James Jenkins

James T. Jenkins

Walter S. Carpenter Jr. Professor of Engineering Emeritus
Civil and Environmental Engineering
Hollister Hall, Room 409


Jenkins received a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Northwestern University and a PhD in Mechanics from the Johns Hopkins University. After post-doctoral years in France and Scotland, he joined the Department of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics at Cornell University, where he occupied every academic rank and served as Chair. When that department was closed in January of 2009, he joined the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, where he is presently the Walter S. Carpenter, Jr. Professor of Engineering. In 2001, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Rennes 1, France. His interests in granular materials evolved from his dissertation research on liquid crystals and other anisotropic fluids; and, for the past thirty years, he has been engaged in developing models to describe their static and dynamic behavior.

Research Interests

In the past calendar year, I worked with Italian colleagues to develop rheological models for dense, shearing flows of inelastic particles; to refine of a description of size-segregation in dense granular flows and test it against numerical simulations; and to apply a description of dense suspensions to simple shearing flows and to compare its predictions of particle and normal stress difference with those measured in numerical simulations. A graduate student, whose committee I co-chaired, completed a dissertation on the mechanics of tissue growth and change of shape.

Teaching Interests

Jenkins' teaching focuses on Theoretical Mechanics, especially the mechanics of continuous media and the mechanics of aggregates of discrete media, including their interactions with gases and liquids; and Applied Mathematics, especially the teaching of Mathematics to undergraduate Engineering students.

Service Interests

Jenkins is a member of the Engineering Advisory Council of the Wallace H. Coulter School of Engineering of Clarkson University. He is secretary of l'Association pour l'Etude de la Micro-Mécanique des Milieux Granulaires. He presently serves on the scientific committees of several international workshops and meetings and as a reviewer for more than twenty international journals and organizations. At the end of December, he completed six years of service as an Associate Editor of the Proceedings of the Royal Society. At Cornell, he is a member of the University Hearing Board.

Selected Publications

  • Jenkins, James Thomas. 2016. "Forward." In Shapes and Dynamics of Granular Minor Planets: The Dynamics of Deformable Bodies Applied to Granular Objects in the Solar System , edited by I. Sharma. Verlag:Berlin: Springer.
  • Jenkins, James Thomas. 2015. "Kinetic theories for collisional grain flow." In Handbook of Granular Materials , edited by S. Franklin and M. Shattuck, Eds , 155-186. .
  • Larcher, M., James Thomas Jenkins. 2013. "Segregation and mixture profiles in dense, inclined flows of two types of spheres." Physics of Fluids (25): 113301.
  • Jenkins, James Thomas, D. Berzi. 2013. "Inclined granular flows supported on a collisional shear layer." In Powders and Grains 2013 , 626-629. AIP Conference Proceedings.
  • Larcher, M., James Thomas Jenkins. 2013. "Size Segregation in Dry Flows of Binary Granular Mixtures." In Powders and Grains 2013 , 718-721. AIP Conference Proceedings.

Selected Awards and Honors

  • Plenary Lecturer, Powders & Grains 2017, Toulouse, France 2017
  • Plenary Lecturer, Engineering Mechanics Institute, ASCE Stanford University 2015
  • James M. and Marsha D. McCormick Advising Award (College of Engineeing) 2011
  • College of Engineering Teaching Award 2006
  • Docteur Honoris Causa (Université de Rennes 1) 2001


  • BS (Mechanical Engineering), Northwestern University, 1964
  • Ph D (Mechanical Engineering), Johns Hopkins University, 1969