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The Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC) is an institutionally based organization governed by a Board of Directors. It recognizes both core institutions, which make a major, sustained commitment to SCEC objectives, and a larger number of participating institutions, which are self-nominated through the involvement of individual scientists or groups in SCEC activities and confirmed by the Board. Membership continues to evolve because SCEC is an open consortium, available to individuals and institutions seeking to collaborate on earthquake science in Southern California. Each core institution appoints one member to the Board. The Board elects two nominees from the participating institutions to serve two-year terms on the Board as members-at-large.
The Board of Directors is the primary decision-making body of SCEC; it meets three times per year to approve the annual science plan, management plan, and budget, and deal with major business items. The Center Director acts as Chair of the Board. The liaison members from the U.S. Geological Survey are non-voting members.
Standing Disciplinary Committees coordinate the principal data-gathering activities and the disciplinary infrastructure, as well as communal field equipment, experiments, and computational resources. Interdisciplinary research is organized by Focus Groups that are responsible for the development, verification, release, maintenance, and improvement of the SCEC Community Models.
The leaders of the Disciplinary Committees and Interdisciplinary Focus Groups serve on the Planning Committee (PC) for three-year terms. The PC develops the annual Science Collaboration Plan, coordinates activities relevant to SCEC science priorities, and is responsible for generating annual reports for the Center. Leaders of SCEC Special Projects (i.e. projects with funding outside the core science program) also serve on the Planning Committee. They ensure the activities of the special projects are built into the annual science plans. SCEC sponsors Technical Activity Groups (TAGs), which self-organize to develop and test critical methodologies for solving specific problems.
The Center Director is the Chief Executive Officer and bears ultimate responsibility for the Center’s programs and budget. The Director acts as PI on all proposals submitted by the Center, retaining final authority to make and implement decisions on Center grants and contracts, and ensuring that funds are properly allocated for various Center activities The Deputy Director chairs the Planning Committee and oversees the development of the annual Science Collaboration Plan. The Associate Director for Administration assists the Center Director in overseeing daily operations, including managing the budget as approved by the Board, filing reports as required by the Board and funding agencies, and keeping the Board, funding agencies, and Center participants current on all Center activities. The Communication, Education, and Outreach (CEO) Program fosters new research opportunities and ensures the delivery of research and educational products to the world at large as useful knowledge for reducing earthquake risk and improving community resilience. The overall framework for data-integration and modeling effort, including the software standards for data structures and model interfaces, is responsibility of the Associate Director for Information Technology.
An elected external Advisory Council (AC) serves as an experienced advisory body to the Center. The Council reports to the Center through its Chair. The AC comprises a diverse membership representing all aspects of Center activities, including basic and applied earthquake research and related technical disciplines (e.g., earthquake engineering, risk management, and information technology), formal and informal education, and public outreach. Members of the AC are drawn from academia, government, and the private sector; they are elected by the Board for three-year terms and may be re-elected. The Council meets annually to review Center programs and plans and prepares a report for the Center. The AC Chair is apprised on all major actions of the Center. Council members are informed of Center activities and invited to participate in all appropriate Center functions. Council reports are made available to NSF, the USGS, and other funding agencies.
The Communication, Education, and Outreach Planning Committee (CEO PC) comprises of stakeholders representing CEO program focus areas (public education and preparedness; K-14 education initiative; experiential learning and career advancement; and the implementation interface). The CEO PC provides guidance for CEO programs, reviews reports and evaluations, and identifies synergies with other parts of SCEC and external organizations.