About the Author
Tamotsu Takahashi (Kyoto, 1939) graduated as a Master in Civil Engineering at Kyoto University in 1965. From 1965 to 1967, he then worked as a research assistant at the Disaster Prevention Research Institute (DPRI) of the same university and, after a year in the Civil Engineering Department as a lecturer, he returned in 1968 to the DPRI as an associate professor. With his research on flood flow dynamics in river channels, he obtained the doctoral degree in 1972. After this, he worked as a post-doctoral fellow at Lincoln College, New Zealand, where he investigated miscellaneous problems that were associated with braided rivers. Upon returning to DPRI in Japan, he put importance on the study of sediment runoff problems that were involved with debris flow and bed load on very steep slope channels. Consequently, in 1982, he was awarded a full professorship for a newly founded research section on the investigation of anti-flood hazards systems. He then added slightly more themes to his portfolio and extended his research to the water flooding and sediment problems in urban areas. From 1992 he moved to the research section on the investigation of sedimentation problems.
After his retirement in 2003, he continued working on debris flow and sediment runoff problems as a professor emeritus at Kyoto University. From 1995 to 1997 he served as the director of DPRI and during this appointment, he has reorganized the entire DPRI and has thoroughly promoted the scientific investigation of the Great Hanshin Earthquake which took place in Kobe in 1995 as the director of DPRI and the head of the Japanese Group for the Study of Natural Disaster Science. He is now working for the foundation ‘Association for Disaster Prevention Research’ as the chief director.
Professor Takahashi has authored numerous papers and held many invited keynote lectures. He also received several awards for his outstanding work from the Japan Society of Civil Engineers and from the Japan Society of Erosion Control Engineering. His successful book ‘Debris Flow’, published in 1991 by A.A. Balkema Publishers in the IAHR monograph series was the first systematic approach to the subject and is still frequently referred to. The original Japanese language version of this current new and extended edition was received very well and the author was awarded the Publishing Culture Prize from the Japan Society of Civil Engineers in 2004 for it. He was also awarded the Akagi Prize in 2008 for his outstanding contributions to the prevention and mitigation of debris flow disasters.