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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.

News of the Institute

Save the Date: 2015 EERI Annual Meeting

Boston Harbor at sunsetThe 2015 EERI Annual Meeting will be in BostonMark your calendars and be sure to attend the next EERI Annual Meeting. It will take place March 31 through April 3, 2015 in historic Boston, Massachusetts. The New England Regional Chapter of EERI is serving as the Local Organizing Committee. Program details will be released soon.

Nigel Priestley to be Awarded Housner Medal

Nigel Priestley is the 2015 George W. Housner Medalist. Priestley specializes in seismic design as a structural engineer with Priestley Structural Engineering. He is also a Professor Emeritus at University of California at San Diego and is Emeritus Co-Director for the European School for Advanced Studies in Reduction of Seismic Risk (Rose School) in Pavia, Italy. The Housner Medal is awarded to recognize Institute members and others who have made extraordinary and lasting contributions to public earthquake safety through the development and application of earthquake hazard reduction practices and policies. 

NigelPriestly reducedPriestley's research has profoundly influenced seismic bridge design around the world. In 1989, 1994, and 1995 three major earthquakes hit California and Japan, with dramatic effects on transportation infrastructure, specifically bridges. Priestley's 1996 book Seismic design and retrofit of bridges, co-authored with Frieder Seible and G. Michele Calvi (M. EERI, 1990), incorporated the lessons learned to promote improvements to bridge design, construction, assessment and strengthening. The book was translated into Japanese and Chinese and is still an internationally recognized reference on the subject. 

In addition to the contributions to bridge engineering, Priestley has led the Precast Seismic Structural System (PRESSS) effort on precast structures and made significant contributions to the masonry field. His 2007 book, Displacement Based Seismic Design of Structures, co-authored with G. Michele Calvi and Mervyn Kowalsky (M. EERI, 1994), was regarded as a seminal contribution to the field of earthquake engineering.

Priestley's work has been recognized through numerous awards, and he was recently elected Officer of the Order of Merit in New Zealand for "services to structural engineering" in New Zealand. He has a legacy of many mentees, including nearly 30 PhD students. He has also served as a mentor to many younger colleagues at several locations around the world. Former mentees from all three of these institutions now hold teaching, research, and professional positions around the world.

The next issue of The Pulse will feature the 2015 EERI Distinguished Lecturer.

NEES Webinars: Seismic Performance of Architectural Precast Facade Systems

Two upcoming NEES/EERI Research-to-Practice webinars will be featuring NEES Projects and their affiliated studies on architectural precast façade systems. The first webinar focuses on Research and Testing Programs, and the second webinar focuses on Design Implications and Lessons Learned

There is no cost to attend the webinars. To register go to PDHs will be available from EERI after the webinar for $30.

Seismic Performance of Architectural Precast Facade Systems
A: Research and Testing Programs:  
Friday, December 5, 2014, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm PST
B: Design Implications and Lessons Learned:  Friday, December 12, 2014, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm PST

Kurt McMullin (M. EERI, 1992), Professor, San Jose State University
Tara Hutchinson (M. EERI, 1995), Professor, University of California at San Diego
Mark Hildebrand, President, Willis Precast Co. Inc.
Glen Underwood, Chief Structural Engineer, Clark-Pacific Precast
Elide Pantoli (M. EERI, 2012), Doctoral Candidate, University of California at San Diego

3rd International Conference on Urban Disaster Reduction: Papers and Presentations Now Online

Over 140 people attended the 3rd International Conference on Urban Disaster Reduction (3ICUDR) in Boulder, Colorado at the end of September. The conference opened with a welcoming reception featuring summary presentations of three pre-conference field study workshops. Conference programming began with a keynote presentation from Haruo Hayashi (M. EERI 1997) on the Behavioral Disaster Management Paradigm. The conference program continued with seven plenary presentations, over 60 oral presentations, and more than 30 poster presentations. After the Closing Ceremony on October 1, nearly 50 conference attendees participated in a field trip to Lyons, Colorado where devastating floods impacted the city in 2013.

3ICUDR Kathleen Tierney Welcome modified 350pxKathleen Tierney, Natural Hazards Center, gives opening remarks at the 3ICUDR welcome receptionThe mission of the conference was to develop, integrate and promote new knowledge and best practices in sustainable disaster recovery, with a particular emphasis on urban environments. The conference built on an established practice of international collaboration and knowledge-sharing after disaster events in Japan, the US, and Taiwan. In this third conference, a delegation from New Zealand, and individuals from three other countries, joined the collaboration.

All papers and presentations from the conference are now available online on the conference website at

The 3ICUDR was organized by EERI and hosted by the Natural Hazards Center at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Funding for the conference came from the Center for Global Partnership of the Japan Foundation and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

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In Memorium

Remembering Ben L. Schmid

Longtime EERI member Ben Schmid (M. EERI, 1975) was a respected structural engineer for 62 years and was still active at the time of his passing on August 23, 2014. Ben earned his B.S. and M.S. Degrees in Civil and Structural Engineering from Stanford University and was a former president of the Structural Engineers Association of Southern California. As reported in the Los Angeles Times and Orange County Register, Ben was a FEMA damage advisor for earthquakes in the U.S. beginning in 1951. The 1994 Northridge earthquake particularly affected him, and Ben dedicated his time to improving single and multi-family residential construction such that they would remain habitable following a significant earthquake. At 80 years old, he had five patents issued.

Ben was an active volunteer and a kind man and will be remembered as an inspiration to those who were fortunate to know him.

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Earthquake Spectra Preprints

Logo for Earthquake SpectraIn October, five preprint manuscripts were posted on the Earthquake Spectra website prior to their formal publication. 

  • Soil liquefaction during the May 20, 2012 M5.9 Emilia earthquake, Northern Italy: field reconnaissance and post-event assessment by Carlo G. Lai, Francesca Bozzoni, Maria-Daphne Mangriotis, and Mario Martinelli

  • Evaluation of in-ground plastic-hinge length and depth for piles in marine oil terminals by Rakesh K. Goel (M. EERI, 1994)

  • Axial capacity evaluation of typical suspended ceiling joints by Siavash Soroushian (M. EERI, 2011), Manos Maragakis (M. EERI, 1984), and Craig Jenkins

  • Rational design spectra for structural reliability assessment using the response spectrum method by Christophe Loth (M. EERI, 2014) and Jack W. Baker (M. EERI, 2004)

  • Experimental dataset of mining-induced seismicity for studies of full-scale topographic effects by Clinton M. Wood  (M. EERI, 2012) and Brady R. Cox (M. EERI, 2004)

 To read the preprint manuscripts or browse all articles posted since August 2013, visit Earthquake Spectra preprints.

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2015 Membership Renewal


It's time to renew your EERI membership for 2015. 

Whether you've read an Earthquake Spectra article; learned about upcoming events in The Pulse of Earthquake Engineering e-newsletter; searched for and found colleagues in our new online Membership Directory; browsed our online Earthquake Photo Galleries; participated in an EERI project; attended an EERI meeting, workshop, seminar; or the 10th U.S. National Conference on Earthquake Engineering (10NCEE) this year, we hope you continue to find value in your EERI membership.

Every year since 1948, EERI has strived to fulfill its mission — to gather and disseminate information about earthquake risk reduction and to advocate for realistic measures to reduce the harmful effects of earthquakes. In the face of natural disasters, multidisciplinary collaborations are critical to our earthquake risk reduction mission — and so is your continued membership and support.

On October 23, 2014, all EERI members (except student and honorary members) were sent via email a renewal notice for 2015. Following the renewal link in your email will direct you to a personal renewal page showing contact information with options for selecting chapter membership and making a voluntary contribution to the EERI Endowment Fund. 

If you renew by December 31, 2014 your name will be entered to win a $100 gift certificate, so renew today!

Annual Student Paper Competition

Deadline extended to November 15, 2014!

EERI is pleased to announce its Annual Student Paper Competition. The purpose of the competition is to promote active involvement of students in earthquake engineering and the earthquake hazards research community. The EERI Student Paper Competition is open to graduate and undergraduate applicants. 

Cover sheet of student paper competitionApplicants must be enrolled at an accredited U.S. college or university and must be U.S. residents. Contest rules for graduate and undergraduate paper categories are available on the competition flyer. Guidelines for preparing the manuscript are accessible on the EERI website. All papers must be e-mailed by November 15, 2014, to Juliane Lane at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Up to four student authors will be invited to the 2015 EERI Annual Meeting in Boston, March 31 – April 3, 2015, and will receive travel support for this purpose. Their papers may also be considered for publication in Earthquake Spectra. The top paper in the graduate category may be presented at the 2015 EERI Annual Meeting.

Moehle publishes book: Seismic Design of Reinforced Concrete Buildings

Seismic Design of Reinforced Concrete Buildings:  EERI member Jack Moehle (M. EERI, 1981), TY and Margaret Lin Professor of Engineering, UC Berkeley, has published a book on seismic design of reinforced concrete buildings (McGraw-Hill, 760 pp.). The book provides a focused and in-depth treatment of the mechanics of reinforced concrete and the design requirements for buildings located in highly seismic regions. 

Cover image of Seismic Design of Reinforced Concrete BuildingsJack Moehle 135x180pxThe book targets both university students and practicing engineers. For students, the book presents a logical progression of content that builds knowledge of reinforced concrete construction, including design methods, behavior of materials and members, and the assembly of structural members into complete buildings capable of resisting strong earthquake shaking. For practicing structural engineers, this book can build knowledge and serve as a reference resource to help solve challenging design problems. The book is fully compatible with ASCE 7-10 and ACI 318-14, although it also draws extensively from the literature and good practices worldwide.

The book is available to order on the ACI website and through other booksellers.

Shah Family Innovation Prize: Call for Nominations

Do you know a young academic or professional making a difference in reducing global earthquake risk? Members are encouraged to nominate candidates for the Shah Family Innovation Prize from government, private firms, academia, and the international community. The Shah Family Innovation Prize was created with a substantial gift to the EERI Endowment Fund by the Haresh C. Shah family of Stanford, California. The intent of the prize is to stimulate further creativity and leadership in the earthquake risk mitigation community and EERI. Please submit your nominations for the Shah Family Innovation Prize. Nominations are due by November 15, 2014. Visit the Shah Prize webpage for more information or submit your nomination directly at

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Job Opportunities

EERI: Membership and Communications Manager

EERI seeks a creative and experienced, technology aware, membership and communications professional to become its Membership and Communications Manager. This person will be a primary liaison with the Institute's 2800 members with responsibility for membership retention and new member solicitation campaigns. The person will also be responsible for planning, developing, and implementing an integrated communications and public relations plan to increase the overall branding, visibility and reach of the Institute. More information is available on the EERI Careers page.

UC Berkeley: Faculty Position in Resilient Systems

The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, invites applications for a Professor position in the broad area of Resilient Systems. Candidates at all ranks will be considered (Assistant Professors, Associate Professors or Full Professors). Infrastructure systems and projects face a multitude of hazards that must be assessed, communicated, and managed appropriately. We are interested in candidates who develop high-performance computer simulation and advanced visualization tools to conduct risk assessments at the citywide scale, considering multiple hazards such as earthquakes, tsunamis, flooding, and fires. We are also interested in candidates who develop and deploy sensor networks for rapid condition assessment of critical structures, in order to operate optimally and to ensure system safety. Candidates who study risk management, engineering economics, and infrastructure project finance are also encouraged to apply. More information can be found at

UC Berkeley: Faculty Position in Engineering for Sustainability

The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, invites applications for a tenure-track Assistant Professor position in the broad area of Engineering for Sustainability. Sustainable engineering employs an understanding of environmental, economic and social conditions to maintain and improve the quality of life while safeguarding the world's resources for future generations. To address this need, we seek candidates who develop new designs, analysis methods and tools, and technologies to provide sustainable solutions to growing needs for buildings, energy, mobility, and water. Application areas may include, but are not limited to: systems of sensors and actuators to enhance sustainability; design and multi-scale analysis of energy-efficient materials and buildings; and development of sustainable water and wastewater treatment technologies. More information is at

USGS: Research Position in Earthquake Seismology

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Geologic Hazards Science Center (GHSC) in Golden, Colorado, has opened a research position in Earthquake Seismology. The primary focus of the position is to plan, originate, and conduct research that characterizes shaking-related hazards primarily for the benefit of USGS real-time earthquake information systems. This focus may include studies of basin and other propagation and site effects, spatial variability, complexity, and uncertainty that may relate to the real time hazard and loss assessment.

Applications (resume and responses to application questions) for this vacancy must be received online via USAJOBS before midnight Eastern Time on Friday, November 14, 2014. A full description of the job opening, qualifications and instructions on how to apply can be found at: Contact Melissa Barnhart with questions about the application process (Phone: 916-278-9399; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Ohio State University: Assistant Professor in Infrastructure

The Ohio State University Department of Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering invites applications for a tenure‐track position at the rank of Assistant Professor in Infrastructure. Candidates must demonstrate how their research relates to the sustainability of large‐scale built systems with an emphasis on the long-term aging of such systems through usage or environmentally induced degradation, or the interactions of such systems with large‐scale hazards (natural or otherwise). More information can be found at Review of applications will begin on December 1, 2014 and continue until the position is filled.

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News of the Profession

Loma Prieta Earthquake: 25th Anniversary

October 17, 2014 was the 25th anniversary of the Mw 6.9 Loma Prieta earthquake in Northern California. A number of events commemorated this memorable and damaging earthquake. The Great ShakeOut was held the day prior to the anniversary; 10.4 million Californians practiced their response to strong shaking with Drop, Cover, and Hold On.

Marina building collapseSan Francisco building collapse in 1989EERI participated in developing the program for the Loma Prieta 25 Symposium: Still On Shaky Ground (LP25), held on October 16, 2014. The symposium brought together thought leaders, community advocates, elected officials, technical specialists, and others from the Santa Cruz and San Francisco Bay areas. Focused on public policies relating to earthquakes and other hazards, it launched a three-year policy program to increase community resilience.

EERI members can browse galleries of photographs of the Loma Prieta and other significant earthquakes by logging in to the Member Resources Area of the EERI website.

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Member Spotlight

Welcome New EERI Members

EERI would like to welcome the new members who have recently joined the Institute.  If you wish to connect with your fellow members, you can locate their contact information in the EERI online membership directory, which requires logging in to the Member Resources Area of the EERI website.

Student Members

Lim Sam Adiputra, Stanford University, Structural
Evangelia (Eva) Agapaki, UCLA, Geotechnical
Dilara Akdoganbulut, Cankaya University, Civil
Wiam Al Aawar, University of Texas - Austin, Civil
Kheder Alrazaa, California State University Los Angeles, Civil
Araya Ampaiporn, Antalya International University, Civil
Damian Andreani, SUNY Buffalo
Doruk Araplili, Karadeniz Teknik Universitesi, Civil
Jason Armes, UC Berkeley, Structural
Stalin Armijos, University of Texas - Austin, Structural
Hasan Arslan, Karadeniz Teknik Universitesi, Civil
Brian Austin, UC Berkeley, Structural
Daniel Baissa, SUNY Buffalo
Ricardo Basora-Rovira, Purdue University, Structural
Aaron Behnke, SUNY Buffalo, Civil
Manotapa Bhaumik, Georgia Institute of Technology, Structural
Ghazi Binarandi, Purdue University, Structural
Daniel Boyett, San Jose State University, Civil
Jason Brenner, SUNY Buffalo, Civil
Brooks Brown, University of Connecticut, Civil
Justyna Bujno, Cornell University, Civil
Hakan Cakmak, Karadeniz Teknik Universitesi, Civil
Ulku Can, Karadeniz Teknik Universitesi, Civil
Zeyang Cao, Rice University, Structural
Leslynette Carrucini, University of Puerto Rico, Civil
Francisca Castillo, California State University Long Beach, Civil
Giovanni Castillo, Georgia Institute of Technology, Structural
Robert Chase, University of Colorado, Structural
Di Chen, Purdue University, Structural
Jia Chen, Georgia Institute of Technology, Structural
Li-Hui Cheng, Purdue University, Civil
Yiu-Chun Cheung, San Jose State University, Civil
Brendan Cioto, UC Berkeley, Geotechnical
Yildiz Dak, So Illinois University, Civil
Leticia De Carvalho, Antalya International University, Civil
Jocelyn Diaz, California State University Long Beach, Civil
Linling Dong, Georgia Institute of Technology, Structural
Brennan Dubuc, SUNY Buffalo, Structural
Arvin Ebrahimkhanlou, SUNY Buffalo, Health Science
Edward Eskew, University of Connecticut, Structural
Eaman Fatemi, Stanford University, Structural
Camilla Favaretti, University of California Irvine, Geotechnical
Max Ferguson, Stanford University, Structural
Aliz Fischer, Stanford University, Structural
Nathan Fleming, University of Michigan, Civil
Timothy Frank, Stanford University, Structural
Weiphang Gan, Purdue University, Structural
Gantulga Gankhuyag, Antalya International University, Civil
Alberto Gaona, California State University Fullerton, Structural
Sofia Gavridou, UCLA, Structural
Armando Gomez-Farias, Stanford University, Structural
Fan Gong, UC Berkeley, Structural
Kundan Goswami, SUNY Buffalo, Mechanical
Christopher Graham, University of California San Diego, Structural
William Greenwood, University of Michigan, Geotechnical
Ian Griffey, Brigham Young University, Civil
Justin Guo, Cornell University, Civil
Tyler Hainey, California State University Fullerton, Geotechnical
Ana Haro, North Carolina State University, Structural
Luis Hasbun, Georgia Institute of Technology, Structural
Ali Helwa, University of Texas - Austin, Geotechnical
Pablo Heresi, Stanford University, Structural
Guher Hergul, Cankaya University, Civil
Laura Hernandez, SUNY Buffalo, Structural
Kristen Hess, University of Colorado, Structural
Michael Honeycutt, San Francisco State University, Civil
Yu Hong, Georgia Institute of Technology, Civil
Farid Hosseinpour, University of Memphis, Structural
Ge Huang, Georgia Institute of Technology, Structural
Hanyu Huang, Georgia Institute of Technology, Structural
Jonathan Ingram, University of NE - Lincoln (Omaha)

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Earthquake Engineering Research Institute
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