European Seismological Commission

Wednesday, August 20, 1997

Minutes of the ESC Business meeting in Thessaloniki 20 August 1997

Present: G Sobolev, P Suhadolc, A Shapira, A Walker, A Ansal, K Makropoulous, B Feignier, B Dost, I Cecic, D Slejko, A Deschamps, C Browitt, J Sileny, J Bonnin, R Hofstetter, Y Tyupkin, N Kondorskya, J Zschau, L Vinnik, E Hjortenberg, F Scherbaum etc.

1. G Sobolev welcomed delegates and introduced the brief agenda.

2. P Suhadolc reported that the proceedings of the Reykjavik Assembly had been issued and he congratulated R Stefansson on a very successful meeting.

3. With regard to the Athens Assembly, K Makropoulos reported that 200 additional copies of the proceedings were available for distribution at this Assembly.

4. R Hofstetter outlined the facilities which have been reserved for the next Assembly in Tel Aviv, 23-28 August 1998. Details are given in the first circular which has been made available at this meeting in Thessaloniki. The fees will be $250 with $130 for students and $160 for accompanying persons. The deadline for registration, abstracts and camera-ready papers is 15 April 1998. Information is available on the conference home page (

5. P Suhadolc emphasized the tight time table for programming which must be established by end October. Ideas for the sessions are welcomed from today and e-mails to P Suhadolc for symposia and workshops as soon as possible. Delegates present are asked to spread the news of this requirement. G Sobolev emphasized the special position of leaders of working groups in coming forward with ideas for the scientific programme.

6. There is an intention that an invited speaker be asked to open each session. This is the responsibility of the convenors who should note that no funding support is available from ESC. The ESC, however, will provide funding for Keynote speakers.

7. The training course for young scientists will, again, take place prior to the Tel Aviv assembly. A Shapira has offered to expose the students to site effects and standard hazard analysis during the 2-day course. Other proposals for the course are invited. Those accepted also obtain some support for attendance at the Assembly.

8. Ideas for the symposia themes were solicited with the following responses:

K Makropoulos for SC-A elected to send his ideas by e-mail.

L Vinnik for SC-B proposed:

Observatory practice (convened by P Bormann)

Deep structure of Europe, (convened by L Vinnik)

New computing techniques (convened by L Vinnik)

J Bonnin on behalf of J Young proposed: Final results of the seismogeographical regionalisation of Europe (convened by G Leidecker)

For SC-C the following was proposed:

J Sileny proposed on behalf of C Trifu: Mechanisms of earthquakes and induced events: theory, observations, methods and implications. (convened by C Trifu, R Hofstetter, G Bock, J Sileny)

A Deschamps proposed Paleoseismicity: recent advances (convened by M Megrahoui)

Others included: Archaeoseismology (convened by A Nur and R Funiciello); Earthquake Risk scenarios (convened by Faccioli); Site effects (A Ansal); Seismotectonics of the Middle East (convened by A Shapira)

Other ideas will be sent by sub-commission chairpersons to P Suhadolc together with further elaboration of the above.

9. P Suhadolc noted that it was agreed that the LOC organize the training course, facilities, support and theme.

10. There was a plea to organize sessions in such a way that similar topics did not run in parallel. Whilst sympathetic to this objective, it was recognized that, with 30-40 convenors and tight deadlines, it is not easy to achieve detailed coordination. P Suhadolc has issued guidelines to convenors which helps in this process. A Shapira said that the LOC would do what it can to rationalize the programme. J Zschau felt that putting the filter early, in the session themes, would help but C Browitt noted that with a mixture of themes between geographic area and disciplines, the perfect solution (to avoid similar parallel sessions) was impossible. In Tel Aviv, the hosting of all sessions in one hotel will help.

11. P Suhadolc noted that there were no offers of hosts for the year 2000 from titular members. He will investigate the idea of using a cruise ship.

12. D Slejko advocated an effort to attract delegates to the poster sessions as was achieved in Boulder through the availability of sponsored refreshments.

13 G Sobolev advised delegates of the practice of publishing papers in time for the Assembly. This requires the camera-ready copies to be with the LOC by 15 April. Reviewing will be strict; either accept or reject. There will be no time to go back to authors. Guidelines for submissions will come with the second circular.

14. In Reykjavik, posters were presented for more than 1 day unlike in Thessaloniki where half day was the limit. There was also a plea to separate business meeting times from session periods.

15. G Sobolev introduced the concept of an ESC virtual (or logical) Internet network to better structure sources of relevant information on the Web. The intention would be to introduce, also, some degree of quality control. The procedure could be for titular members to nominate national centres who might join the network. A Walker would approach them and progress the concept. Links with other organizations would, of course be followed in due course e.g. ASC and IASPEI.

16. N Kondorskya, noted that WDC-A (US), WDC-B (Russia) and WD-C (China) interact at present but there are many other critical data centres in existence. She strongly supported this ESC initiative.

17. B Feignier noted that ESC created the Working Group on data centres and data exchange in Reykjavik under SC-B and this could act as a focus. This could cover data and monitoring stations but the idea is much broader.

18. A Shapira suggested that EMSC would be the natural host for the server for the ESC activity. The ESC home page might move from its present location with BGS in Edinburgh ( A Walker) to EMSC.

20. A draft IASPEI resolution on the logical network was proposed and accepted by delegates. The IASPEI resolution proposed by ESC is as follows:


the benefit of the INTERNET for the dissemination of seismological information and,

the limitations of the INTERNET because of its potential for non-systematic, variable quality providers

IASPEI recommends that

for the European Mediterranean Region, a virtual network of such information providers be established and co-ordinated within the ESC, with a 'possible' link to IASPEI 'in the future'

20. J Zschau asked how we could proceed from this point to one of action. The way forward would be through requests to the titular members for the identification of a leading national institution to carry the branch of the tree for each country. EMSC and ORFEUS are existing centres which, for their areas, would be natural international nodes in the network.

21. E Hjortenberg suggested that a bibliography of microseisms should be on the home page. P Suhadolc asked E Hjortenberg to prepare this on the KMS home page and A Walker will provide a link to the ESC home page.

22. A Ansal suggested that each titular member should establish a home page and this could act as a national home page.

23. For the ESC home page, P Suhadolc requested delegates to send relevant information for dissemination to himself or A Walker.

24. In response to a question by K Makropoulos, P Suhadolc reminded the sub-commission chairpersons that they are required to send a report 6 months before the next ESC Assembly in Tel Aviv (deadline is 23 February 1998).

A B Walker

Assistant Secretary

23 August 1997


ESC/SSA Travel Grant to attend the 2024 SSA Annual Meeting in Anchorage, Alaska

Apply for the ESC/SSA travel grant by the deadline of 30 November 2023! Seismologists from any member state of the ESC are eligble to apply. We encourage in particular students and early-career researchers to consider applying. More information can be found here.

From the ESC Working Groups:

Visit the website of the WG Preservation, valorisation and analysis of seismological legacy data

Visit the website of the WG Harmonizing Internet Macroseismology in Europe 

Contribute to the Portal of the ESC WG on Communication here

Get to know the website of the FAULT2SHA Working Group and find out forthcoming activities! The WG promotes a new initiative, open to all researchers interested in contributing to discussions on topics that could improve the assessment of seismic hazard.


Find out about the Young Seismologist Training Course here.


What were the past General Assemblies of the ESC like? Find out! Interesting documentation has been made easily accessible.

This list summarizes the files.


Sadly we announce the loss of esteemed and beloved colleagues and friends:

Older obituaries can be found here.