researcher until his retirement in 2018 (he now teaches part-time). He also served for four years as the university’s first Dean of Students.

Professor Misstear’s research activities include the investigation of flow pathways of diffuse agricultural pollutants, the linkages between groundwater vulnerability and groundwater recharge, and the impacts of domestic wastewater systems on private wells. He is the author or co-author of more than 150 publications on groundwater science and environmental engineering, and lead author of the textbook Water Wells and Boreholes. Shortly before his retirement he embarked on a research thesis on the Hydrogeology of Irish Holy Wells, which he plans to publish as a book.

In 2012, he was elected Vice President for Finance and Membership of the International Association of Hydrogeologists and in 2016 became Secretary General. Amongst his activities as a member of the Executive, Bruce Misstear has led initiatives concerned with enhancing IAH’s role in education, updating the Association’s rules, various international engagement activities, acting as link person between the organising committees and IAH Council for the congresses in 2015 (Rome), 2017 (Dubrovnik) and 2019 (Malaga), coordinating recent actions carried out under the 2011-2020 Forward Look Plan, and identifying key challenges for the next planning period. Bruce Misstear is an excellent ambassador for groundwater and for IAH. He is a very worthy recipient of the 2020 Presidents’ Award.

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