Susan L. Tighe

Susan L. Tighe

Contact information


Susan Tighe

Biography summary

Professor Susan Tighe currently holds an Endowed Chair in Sustainable Pavement Engineering, is a founding member of the Centre for Pavement and Transportation Technology (CPATT) at the University of Waterloo. Prior to assuming the Director role which she has held since September 2010, she served as the CPATT Associate Director of Research and Technology from 2005 to 2010. She is a past Canada Research Chair in Pavement and Infrastructure Management. She is a member of the inaugural class of the New College of Scholars of the Royal Society of Canada and was named one of Canada's Top 40 Under 40 for her leadership and vision with respect to the Canadian Transportation Community. She has also received the prestigious Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE) and Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), Research & Development Medal, the Transportation of Canada Academic Merit Award, Inaugural Bleeds Black Award from the Ontario Hot Mix Producers Association and Inaugural Region of Waterloo Top 40 Under 40.

She has successfully completed over 40 graduate students since starting at the University of Waterloo in 2000, many of whom are now in academic, public and private sector leadership positions. She is an author of over 400 technical publications in pavements and infrastructure, including being the principal investigator on the 2013 Transportation Association of Canada Pavement Asset Design and Management Guide and is involved in a number of national and international research projects. She has been involved with projects in Africa, India, Chile, India, China, Australia, New Zealand and throughout North America. Dr. Tighe worked for the Ministry of Transportation Ontario prior to pursuing a career in academia. During sabbaticals she has spent time in Australia working for a contractor, and has also received academic Fellowships including the Erskine Fellowship at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, the U.K. Royal Academy of Engineering at the University of Nottingham in England and the Queensland Pavement Center located at the University of the Sunshine Coast in Australia.

Research interests

  • pavement design and management
  • asphalt pavements
  • material characterization
  • life cycle cost analysis
  • airport engineering
  • sustainability
  • green roads and climate change
  • concrete pavements
  • pavement performance modelling
  • infrastructure Management
  • maintenance
  • advanced manufacturing
  • smart infrastructure


  • 2000, Doctorate, Civil Engineering, University of Waterloo
  • 1997, Master's, Civil Engineering, University of Waterloo
  • 1993, Bachelor's, Chemical Engineering, Queen's University

Selected/recent publications

  • M. Alauddin Ahammed and Susan Tighe, 2010. "Effect of Short-term and Long-term Weather on Pavement Surface Friction", International Journal of Pavement Research and Technology.
  • Rabiah Rizvi, Vimy Henderson, Susan Tighe and Jodi Norris, 2010. "Evaluating the Use of Recycled Concrete Aggregate in Pervious Concrete Pavement", Accepted for Publication in the Transportation Research Record, Transportation Research Board, January 2010, Washington D.C
  • Antonin Du Tertre, Giovanni Cascante, and Susan Tighe, 2010. "Combining PFWD and Surface Wave Measurements for Evaluation of Longitudinal Joints in Asphalt Pavements", Submitted for Publication Transportation Research Record, Transportation Research Board, Washington D.C, January, pp. 18
  • M. Alauddin Ahammed and Susan Tighe and Tom Klement, 2010. "Quiet and Durable Pavements: Findings From An Ontario Study", Submitted for Publication, Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering, National Research Council, Volume XX, No.X4, pp. 40

Graduate studies