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The Collaboratory for the Study of Earthquake Predictability Perspective on Computational Earthquake Science

Jeremy D. Zechar, Danijel Schorlemmer, Maria Liukis, John Yu, Fabian Euchner, Philip J. Maechling, & Thomas H. Jordan

Published 2009, SCEC Contribution #1226

The Collaboratory for the Study of Earthquake Predictability (CSEP) aims to advance earthquake research by rigorous testing of earthquake forecast hypotheses. As in other disciplines, such hypothesis testing requires carefully designed experiments that meet certain requirements: they should be reproducible, fully transparent, and conducted within a controlled environment. CSEP has begun building infrastructure for conducting such rigorous earthquake forecasting experiments. Because past earthquake prediction experiments often have been controversial, CSEP testing centers--the secure, controlled computational environments within which experiments are conducted--have been designed to address particular issues related to transparency and exact reproducibility. Moreover, CSEP fosters collaboration among scientists developing earthquake forecast models, and the testing center concept allows multiple concurrent predictability experiments. In this paper, we share our perspective on computational earthquake science by presenting the design principles, organizational structure, and implementation details of CSEP testing centers. We describe ongoing forecast experiments in different testing regions and some of the implementation challenges encountered. We also describe the collaboration tools used for multi-national software development and regional presentation websites. The need for common data exchange formats is discussed, as are potential avenues of future research within CSEP testing centers.

Zechar, J. D., Schorlemmer, D., Liukis, M., Yu, J., Euchner, F., Maechling, P. J., & Jordan, T. H. (2009). The Collaboratory for the Study of Earthquake Predictability Perspective on Computational Earthquake Science. Concurrency and Computation: Practice and Experience, 22(12), 1836-1847. doi: 10.1002/cpe.1519.