Nemkumar Banthia FRSC, (born 1959) is an Indian-born Canadian engineer and professor of civil engineering at the University of British Columbia and the CEO of IC-IMPACTS. He is best known for his research in the fields of cement-based and polymer-based fiber reinforced composites, particularly on testing and standardization, fracture behavior, strain-rate effects, durability and development of sustainable materials.
Banthia was born in 1959 in Nagpur, India. Growing up in India, he was concerned with the poor quality of housing, poor quality of water, and the little state of transportation infrastructure. This further motivated him to pursue a field where he could transform societies and create healthy communities and vibrant economies by creating proper infrastructure. He obtained a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Nagpur University and a Master of Technology in Structural Engineering in 1982, from the Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi. Banthia then moved to Canada where he obtained his doctorate in Civil Engineering Materials from UBC in 1987.
Banthia’s main area of research is fiber-reinforced composites and is he is credited for his contributions to the fundamental understanding of sprayed concrete including particle and fiber kinematics, rebound modeling, in-situ quality control and performance characterization. Banthia is a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair and previous Distinguished University Scholar at the University of British Columbia. He is also a fellow of the American Concrete Institute, the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering, the Indian Concrete Institute, and the Canadian Academy of Engineering.
Banthia has served on numerous committees and is currently actively involved with CSA: Canadian Highway Bridge Design Code (CHBDC) as the Chair of Technical Subcommittee on Durability. He also serves on Editorial Boards of eight international journals and is the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Cement and Concrete Composites. With an Impact Factor of 4.265 the journal has the highest Impact Factor in the field.
Conferences and seminars
Through seminars and other events, Banthia contributes towards continuing education of practicing engineers, graduate students and other institutions, business personnel and technicians.
Some of his most recent involvements, with international conferences, include:
- Chair Steering Committee, PROTECT2017
- Conference Co-Chair CONSEC2016
- Conference Chair, BEFIB 2016
- Conference Co-Chair, ACMBS-XI
- Chair Steering Committee, PROTECT2015
- Conference Chair, ConMat’15
Banthia has more than 450 research publications with an outstanding H-index value of 39 (Web of Science). To date, he holds 8 patents, has published over 450 refereed papers and over 30 books, edited volumes, and special journal issues.
Awards and honours
Banthia was inducted as a Distinguished University Scholar at UBC in 2003 and was appointed as a Senior Canada Research Chair in Infrastructure Rehabilitation and Sustainability in 2006. He was honoured by the British Columbia Innovation Council by its Solutions Through Research Award and jointly by the Seoul National University and the Korea Concrete Institute by their Distinguished Researcher Award. Some of Banthia’s recent academic and professional awards and distinctions include:
- Industry Marvel Award by Darpan Magazine, September 2017
- World CSR Excellence Award of Global CSR Foundation, March 2017. Award given in Mumbai, India.[
- Drishti Award for Innovations in Science and Technology, November 2015
- Special Commemorative Conference organized by American Concrete Institute to honor N. Banthia in Mumbai, India, December 2015.
- Best Paper Award from the Int. J of Civil Structural Health Monitoring [Paper in 1:25-35, 2011] Award presented in November 2013
- Aftab Mufti Medal of the International Society for Structural Health Monitoring of Intelligent Infrastructure (ISHMII) November 2013
- Horst Leipholz Medal, Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (2012)
- Killam Research Prize, UBC (2012)