DFI Announces Winner of 2016 Student Paper Competition 

August 18, 2016, Hawthorne NJ:

Youssef Bougataya, EIT, who recently earned his M.S. in civil engineering from Oregon State University, is the winner of the DFI Educational Trust 2016 Student Paper Competition. 

The winning paper is titled “Region Specific Calibration of Resistance Factors for Use with Static and Wave Equation Analyses of Driven Piles.” In it, resistance factors for use with Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) and the Wave Equation Analysis of Piles (WEAP) and a static analysis method are calibrated for use with piles driven in the Puget Sound Lowlands. A database of driven piles was used as the basis for the interpreted reference capacity. When compared to the AASHTO (2014) recommended resistance factors that are based on a national database, the region-specific resistance factors based on WEAP at end-of-drive increased by 50%, and are associated with a bias of 0.99 and a coefficient of variation (COV) of 26%, indicating relatively good accuracy. The paper discusses the calibration framework implemented, which can be used as the basis for other regions, and demonstrates the benefit of using a high-quality, region-specific database on the resulting calibrated resistance factors and useable pile capacity.

Bougataya is a staff geotechnical engineer II at PBS Engineering and Environmental in Portland, Ore. He holds a B.S degree in civil engineering from “Ecole Mohammadia d’Ingenieurs” in Rabat, Morocco. He was the recipient of the 2015 DFI Educational Trust At-Large Scholarship supporting future leaders in the deep foundations industry.

The first runner-up for the Student Paper Competition is Shuihan Li, a current M.S. student at Ryerson University in Toronto. His paper is titled “Experimental Investigation of Cement Mixing to Improve Champlain Sea Clay.” 

Bougataya and will attend the DFI Annual Conference in New York City, October 12-14, to present his winning paper and and both he and Li will receive the competition award plaques at the conference banquet. They will also have their papers published in the DFI Journal, and receive a library of up to 20 DFI publications and a gratis two-year individual membership in DFI.











About the DFI Educational Trust: The Deep Foundations Institute Educational Trust ( is an independent, 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization established in 2006 by the Deep Foundations Institute (DFI) as its charitable arm. The mission of the Trust is to support and encourage individuals in the fields of study related to the deep foundation industry by providing scholarships and opportunities to meet and work with deep foundation industry leaders.

About the Deep Foundations Institute (DFI)
DFI ( is an international association of contractors, engineers, suppliers, academics and owners in the deep foundations industry. Our multi-disciplinary membership creates a consensus voice and a common vision for continual improvement in the planning, design and construction of deep foundations and excavations. We bring together members for networking, education, communication and collaboration. With our members, we promote the advancement of the deep foundations industry through technical committees, educational programs and conferences, publications, research, government relations and outreach. DFI has more than 3,300 members worldwide.

Youssef Bougataya, DFI Educational Trust 2016 Student Paper Competition Winner

Shuihan Li, DFI Educational Trust 2016 Student Paper Competition Runner-up