This volume is dedicated to Professor Donald E. Grierson to celebrate his long career as a distin­guished engineer, researcher, and educator on the occasion of his retirement. Professor Grierson has been a faculty member in the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Waterloo, Canada, since receiving his Ph. D. degree there in 1968.

Professor Grierson has held visiting appointments at various engineering institutions in North America and abroad, including the University of California at Berkeley in the USA in 1970/71, Imperial College in England in 1974, University of Liege in Belgium in 1975, Politecnico di Milano in Italy in 1975, University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) in the USA in 1979/80, National Defense Academy of Japan in 1986, Heriot-Watt University in Scotland in 1991, the University of Brescia in Italy in 1992, the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in 2001, and the Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland in 2004.

In his thirty-eight years of academic career, Professor Grierson has carried out research and made significant contributions in many areas of structural engineering; among these are structural plasticity, structural optimization, evolutionary computing, failure-load analysis, fail-safe design, performance-based seismic design, design under abnormal loading, and computational conceptual design. Some of his notable contributions include deformation analysis of elasticplastic frames, optimal design of structural steel frameworks, optimal sizing, geometrical and topological design, and progressive-failure analysis of buildings subjected to abnormal loading. His erudite knowledge of structural optimization and profound insight into structural plasticity, engineering computing, and structural design have been amply demonstrated through his approximately 200 research articles in internationally renowned scientific and engineering journals, and conference proceedings. His research work and that of his students is the basis for structural steel design software used in North American engineering institutions and consulting offices since the 1980s.

Professor Grierson received the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering E. Whitman Wright Award in 1995 for excellence in computer-aided design. He was the co-recipient of the American So­ciety of Civil Engineering State-of-the-Art Award in 1998 and 2004 for his contributions in structural optimization and optimal structural design. He was honoured by the Structural Engineering Institute of the American Society of Civil Engineering with the Distinguished Service Award in 2003. He has been a member of a number of professional societies, editorial boards of international scientific journals, international scientific committees and organizing committees for international meetings.

Not only is Professor Grierson a leading researcher in applied mechanics and structural en­gineering, he is also an eminent educator. Professor Grierson has given invited lectures at many universities and institutions, and has been a keynote speaker in a goodly number of international conferences. Professor Grierson has devoted his academic career to the promotion of the discipline of computer-aided structural analysis and design through teaching and training of highly qualified re­searchers. He has supervised nearly forty graduate students, many undergraduate research assistants, postdoctoral fellows, and visiting scholars. Professor Grierson’s influence on students was enormous. Innumerable students and researchers have benefited through his lectures, presentations, discussions, and writings. Professor Grierson was an early contributor to the Solid Mechanics Division, and was instrumental in the reformation of the Structures, Mechanics & Construction Division of the

University of Waterloo. He has demonstrated exceptional leadership in mentoring young faculty members. His passion for teaching and dissemination of knowledge was honored by the Sandford Fleming Foundation Teaching Excellence Award in 2002 in recognition of an exemplary record of outstanding teaching, concern for students and a commitment to the development and enrichment of engineering education.

Professor Grierson’s achievements over many years and in many ways demonstrate that his qualities as a scholar, educator, and contributor are of the highest level. His academic career as a researcher and teacher is exemplary for his colleagues and engineers of younger generations in terms of teaching and learning, research and scholarship, leadership and service to society.