Professor Paul Steinmann

  • Professor of Computational Engineering Science (Infrastructure and Environment)

Research interests

My research interests are mainly in the areas of geometrically non-linear continuum mechanics and continuum physics with a strong focus on computational engineering. My research activities as a result cover the broad field from material modelling, multi-scale methods, configurational/failure/fracture mechanics, non-standard continua, multi-physics problems to general developments in finite element and discretisation methods.

Major scientific contributions are, e.g., in the following areas:

electro- and magneto-mechanics: phenomenological modelling and simulation of smart materials that exhibit geometrically nonlinear deformations and that change their mechanical behaviour in response to the application of electric or magnetic fields.

surface mechanics: accounting for the important role of surface and interface thermodynamics on the mechanical and non-mechanical response of miniaturized devices.

gradient plasticity: extension of classical plasticity by the addition of dislocation density motivated terms to account for scale dependence applicable to metals at the micron scale and below.

polymer curing: phenomenological and micro-mechanically based material models for the simulation of elastic and visco-elastic polymers that undergo curing processes and volume shrinkage.

configurational mechanics: field of continuum mechanics concerned with changes of the material manifold, with applications for example in fracture mechanics and growth.


I graduated with distinction from Universität Hannover as Civil Engineer in 1988. Afterwards I was research assistant at the Institute for Mechanics at Universität Karlsruhe, where I finished his PhD on “Localization Phenomena in Plastomechanics” with distinction in 1992. “Habilitation” and Venia Legendi in Mechanics for “Modelling and Simulation of Ductile Crystalline Materials” followed at Universität Hannover (completed 1996). I am Full Professor and head of the Institute of Applied Mechanics at the Department of Mechanical Engineering at FAU, where I served as spokesperson of the Department (2009-2011). I was appointed the same position at Universität Kaiserslautern (1997-2007), where I served as (Vice)-Dean (2001-2006). Since 2017 I am also Professor of Computational Engineering Science and Director of the Glasgow Computational Engineering Centre (GCEC) at the University of Glasgow.


UK Grants since 2017

EPSRC Strategic Support Package
Engineering of Active Materials by Multiscale/Multiphysics Computational Mechanics

Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award 2017

Additional information


My track record includes the above frequently cited publications in reviewed international journals in the fields of Continuum Mechanics, Material Mechanics and Computational Mechanics. I have contributed > 200 presentations, regularly as invited speaker at conferences. In 2006, I received both the IACM Fellow and the EUROMECH Fellow Awards. In 2011, I was awarded a prestigious ERC Advanced Investigator Grant. In 2017, I was awarded the Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award.

I was editor of the GAMM-Mitteilungen, Wiley (2005-2016), of 'Mechanics of Material Forces', Springer, 2005 (jointly with G.A. Maugin), of ‘Progress in the Theory and Numerics of Configurational Forces’, Springer (2009), and author of ‘Geometrical Foundations of Continuum Mechanics’, Springer (2015). I was editor of several special volumes in CMAME, IJSS, IJNME, IJES, Phil. Mag., and serve regularly as reviewer for about 20 international journals. I am member of the editorial/advisory board of some 17 international journals.

I am member of GACM, GAMM and EUROMECH and was member of the managing board of ECCOMAS, member of the IACM general council, and president of the DEKOMECH (German Committee for Mechanics), the adhering organisation to IUTAM.

In 2003/2011 I organised 2 EUROMECH colloquia, in 2008 an IUTAM symposium, and in 2014 the GAMM annual meeting with > 1,000 participants. I have (co)organised a number of specialised conferences and mini-symposia in the fields of Material Modeling, Failure Mechanics, Material Forces, Computational Mechanics and Computational Dynamics within conferences under the auspices of IACM, ECCOMAS, EUROMECH. I also regularly serve at scientific boards of international conferences in the area of Computational Mechanics.

From 2001-2007 I was member of the selection committee of the German Science Foundation (DFG) for Research Training Groups and for several committees of the DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service). I was vice-spokesperson for a national and international (jointly with University of CA, USA) Research Training Group and spokesperson of a Research Unit, all funded by the DFG.


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