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GEM at Jornadas de Amenaza y Riesgo Sísmico 2018 in Bogotá, Colombia


Jul 2, 2018

From February 19th to 21st, the GEM Foundation was hosted by the Colombian Geological Service during their Jornadas de Amenaza y Riesgo Sísmico 2018, three days dedicated to discuss seismic hazard and risk assessment, and its application in structural design and building code regulations.


One full day was also dedicated to GEM’s OpenQuake engine. More than 220 people attended the event, among whom were hazard and risk modelers, public and private stakeholders, and students of Engineering and Earth Science. To open the three-day workshop, Dr Óscar Eladio Paredes, Director General of the SGC said. “We take the challenge of knowing the seismic hazard and risk as rigorously as possible. Likewise, we are aware that knowledge does not come from a single institution, and this implies a greater challenge, and that is to build it with the contribution of an open and participative technical community. This approach has allowed the Geological Service to explore novel methodologies and establish alliances with national and international experts for the development of a national seismic hazard model, which we have developed jointly with the GEM Foundation (Global Earthquake Model) during the last two years.”


On February 19th, during the session “De la amenaza sísmica al diseño sismo resistente” session (“From seismic hazard to seismic resistant design”), Julio García, Senior Hazard Scientist at GEM, in collaboration with the Colombian Geological Service, presented the new seismic hazard model for Colombia, also sharing methodological aspects, results and application of the model.


The afternoon sessions dealt with the use of national hazard models for structural design of infrastructure, new methodologies for risk assessment on buildings, and the use of active faults in seismic hazard analysis. During the last session, in addition to the participants, professionals from Geoestudios (Ecuador), Universidad del Norte (Colombia), Sociedad Colombiana de Geotecnia, Universidad de San Luís (Argentina) and Universidad Eafit (Colombia) were involved in a debate on the state of knowledge of seismic resistant design and the prospects for Colombia. On February 20th, the sessions were dedicated to seismic risk assessment.


Public and private, as well as national and international authorities, addressed many issues related to comprehensive risk management, among which were the elaboration of exposure models for Colombia, financial risk management for disaster risk reduction - presented by the Treasury Department, and safe and sustainable construction. In the afternoon of February 20th and on the 21st, GEM carried out a workshop called “Evaluación del riesgo sísmico usando OpenQuake” (“Seismic risk assessment using OpenQuake”), facilitated by the GEM risk team.


During the event, participants experienced first hand how to use OpenQuake, in particular the use of data to calculate seismic risk, the procedure to evaluate and describe inputs for the analysis of loss and damage scenarios, and in general, how to measure seismic risk. Workshops on the OpenQuake engine are particularly welcomed in countries like Colombia, where learning how to assess seismic risk is considered essential. The Universidad Nacional de Colombia mentions the GEM workshop in this article: GEM and SGC are committed to continue its strong collaboration to further advance seismic hazard and risk assessment in the country and the region.

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