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Field Missions Enhance Earthquake Risk Assessment - GEM Foundation


Mar 27, 2024

Mar 14, 2024

March 14, 2024. In a webinar hosted by EEFIT and SECED in collaboration with the Global Earthquake Model (GEM) Foundation, GEM engineers shed light on the pivotal role of field missions in advancing earthquake risk assessment methodologies. The webinar titled 'Earthquake Loss Modelling for Disaster Risk Management: Linking Field Missions to Probabilistic Risk' featured Vitor Silva, Head of Risk Engineering, and Anirudh Rao, Senior Seismic Risk Modeller at GEM.

Field missions emerged as a foundation for refining existing risk models and preparing for future seismic events. Vitor underscored the significance of field missions in updating exposure models, crucial components of earthquake risk assessment. He cited an instance following an earthquake in Turkey where field data uncovered that some modern buildings collapsed, challenging assumptions about adherence to seismic design standards. This revelation prompted revisions to the exposure model, highlighting the need to align models with real-world scenarios.

Anirudh underscored the importance of field missions in calibrating vulnerability models by providing essential data on the damage sustained by different building classes. Collaborations such as GEM's partnership with Netanya after the Gorkha earthquake in Nepal allowed for the refinement of risk models through extensive damage data analysis, enhancing forecasting accuracy.

Moreover, field missions contribute to improving ShakeMaps. Vitor illustrated this point with a case study from New Zealand, where incorporating macroseismic intensity data  post-earthquake led to significantly improved loss calculations compared to scenarios without such data, underlining the critical role of field data in refining scenario hazard assessments.

In conclusion, the webinar's Q&A session highlighted the indispensable nature of field missions in gathering data essential for enhancing earthquake risk assessment methodologies. By validating exposure models, calibrating vulnerability models, and refining scenario hazard maps, field missions pave the way for more accurate risk assessments, ultimately improving preparedness for future seismic events.

With approximately 160 online participants, the webinar was a success and served as a forum for knowledge exchange and collaboration, furthering efforts towards global earthquake resilience.

If you missed the webinar, watch the recording on YouTube:

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