Consistent with previous Workshops, four problems were feature, two on concrete dams and two on embankment dams. Computational analyses of the problems were submitted in advance to the problem formulators and presented during the Workshop. The problem formulators then prepared synthesis reports which summarized the problem, analysis data and results. Also included in these Proceedings are three papers presented during the Workshop Poster Session.
During the three years the Fourth Benchmark Workshop was held in 1996, the ICOLD Ad Hoc Committee finalized the report Reliability and Applicability of Computational Procedures for Dam Engineering. I think that the report enables the readers to recognized a hierarchy among phenomena which contribute to determine the safety of a dam – hierarchy which is based on two precise criteria of selection. First, the relevance in applications must commonly faced by dam engineers; second, emphasis must be placed on the reliability of available numerical procedures.
Accordingly, the topics developed for the Fifth Benchmark Workshop reflect this philosophy and try to respond to recommendations in the report.
Undoubtedly the addressed topics (the role played by peripheral joint and uplift pressure in arch dams, the failure mode of overtopped gravity dams, the comparison between classical analysis procedure and advance methods in embankments, the simulation of first filling of the rockfill dams) are of great interest both for practicing engineers and for analysts.
It is my hope that the solution presented in this Proceedings will become the terms of reference for the validation of numerical procedures and, at the same time, constitute a useful reference in making modelling choice.