The South African Chapter of the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) established in 1994.
You will find on this site comprehensive information on Geosynthetics – what they are, their functions, applications and technical information – together with current news on happenings in the Geosynthetic sector in South Africa. We will provide information on upcoming conferences and events locally and worldwide plus offer reports emerging from these conferences and news from relevant industry peers.
GIGSA was founded in 1994 by a group of suppliers, installers, consultants, a regulator and an academic at the Faculty of Engineering of the University of the Witwatersrand. The founding of GIGSA coincided with the publication of the first edition of the Minimum Requirements Series by the then Department of Water Affairs and Forestry. The intention of the Minimum Requirements was to regulate waste management as a whole, but also waste disposal by landfill in South Africa, which made the use of geomembranes mandatory. This reinforced the need for an organization like GIGSA, as geosynthetics were largely unknown construction materials at that time.
GIGSA was, furthermore, founded as the South African Chapter of the International Society of Geosynthetics (IGS). The IGS was established in 1984 with, in broad terms, the same objectives as GIGSA. The IGS became the first non-founding member of the Federation of Geo-Engineering Societies (FedIGS) in 2011. The founding members of the FedIGS are the International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE), the International Society of Rock Mechanics (ISRM) and the International Association for Engineering Geology and the Environment (IAEG). The aim of the FedIGS is to facilitate collaboration and provide means of structured and formal communication between the organizations.
To promote the understanding and appropriate use of geosynthetic technology throughout South Africa
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Since GIGSA's establishment it has made a number of awards to eminent members, in line with the objectives given in GIGSA's constitution. Five award categories have evolved:
The President's Award
Honorary Awards for service to the industry
Development and Technology
Currently under development.