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Dr. Arnaud Mignan

Senior Researcher

Dr.  Arnaud Mignan
Swiss Seismological Service (SED)
ETH Zürich
Dr. Arnaud Mignan
NO H 66
Sonneggstrasse 5
8092 Zürich

  +41 44 633 71 46

Dr. Arnaud Mignan joined the Swiss Seismological Service in 2010 as a Senior Researcher. He is also associated with the Institute of Geophysics of ETH Zurich and the Swiss Competence Center for Energy Research (SCCER) since 2014.

He earned his PhD in Geophysics at the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris in France in 2006. From 2006 to 2010, he worked at Risk Management Solutions (RMS), where he was Senior Catastrophe Risk Modeler in the Science & Technology, Model Development and Capital Market Support Teams.

As a full-time geoscientist, Arnaud Mignan has a keen interest in the behaviour and societal impact of extreme natural events, especially earthquakes. His motto, “History, Risk, Prediction”, leads him to explore georisks from these three complementary perspectives:

  • History: History of science, historical seismology, meta-analyses;
  • Risk: Multi-risk, induced seismicity risk, decision-making under uncertainty, risk communication;
  • Prediction: Earthquake physics, seismicity pattern recognition, non-criticality, geometry.

Since 2006, he has authored and co-authored more than 40 publications in peer-reviewed journals (incl. book chapters and invited reviews) and in magazines. On his spare time, he is both a collection curator (The Tricottet Collection) and a speculative fiction writer (author of The Wosnick Tunnel, 2016). Regarding his work on extreme risk, he has recently been interviewed in a short documentary by Euronews (magining the worst for Europe’s riskiest assets, 2016) and in the Tages-Anzeiger newspaper (“Katastrophaler Dominoeffekt”, 23 Jan 2017, p. 36).

List of Publications

[39] Seif, S., A. Mignan, J. D. Zechar, M. J. Werner and S. Wiemer (2017), Estimating ETAS: The effects of truncation, missing data, and model assumptions, J. Geophys. Res. Solid Earth, 121, doi: 10.1002/2016JB012809

[38] Panzera, F., A. Mignan and K. S. Vogfjord (2016), Spatiotemporal evolution of the completeness magnitude of the Icelandic earthquake catalogue from 1991 to 2013, J. Seismol., doi: 10.1007/s10950-016-9623-3

[37] Mignan, A., L. Danciu and D. Giardini (2016), Considering large earthquake clustering in seismic risk analysis, Nat. Hazards, doi: 10.1007/s11069-016-2549-9

[36] Mignan, A. (2016), Reply to “Comment on ‘Revisiting the 1894 Omori Aftershock Dataset with the Stretched Exponential Function’ by A. Mignan” by S. Hainzl and A. Christophersen, Seismol. Soc. Am., 87, 1134-1137, doi: 10.1785/0220160110

[35] Mignan, A. (2016), Static behaviour of induced seismicity, Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 23, 107-113, doi: 10.5194/npg-23-107-2016

[34] Mignan, A., A. Scolobig and A. Sauron (2016), Using reasoned imagination to learn about cascading hazards: a pilot study, Disaster Prevention and Management, 25, 329-344, doi: 10.1108/DPM-06-2015-0137

[33] Mignan, A. (2016), Metacollecting and use of “collection-objects” in prosopographical studies of meteorite collections, Meteorites, 4, 11-22, doi: 10.5277/met160102

[32] Mignan, A. (2016), Revisiting the 1894 Omori Aftershock Dataset with the Stretched Exponential Function, Seismol. Res. Lett., 87, doi: 10.1785/0220150230

[31] Mignan, A. and C.-C. Chen (2016), The Spatial Scale of Detected Seismicity, Pure Appl. Geophys., 173, 117-124, doi: 10.1007/s00024-015-1133-7

[30] Mignan, A. (2015), Modeling aftershocks as a stretched exponential relaxation, Geophys. Res. Lett., 42, 9726-9732, doi: 10.1002/2015GL066232

[29] Liu, Z., F. Nadim, A. Garcia-Aristizabal, A. Mignan, K. Fleming and B. Q. Luna (2015), A three-level framework for multi-risk assessment, Georisk, 9, 59-74, doi: 10.1080/17499518.2015.1041989

[28] Mignan, A., L. Danciu and D. Giardini (2015), Reassessment of the maximum fault rupture length of strike-slip earthquakes and inference on Mmax in the Anatolian Peninsula, Turkey, Seismol. Res. Lett., 86, 890-900, doi: 10.1785/0220140252

[27] Cara, M., Y. Cansi, A. Schlupp, P. Arroucau, N. Béthoux, E. Beucler, S. Bruno, M. Calvet, S. Chevrot, A. Deboissy, B. Delouis, M. Denieul, A. Deschamps, C. Doubre, J. Fréchet, S. Godey, O. Golle, M. Grunberg, J. Guilbert, M. Haugmard, L. Jenatton, S. Lambotte, D. Leobal, C. Maron, V. Mendel, S. Merrer, M. Macquet, A. Mignan, A. Mocquet, M. Nicolas, J. Perrot, B. Potin, O. Sanchez, J.-P. Santoire, O. Sèbe, M. Sylvander, F. Thouvenot, J. Van der Woerd, K. Van der Woerd (2015), SI-Hex: a new catalogue of instrumental seismicity for metropolitan France, Bull. Soc. géol. Fr., 186, 3-19, doi: 10.2113/gssgfbull.186.1.3

[26] Mignan, A., D. Landtwing, P. Kästli, B. Mena and S. Wiemer (2015), Induced seismicity risk analysis of the 2006 Basel, Switzerland, Enhanced Geothermal System project: Influence of uncertainties on risk mitigation, Geothermics, 53, 133-146, doi: 10.1016/j.geothermics.2014.05.007

[25] Mignan, A., S. Wiemer and D. Giardini (2014), The Quantification of Low Probability-High Consequences Events: Part I. A Generic Multi-Risk Approach, Natural Hazards, 73, 1999-2022, doi: 10.1007/s11069-014-1178-4

[24] Tormann, T., S. Wiemer and A. Mignan (2014), Systematic survey of high-resolution b-value imaging along Californian faults: inference on asperities, J. Geophys. Res., 119, 2029-2054, doi: 10.1002/2013JB010867

[23] Mignan, A. and G. Chouliaras (2014), 50 Years of Seismic Network Performance in Greece (1964-2013): Spatiotemporal Evolution of the Completeness Magnitude, Seismol. Res. Lett., 85, 657-667, doi: 10.1785/0220130209

[22] Mignan, A. (2014), The debate on the prognostic value of earthquake foreshocks: A meta-analysis, Sci. Rep., 4, 4099, doi: 10.1038/srep04099

[21] Komendantova, N., R. Mrzyglocki, A. Mignan, B. Khazai, F. Wenzel, A. Patt and K. Fleming (2014), Multi-hazard and multi-risk decision support tools as a part of participatory risk governance: Feedback from civil protection stakeholders, International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction, 8, 50-67, doi: 10.1016/j.ijdrr.2013.12.006

[20] Kraft, T., A. Mignan and D. Giardini (2013), Optimization of a large-scale microseismic monitoring network in northern Switzerland, Geophys. J. Int., 195, 474-490, doi: 10.1093/gji/ggt225

[19] Mignan, A., C. Jiang, J. D. Zechar, S. Wiemer, Z. Wu and Z. Huang (2013), Completeness of the Mainland China Earthquake Catalog and Implications for the Setup of the China Earthquake Forecast Testing Center, Bull. Seismol. Soc. Am., 103, 845-859, doi: 10.1785/0120120052

[18] Nanda, S. J., K. F. Tiampo, G. Panda, L. Mansinha, N. Cho and A. Mignan (2013), A tri-stage cluster identification model for accurate analysis of seismic catalogs, Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 20, 1-20, doi: 10.5194/npg-20-1-2013

[17] Mignan, A. (2012), Seismicity precursors to large earthquakes unified in a stress accumulation framework, Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L21308, doi: 10.1029/2012GL053946

[16] Mignan, A. (2012), Functional shape of the earthquake frequency-magnitude distribution and completeness magnitude, J. Geophys. Res., 117, B08302, doi: 10.1029/2012JB009347

[15] Mignan, A. and J. Woessner (2012), Estimating the magnitude of completeness for earthquake catalogs, Community Online Resource for Statistical Seismicity Analysis, doi: 10.5078/corssa-00180805. Available at

[14] Mignan, A., M. J. Werner, S. Wiemer, C.-C. Chen and Y.-M. Wu (2011), Bayesian Estimation of the Spatially Varying Completeness Magnitude of Earthquake Catalogs, Bull. Seismol. Soc. Am., 101, 1371-1385, doi: 10.1785/0120100223

[13] Mignan, A. (2011), Retrospective on the Accelerating Seismic Release (ASR) Hypothesis: Controversy and New Horizons (invited review paper), Tectonophys., 505, doi: 10.1016/j.tecto.2011.03.010

[12] Mignan, A., P. Grossi and R. Muir-Wood (2011), Risk Assessment of Tunguska-type Airbursts, Natural Hazards J., 56, 869-880, doi: 10.1007/s11069-010-9597-3

[11] Pinzuti, P., A. Mignan and G. C. P. King (2010), Morphology of normal faults in the Asal rift (Djibouti) and the magmatic intrusion model for early stages of continental rifting, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 299, 169-179, doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2010.08.032

[10] Tiampo, K. F., W. Klein, H.-C. Li, A. Mignan, Y. Toya, S. Z. L. Kohen-Kadosh, J. B. Rundle and C.-C. Chen (2010), Ergodicity and Earthquake Catalogs: Forecast Testing and Resulting Implications, Pure Appl. Geophys., 167, doi: 10.1007/s00024-010-0076-2

[9] Mignan, A. and K. Tiampo (2010), Testing the Pattern Informatics index on synthetic catalogues based on the Non-Critical PAST, Tectonophys., 483, doi: 10.1016/j.tecto.2009.10.023

[8] Mignan, A. and R. Di Giovambattista (2009), Reply to comments by J. Greenhouse et al. on “Relationship between accelerating seismicity and quiescence, two precursors to large earthquakes”, Geophys. Res. Lett., 36, L17304, doi: 10.1029/2009GL039871

[7] Muir-Wood, R. and A. Mignan (2009), A phenomenological reconstruction of the Mw9 Nov 1st 1755 earthquake source (book chapter), in: The 1755 Lisbon Earthquake: Revisited, Springer, Geotechnical, Geological and Earthquake Engineering, 7, doi: 10.1007/978-1-4020-8609-0_8, ISBN: 978-1-4020-8608-3

[6] Mignan, A. and R. Di Giovambattista (2008), Relationship between accelerating seismicity and quiescence, two precursors to large earthquakes, Geophys. Res. Lett., 35, L15306, doi: 10.1029/2008GL035024

[5] Mignan, A. (2008), Non-Critical Precursory Accelerating Seismicity Theory (NC PAST) and limits of the power-law fit methodology, Tectonophys., 452, doi: 10.1016/j.tecto.2008.02.010

[4] Mignan, A. (2008), The stress accumulation model: accelerating moment release and seismic hazard (book chapter), Adv. Geophys., 49, doi: 10.1016/S0065-2687(07)49002-1, ISBN: 978-0-12-374231-5

[3] Mignan, A., G. C. P. King and D. D. Bowman (2007), A mathematical formulation of accelerating moment release based on the stress accumulation model, J. Geophys. Res., 112, B07308, doi: 10.1029/2006JB004671

[2] Mignan, A., D. D. Bowman and G. King (2006), An observational test of the origin of accelerating moment release before large earthquakes, J. Geophys. Res., 111, B11304, doi: 10.1029/2006JB004374

[1] Mignan, A., G. C. P. King, D. Bowman, R. Lacassin and R. Dmowska (2006), Seismic activity in the Sumatra-Java region prior to the December 26, 2004 (Mw=9.0-9.3) and March 28, 2005 (Mw=8.7) earthquakes, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 244, doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2006.01.058