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Earthquake Engineering Research Institute

Founded in 1948, EERI's mission is to reduce earthquake risk by (1) advancing the science and practice of earthquake engineering, (2) improving understanding of the impact of earthquakes on the physical, social, economic, political, and cultural environment, and (3) advocating comprehensive and realistic measures for reducing the harmful effects of earthquakes.

2016 Annual Meeting

Register Before Rates Go Up on Saturday, March 5

The Earthquake Engineering Research Institute will hold its 68th Annual Meeting, April 5-8, 2016, in San Francisco, California. With a theme of "Beyond the Epicenter: Expanding Our Risk Perspective," the meeting program will delve into unanticipated effects, blind spots, and new insights in earthquake engineering. Registration rates for the full meeting will increase by $100 this Saturday, March 5, 2016. 

Register for the Annual Meeting today.

More than 80 poster abstracts on new research and case studies were accepted from students and professionals from around the world. Posters include "Disaster, Decisions, Development: A Case Study for International Partnerships and Pedagogy for Tsunami Hazard Risk Mitigation" by Zahraa Saiyed (M. EERI, 2011), and Jenny Suckale; "Study on Interaction Between Rocking-Wall System and Surrounding Structural Systems" by Qingzhi Liu (M. EERI, 2012); and "San Diego-Tijuana Earthquake Scenario" by Konstantinos Kosmidis (M. EERI, 2016), Lelli Van Den Einde (M. EERI, 1998), Alvaro Celestino (M. EERI, 2005), and Amine Aboufirass (M. EERI, 2015). Poster sessions will take place on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons and evenings during the meeting.

The earthquake risk reduction community has responded to support the 2016 EERI Annual Meeting! We thank our lead sponsors FEMA and Computers and Structures, Inc. (CSI), as well as the many companies and firms sponsoring lunches, breaks, poster sessions, and the Student Design Competition. View the current list of sponsors and see what opportunities still remain on the annual meeting website.

For full program, logistics, and to register before rates go up, visit the 2016 Annual Meeting website:

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News of the Institute

Housner Fellows in Nepal

housnerIn the second week of February, the 2014-16 Class of Housner Fellows conducted field work in Nepal for their group project, "Building Code Compliance: A Case Study on Nepal." With the help of the National Society of Earthquake Technology – Nepal (NSET), the fellows facilitated workshops on building code adoption, implementation, and compliance conducted at three different municipalities in both the Kathmandu Valley (Lalitpur City) and outer districts (Bhimeshwor and Kamalamai). Each workshop had a diversity of professionals participating, including engineers, masons, social mobilizers, and political and social leaders. In addition to conducting the three workshops, the Housner Fellows also interviewed local home owners to get a personal view of the current efforts on building code compliance, and visited the mountain town of Chautara, one of the heavily hit areas by the M7.8 April 2015 Earthquake.

A news segment on the Lalitpur workshop, and interviews with participants, including Housner Fellows, was televised on Channel 24 in Nepal. The following is a link to the video segment: external link icon

The Housner Fellows are now back in their home countries and working on developing a report summarizing the findings of their interviews and workshops. The report is scheduled to be completed in early Summer 2016.

Read more about EERI's Housner Fellows program. external link icon

New Zealand Data Management Case Study Released

nz-case-studyEERI's Resilience Observatory project has just released its first case study, "Use of Data for Measuring and Monitoring Recovery following the Canterbury Earthquake Sequence," now available as a free download (PDF) on the EERI website:

In March 2014, EERI sent an interdisciplinary research team to New Zealand to study issues related to Canterbury’s recovery from the 2010-2011 earthquake sequence. The reconnaissance effort was the first case study for the Resilience Observatory project, and its primary aim was to observe and understand how stakeholders in New Zealand were measuring, monitoring, and acting upon data-driven indicators of recovery.

The EERI New Zealand team was led by Scott Miles (M. EERI, 2009), University of Washington (formerly Western Washington University), and included Chris Poland (M. EERI, 1978); Liesel Ritchie (M. EERI, 2012), Natural Hazards Center; Yu Xiao (M. EERI, 2011), Texas A&M University; and Nick Hedley (M. EERI, 2014), Simon Fraser University.

new zealand team capThe team interviewed a wide range of decision-makers and researchers. They found that a large variety of data are being collected as part of the recovery, but it does not appear the available data significantly contributes to ongoing decision making. Additionally, the large volume of data is making it challenging for organizations to analyze and interpret it for decision-making.

This research further highlights the necessity of facilitating the analysis of existing data, promoting access to data that can be compared across disasters, and the need for specific guidance on what data should be collected by researchers.

Read more about the EERI Resilience Observatory projectexternal link icon

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Learning from Earthquakes

New Information on EERI's Taiwan Earthquake Virtual Clearinghouse

taiwan1In the last month, new information has been gathered and posted on the EERI virtual clearinghouse website created for the M6.4 Meinong Earthquake in Southern Taiwan on February 5, 2016: external link icon

The clearinghouse photo gallery and data map now contain nearly 50 damage photos, taken within two days of the earthquake, by Professor Yi-Hsuan Tu (M. EERI, 2010) of National Cheng Kung University. More than 1,500 additional images from members of reconnaissance teams that visited the region, including from Kevin Moore and Anindya Dutta from SGH, will be posted in the next two weeks. Teams from Degenkolb Engineers, Gilsanz Murray Stefiecek, University of Washington, and GEER are also expected to contribute photos. EERI is seeking volunteer young members to support the processing and uploading of these images in collaboration with the EERI Young Members Committee. Interested individuals should contact EERI intern Shizza Fatima (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), who is coordinating photo upload.

Taiwan's National Center for Research on Earthquake Engineering (NCREE) has been closely collaborating with EERI and all the field teams, and has shared its list of 39 damaged sites in the Tainan area, along with coordinates, photos, and nature of structural damage. These damaged sites, along with photos, are also displayed on the EERI Map as a data layer.

EERI's Young Members Committee has also helped prepare some building damage reports on the Weiguan building, Kings Town Bank, Tachi Market, Shangshang Junior High School, and other buildings, based on information gleaned from reconnaissance information and media reports. Thanks to contributors Alvaro Canga, Pratik Deogekar, Gengrui Wei, Antonio Zaldivar, and Siang Zhou (M. EERI, 2016) from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. These reports and the NCREE damaged building list can be accessed on the Reconnaissance Info and Reports page of the clearinghouse: external link icon

In late March, EERI will host a live webinar briefing for this earthquake in collaboration with several other organizations. Presentations on findings for a variety of disciplines will be made by members from reconnaissance teams that traveled to investigate earthquake impacts. EERI plans to process a recording from the briefing and post it online for viewing after the event. Stay tuned for more information.

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News of the Profession

Structural Engineering Engagement and Equity Survey

seaoncThe Structural Engineers Association of Northern California (SEAONC) is conducting a study of compensation, employee engagement, and career satisfaction for structural engineers. The overarching objective is to identify ways in which firms can adapt their practices to retain an engaged and productive workforce. Whether you are a practicing structural engineer or started your career as one but moved onto a related field, we need your input! The online survey is completely voluntary and should take between 10-15 minutes to complete. You can reach the survey on the following link: external link icon

Any questions or comments on the survey can be directed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. external link icon

Links to Recent News and Views

Ten recent stories, reports, or opinions from around the Web:

oneAs Roads Crumble, Infrastructure Spending Hits a 30-Year Low (The Fiscal Times) Federal investment in infrastructure has dropped by half during the past three decades external link icon

twoHow an Earthquake Turned This New Zealand Town into the Art Deco Capital of the World ( Napier turned its tragic past into an architectural wonder. external link icon

threeHow NASA Accidentally Found a Way to Make Buildings Safer During Earthquakes (Government Employee) Transfer of stabilizing technology created for a violently shaking rocket. external link icon

four"Holistic engineering" in the wake of disaster (Baltimore Sun) Highlighting the work of Judith Mitrani-Reiser (M. EERI, 2001) examining physical and human infrastructure. external link icon

fiveAfghanistan’s new "Pentagon" not built to withstand major earthquake? ( Failure to meet engineering standards for earthquakes is a glaring oversight, says inspector. external link icon

sixBreaking the strongest link triggered Big Baja Earthquake (EurekAlert) A spate of major earthquakes on small faults could overturn traditional views about how earthquakes start. external link icon

sevenScientists develop new app that uses your cellphone to detect earthquakes (Los Angeles Times) "MyShake" designed to make mobile phones into data collection points and warn of shaking on the way. external link icon

eightWeak concrete blamed in Weiguan Jinlong collapse (Taipei Times) The collapse of the 17-story complex in Tainan’s Yongkang District caused 115 deaths. external link icon

nineCan earthquake analysis predict the futures for stocks? (Bloomberg Business) When pitching investors, you normally don’t want “hedge fund" and “earthquake” in the same sentence. external link icon

ten"San Andreas" Sequel in the Works (MoviePilot) After raking in a shocking $473 million worldwide, epic disaster movie to get sequel. external link icon

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Request for Qualifications - CSMIP 2016 Data Interpretation Projects

The California Strong Motion Instrumentation Program (CSMIP) of the California Geological Survey in the Department of Conservation plans to fund several data interpretation projects for the analysis and interpretation of strong-motion data recorded from earthquakes. These projects are intended to further understanding of strong ground shaking and the response of structures during earthquakes, and to increase the utilization of strong motion data in improving seismic code provisions, seismic design practices and post-earthquake response.

The CSMIP Program is soliciting for proposals from private engineering firms and universities to interpret and analyze the strong-motion data on the topics given in the Request of Qualifications (RFQ). The RFQ includes a description of the data interpretation topics, the required proposal contents, and the contract conditions. Proposals must be received by CSMIP no later than April 12, 2016. To receive a copy of the RFQ, send an e-mail to Shirley Rowley at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or contact by phone at (916) 322-3105.

Short Course on Grouting Fundamentals and Current Practice at University of Texas at Austin, June 13-17

The 37th Annual Short Course, "Grouting Fundamentals and Current Practice," will take place at University of Texas at Austin, June 13-17, 2016.

Since 1979, the five-day Grouting Fundamentals and Current Practice course has covered pressure grouting as a method to improve geotechnical characteristics of soils and rock masses, with special focus on mechanisms, theories, and practical applications of grouting to ground densification and strengthening, permeability reduction, groundwater cutoffs, and infrastructure remediation. The course faculty includes recognized international authorities and leaders of the grouting industry. For additional information visit external link icon

16th U.S.-Japan-New Zealand Workshop on the Improvement of Structural Engineering and Resiliency

The 16th U.S.-Japan-New Zealand Workshop, sponsored by ATC, Japan Structural Consultants Association, and QuakeCoRE, will be held on June 27-29, 2016, at the Todaiji Temple in Nara, Japan.

This workshop will develop policy recommendations for improved community resilience based on the current state-of-practice, innovative engineering solutions, and new and emerging technologies.

The program will be designed around participation from practicing engineers, researchers, planners, policy makers, and other risk reduction specialists, with the format including technical presentations, panel discussions, and policy-development discussions. For more information, visits the workshop page on the Applied Technology Council website. external link icon

1st International Workshop on Resilience in Torino, Italy, September 20-22

1st resilience workshopThe 1st International Workshop on Resilience will take place in Torino, Italy, September 20-22, 2016. The workshop will comprise both presentation and discussion sessions examining the state of knowledge on disaster resilience in the light of lessons learned from recent major earthquakes. Participants from Asia, Europe, Oceania, and America will discuss the new directions for performance-based seismic engineering, and provide a review of resilience theory and its theoretical and methodological approaches across cultures and contexts. More information on the workshop websiteexternal link icon

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Calls for Abstracts and Papers

Call for Abstracts: ICBEST 2017

The International Conference on Building Envelope Systems and Technologies (ICBEST) will take place May 15-18, 2017, in Istanbul, Turkey. Jointly organized by the Working Groups of Building and Construction Technologies in Architecture and Structural & Earthquake Engineering, Istanbul Technical University (ITU), Faculty of Architecture, ICBEST Istanbul is the premier conference for attendees to benefit from the cutting edge information on building envelope systems and technologies. Abstract submission deadline for the conference is April 1, 2016. More details on the conference website: external link icon

Call for Abstracts: AEG 2016 Annual Meeting September 18-24

aeg-logoThe 59th Annual Meeting of the Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists (AEG) will take place in Waikoloa Village, Hawaii, September 18-24, 2016. The meeting planning committee invites abstract submissions for technical sessions and symposia. Session topics include "Dams: Repair and Removal Projects," "Rock Mechanics," and "Volcanic and Seismic Hazards of the Circum-Pacific Region." Abstract submission deadline is May 1, 2016. More information on meeting logistics and abstract submissions at external link icon

Call for Papers: GeoMEast 2017

The GeoMEast2017 International Conference will be held in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, July 15-19, 2017. The organizing committee invites papers and abstracts for this sustainable civil infrastructures conference with a theme of "Sustainable Civil Infrastructures: Innovative Infrastructure Geotechnology." GeoMEast2017 will provide a showcase for recent developments and advancements in design, construction, and safety inspections of transportation infrastructures, and offer a forum to discuss and debate future directions for the 21st century. Details on the conference and abstract submissions can be found at external link icon

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Chapter Spotlight

NorCal Chapter Discussion: Vulnerable Concrete Buildings

eerincConcrete buildings with known design flaws continue to be responsible for a large percentage of earthquake fatalities. The 2011 Christchurch earthquake and recent Kaohsiung, Taiwan event highlight devastating failures of deficient concrete buildings. The Northern California Chapter of EERI will host a conversation on vulnerable concrete buildings in the Association of Bay Area Governments auditorium in Oakland, CA, from 6:00-7:00 pm, on March 15, 2016.

RSVP by March 9. More information on the meeting at external link icon

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Earthquake Spectra: February 2016 Issue

spectra feb2016The February 2016 issue of Earthquake Spectra (volume 32, issue 1) is now available online at

Print copies of the new issue of Earthquake Spectra have been mailed, and you may order additional copies at

This issue features over 25 research manuscripts and an "Analytical Study of Mobile Home Response to the 2014 South Napa Earthquake" by Bruce Maison (M. EERI, 1990) and Kelly Cobeen (M. EERI, 2000).

If you have questions about this, or any issue, contact Managing Editor Liz Stalnaker at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Earthquake Spectra: Preprint Manuscripts

spectra 150Four preprint manuscripts have been posted to the Earthquake Spectra website prior to formal publication. The papers to be published are:

  • "Response-History Analysis for the Design of New Buildings in the NEHRP Provisions and ASCE/SEI 7 Standard: Part IV - A Study of Assumptions" by Jordan A. Jarrett (M. EERI, 2013), Reid B. Zimmerman (M. EERI, 2013), Finley A. Charney (M. EERI, 1983), and Afshar Jalalian (M. EERI, 2012).
  • "Experimental Study on Lateral Strength Evaluation of Unreinforced Masonry-Infilled RC Frame" by Kiwoong Jin, Ho Choi, and Yoshiaki Nakano (M. EERI, 2001).
  • "Relative Differences between Nonlinear and Equivalent-Linear 1-D Site Response Analyses" by Byungmin Kim (M. EERI, 2014), Youssef M. A. Hashash (M. EERI, 1999), Jonathan P. Stewart (M. EERI, 1994), Ellen M. Rathje (M. EERI, 1996), Joseph A. Harmon (M. EERI, 2013), Michael I. Musgrove, Kenneth W. Campbell (M. EERI, 1975), and Walter J. Silva (M. EERI, 1988).
  • "Physically Parameterized Prediction Equations for Significant Duration in Active Crustal Regions" by Kioumars Afshari (M. EERI, 2015) and Jonathan P. Stewart (M. EERI, 1994)

To read all current preprint manuscripts posted, visit Earthquake Spectra preprints. external link icon

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Member Spotlight

New Bronze Subscribing Member: Haselton Baker Risk Group

sp3 id colorEERI welcomes new Bronze Subscribing Member, Haselton Baker Risk Group, created in 2014, to produce software that meets the needs of cutting-edge engineering design professionals and enables engineers to quickly implement advanced assessment methods into their practice

The Seismic Performance Prediction Program (SP3), created by the Haselton Baker Risk Group, brings the next generation of seismic loss assessment to the engineering world. Placing the advanced FEMA P-58 methodology into the hands of engineers, SP3 enables quick and unprecedented understanding of the relationship between building-specific features and seismic risk. With a user-friendly interface and advanced numerical methods, in-depth probabilistic seismic loss results can be obtained in minutes, enabling efficient and effective decision-making. More information at external link icon

Happy 60th Birthday to SGH

sgh-videoOur congratulations to EERI Bronze Subscribing Member Simpson Gumpertz & Heger, which turns 60 this year and is celebrating with a series of videos highlighting SGH offices, educational opportunities, and anniversary events: external link icon

Happy Birthday SGH!

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