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SCEC Communication, Education and Outreach (CEO) Program
SCEC’s Communication, Education, and Outreach (CEO) program complements the SCEC Science Plan, fostering new research opportunities and ensuring the delivery of research and educational products to the general public, government agencies, the broader geoscience community, engineers, students, businesses, and the media. SCEC CEO addresses the third element of SCEC’s mission: Communicate understanding of earthquake phenomena to the world at large as useful knowledge for reducing earthquake risk and improving community resilience.
The theme of the CEO program during SCEC4 is Creating an Earthquake and Tsunami Resilient California. This includes: increased levels of preparedness and mitigation; expanded partnerships with research and practicing engineers, building officials, and others; routine training and drills; financial preparedness; and other ways to speed recovery and enhance future resilience. Each of these activities benefit from advances in earthquake science, by SCEC scientists and others (while tsunami research is not be a focus of SCEC, tsunami education and preparedness is an element of the CEO program and the ECA). The goal is to prepare individuals and organizations for making decisions (split-second through long-term) about how to respond appropriately to changing seismic and related hazards, including tsunami warnings and new technologies such as operational earthquake forecasts and earthquake early warning.
SCEC’s Communication, Education, and Outreach (CEO) program is organized to facilitate learning, teaching, and application of earthquake research. SCEC CEO is integrated within the overall SCEC enterprise, and engages in a number of partnership-based programs with overarching goals of improving knowledge of earthquake science and encouraging actions to prevent, mitigate, respond to, and recover from earthquake losses. CEO programs seek to improve the knowledge and competencies of the general public, “gatekeepers” of knowledge (such as teachers and museums), and technical partners such as engineers and policy makers.
SCEC CEO is organized into four interconnected focus areas:
- Implementation Interface connects SCEC scientists with partners in earthquake engineering research, and communicates with and trains practicing engineers and other professionals;
- Public Education and Preparedness thrust area educates people of all ages about earthquakes, and motivates them to become prepared;
- K-14 Earthquake Education Initiative seeks to improve earth science education and school earthquake safety;
- Experiential Learning and Career Advancement provides research opportunities, networking, and more to encourage and sustain careers in science and engineering.
SCEC CEO is led by SCEC’s associate director for CEO Mark Benthien. Sharon Sandow to the CEO team is Assistant Director for Strategic Partnerships. John Marquis is digital products manager and webmaster. Jason Ballmann is Communications Specialist. David Gill provides support to CEO as web developer. Several contractors for ECA and ShakeOut activities complement the SCEC CEO staff, along with a legion of USC student assistants and interns each year. The Earthquake Engineering Implementation Interface between SCEC and its research engineering partners is led by Jack Baker (Stanford) (who serves on the Planning Committee) and Jacobo Bielak (Carnegie Mellon). Several other SCEC scientists also are regularly involved in program development, intern mentorship, and other roles.