Singapore organized the 11th Southeast Asian Geotechnical Conference (SEAGC) in May 1993, while it was still a member of the Southeast Asian Geotechnical Society (SEAGS). The conference returns to Singapore in May 2013, after a lapse of 20 years. Singapore now has its own society, namely the Geotechnical Society of Singapore, which is a member of the Association of Geotechnical Societies of Southeast Asia (AGSSEA). The current conference, being the 18th in the series, also marks the first time that the event is held jointly under the auspices of SEAGS and AGGSEA. As such, the conference is called 18SEAGC/1AGSSEA.

The conference proceedings contain 155 technical papers with contributors from all over the world, a good number of whom hail from outside Southeast Asia. The first conference keynote lecture is delivered by Dr Brian Simpson on the use of numerical analysis using Eurocode 7. Six other keynote lectures are also presented by geotechnical experts from Southeast Asia.

Compared to the 1993 proceedings, the 2013 volume contain a significantly larger number of papers on the dominant theme of ground improvement, which are spread over four sessions hosted by ISSMGE Technical Committee TC211 on Ground Improvement. With the advancement of ground improvement equipment and techniques in the past two decades, it is now possible to support low rise buildings on improved ground rather than employ deep foundations.

Despite the upsurge in ground improvement-related papers, deep foundations still remain a popular topic with three sessions hosted by TC212 on Deep Foundations. There are papers covering complex foundation issues such as the effects of tunnel excavation or deep basement excavation on adjacent piled foundations supporting existing buildings. It is also heartening to see the emergence of new topics. The conference has one session on geotechnical reliability, which is a relatively new field hosted by TC304 Engineering Practice of Risk Assessment and Management. There is also a session on transportation geotechnics hosted by TC202. Last but not least, the Society for Rock Mechanics and Engineering Geology Singapore has co-organized a session on rock mechanics and geology. This is an important topic in many countries, including Singapore, which is presently exploring the use of underground space for various purposes.

The Editors hope that geotechnical engineers and researchers will find the technical papers in this proceedings useful and noteworthy. They would like to thank the authors for their contributions to make this conference a great success.

C F Leung, S H Goh & R F Shen