Quantitative values for mechanical properties of materials are required in the simulation of the behavior of structures and systems in several engineering domains: civil engineering (buildings, bridges, roads, …), mechanical engineering (aircraft, cars, …), biomedical engineering (implants, scaffolds, etc.) and electronic engineering (semiconductor materials). In addition, the knowledge of these material properties provides a means to follow-up the health of a structure or system during operation and to estimate the remaining lifetime. The proposed novel hybrid material characterization method combines two distinct approaches to estimate mechanical material parameters, which has never been attempted before. By using laser Doppler vibrometry for the optical measurement of both resonating (at low frequencies) and propagating surface waves (at high frequencies), modal parameters and wave propagation characteristics can be derived simultaneously. By comparing these results with Finite Element and analytical models and by using an inverse modelling approach with intelligent optimization algorithms, it will be possible to identify more material parameters with an improved accuracy in a reduced measuring time. This will allow applications on more complex materials (e.g. layered poro-elastic road surface) in an in-situ environment. The proposed method will lead to several innovations, in the fields of measuring, data processing and optimization, and will be validated in three different applications: asphalt pavements (civil engineering), composite materials (mechanical engineering), and a tympanic membrane and bone material (biomedical engineering).