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New blood: Meet GEM’s new team members from Costa Rica and United Kingdom


Sep 15, 2022



The GEM Secretariat is proud to welcome its newest members: Kirsty Bayliss and Andres Abarca.

Kirsty Bayliss is from Scotland, United Kingdom and specialises in statistical seismology. She joined the Hazard Team on September 7th as a seismic hazard scientist. She completed her PhD studying earthquake clustering at the University of Edinburgh and worked on development and testing for novel earthquake forecasting methods during her time as a postdoctoral researcher. Kirsty joined GEM because she is passionate about tackling earthquake problems and enthusiastic about open science. She will contribute her expertise to earthquake occurrence modelling.

Andres Abarca will join the team as Product Engineer working directly under the Secretary General. Andres is from Costa Rica and specialises in structural engineering and risk analysis, with a strong background in teaching and science communication. Andres has a PhD in regional risk assessment from the Understanding and Managing Extremes (UME) program of the University School of Advanced Studies in Pavia (IUSS Pavia). He has over 10-year experience as a structural engineer, university professor and researcher. He joined GEM because of his interest in the fields of risk assessment and communication, finding GEM to be a great opportunity to utilise his technical and communication aptitudes, in the service of increasing awareness to the risk of natural disasters. His role will focus on the evaluation and maintenance of GEM products, mainly serving as a link between the technical product development teams and current (as well as prospective) users. He will also serve as an ambassador for GEM’s goals and capabilities, representing the Foundation in multiple forums to promote GEM products, services and information.

Welcome to the GEM family Kirsty and Andres!

For a complete list of GEM Secretariat members, visit:

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