The Royal Academy of Engineering is to award its 2005 Prince Philip Medal to Professor James Dooge FREng, retired Chair in Civil Engineering, University College Dublin, recognising him as an outstanding figure in the field of hydrology.
Professor Dooge is one of the most eminent engineers to have come out of Ireland. Following 15 years of professional practice in hydraulic engineering and hydro-electric design, he established his academic career as Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Cork, leading the many advances in the application of linear systems theory to hydrology.
He also pursued a career in politics, being elected to the Irish Senate in 1961 having been nominated by the Institution of Engineers of Ireland. A veteran of numerous committees and boards including Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the World Climate Impact Studies Programme (1980 – 90), President of the International Commission on Water Resources (1971 – 75), President of the International Association for Hydrological Sciences (1975 – 79) and President of the Royal Irish Academy in 1987 – 90.
Elected as a foreign member of the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2000, he maintains an interest and involvement in hydrology and still publishes in leading journals.
The unique award, instigated in 1989 by Prince Philip, is not made every year - only periodically to ’an engineer of any nationality who has made an exceptional contribution to engineering as a whole through practice, management or education’.
He will receive the medal from Lord Sainsbury of Turville, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Science and Innovation on Thursday 2 June at the Academy’s Awards Dinner in London.
Notes for editors
The Prince Philip Medal, instigated in 1989, is awarded periodically to an engineer of any nationality "who has made an exceptional contribution to engineering as a whole through practice, management or education." The list of previous winners is short but very eminent: Professor William Bonfield CBE, FREng, FRSA, Professor of Medical materials at the University of Cambridge, for his outstanding achievements in developing and taking right through to commercialisation and clinical use the world leading ’artificial bone’ material; the late Sir Frank Whittle OM CBE FREng FRS in 1991 for the development of the jet engine; Sir Denis Rooke CBE FRS FREng in 1992 for changing the face of the UK gas industry; Professor Charles Kao CBE FREng FRS in 1996 for the invention of optical fibres; Professor John Argyris FREng FRS jointly with Professor Ray Clough in 1997 for developing the technique of finite element analysis; Sir John Browne FREng, Chief Executive of BP Amoco plc, in 1999 for his engineering and managerial achievements in creating Britain’s biggest company; the Academy’s President Sir Alec Broers FREng FRS, Vice Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, in 2000 both for pioneering miniature electronic circuits on silicon chips and for building the university’s links with industry; Philip Ruffles CBE RDI FREng FRS for his key role behind Rolls-Royce’s award-winning Trent family of engines, which have captured over half the global market and Professor David Rhodes, Executive Chairman of Filtronic plc, in recognition for his outstanding research expertise in communications technology which he developed into a highly successful world-wide company.
Professor James Dooge is one of the most eminent engineers to have come out of Ireland. Following a degree in Civil Engineering at University College Dublin, graduating in 1942, he pursued the early years of his career in the practice of main river improvement and hydro-electric design under many distinguished Irish engineers of the period. Under the influence of the late Vernon Hardy, his lifelong interest in hydrology was stimulated. This was followed by his Masters Degree in Civil Engineering from University College Dublin in 1952 and, unusually, his MSc degree in Fluid Mechanics and Hydraulics from the University of Iowa whilst on leave of absence in 1956. In 1958 he was appointed Professor of Civil Engineering at University College Cork where he remained for twelve happy and fruitful years. It was here that he established his academic credentials by leading the many advances in the application of linear systems theory to hydrology in general and rainfall run-off modelling processes in particular. He returned to University College Dublin in 1970, when he was appointed to the Chair in Civil Engineering, remaining until his retirement in 1984.
Jim Dooge has always had an interest in politics and this he was able to pursue in parallel with his academic career. He was first elected to the Irish Senate in 1961. He retired from public life in 1987 - but not before having been Chairman of the Irish Senate and at various times leader of the opposition or Leader of the House. In 1981 he had been appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs by the then Taoiseach, Garrett Fitzgerald. He examined a PhD candidate for the University of Birmingham whilst chairing a meeting at the Royal Society of London whilst Foreign Minister; a rather unique combination of skills which provide some indication of the calibre of the man.
He has served as Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the World Climate Impact Studies Programme 1980 – 90; as a member of the International Decade for Natural Disasters Reduction advisory board on behalf of the Secretary General of the UN; been President of the International Commission on Water Resources (1971 – 75); President of the International Association for Hydrological Sciences (1975 – 79) and President of the International Council of Scientific Unions (1980 – 86). He was President of the Royal Irish Academy in 1987 – 90 and elected as a foreign member of the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2000. Jim Dooge has continued his interest and involvement in hydrology and still publishes in leading journals. His irrepressible enthusiasm is extremely contagious and he has been directly responsible for ‘converting’ many young engineers into adopting a multi-disciplinary approach to engineering hydrology.
Founded in 1976, the Royal Academy of Engineering promotes the engineering and technological welfare of the country. Our fellowship - comprising the UK’s most eminent engineers - provides the leadership and expertise for our activities, which focus on the relationships between engineering, technology, and the quality of life. As a national academy, we provide independent and impartial advice to Government; work to secure the next generation of engineers; and provide a voice for Britain’s engineering community.
For more information please contact
Dr Claire McLoughlin at the Royal Academy of Engineering