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Dear Colleagues

by Emily Brodsky (University of California, Santa Cruz), SZ4D Executive Committee

Mar 22, 2024

Updates from the Chair of the SZ4D Executive Committee

Spring is in the air and the SZ4D Center proposal is submitted! As the project summary says “The Subduction Zones in 4-Dimensions (SZ4D) Center is a coordinated community effort to develop a system-level understanding of interconnected subduction zone geohazards at a range of temporal and spatial scales, with the ultimate goal of delivering physically-founded geohazard forecasts, where possible, and defining their limits, where necessary. Instrumental observations alone do not lead to scientific understanding. Reaching a process-based understanding of geohazards requires curation of existing data, geological observations, laboratory experiments, modeling, workforce development, and community engagement. These activities must be coordinated to achieve success.  The proposed SZ4D Center meets these needs by providing the intellectual framework and community-run organization that will enable significant advancements in the science of geohazards and geohazards forecasting.”

This proposal to NSF is the product of years of effort and, if funded, would support the collaborative science that is essential to the SZ4D Initiative. The MultiArray is planned as a separate proposal next year. Combining these efforts with the international collaboration (SZNet) and the associated activities, I think we stand a good chance of transforming the field. That transformation is a result of the hard work of all of you. Approximately 100 individuals touched the proposal in one form or other. Some wrote, some reviewed, some re-wrote, some contributed ideas, and some found the right partners. All of it mattered and has resulted in a tightly interwoven, multihazard, multidisciplinary plan to use interconnected hazards as a route into clarifying what can (and cannot) be forecast. So, thank you and well done. Regardless of the outcome of the review process, the SZ4D plan is clearer than ever before. 

In working through these plans, we are maintaining connections with our government partners. From Congressional visits, to long-term collaborations at agencies like the USGS and  SERNAGEOMIN, SZ4D is working to be responsive to the rapidly changing landscape of geohazard research.

Many thanks to all of you for your efforts. I’m looking forward to seeing many of you at the next SZ4D virtual all-hands committee meeting in May, when we will focus on sharing and amplifying opportunities for collaborative proposals.

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