1992 - 1998

Appendix I: Index, GSHAP Summary Volume, Annali di Geofisica, 1999 | Appendix II: List of GSHAP Contacts | Appendix III: Acronyms

The Global Seismic Hazard Assessment Program (GSHAP) was launched in 1992 by the International Lithosphere Program (ILP) with the support of the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU), and endorsed as a demonstration program in the framework of the United Nations International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (UN/IDNDR).

In order to mitigate the risk associated to the recurrence of earthquakes, the GSHAP promotes a regionally coordinated, homogeneous approach to seismic hazard evaluation; the ultimate benefits are improved national and regional assessments of seismic hazards, to be used by national decision makers and engineers for land use planning and improved building design and construction.

The GSHAP was implemented in the 1992-1998 period and is coming to conclusion. All regional activities are now completed, and the publication of all regional results and of the GSHAP map of global seismic hazard is under way.

Regional reports, GSHAP yearly reports, summaries and maps of seismicity, source zones and seismic hazard are on the GSHAP homepage on This report summarizes the development, the regional activities and the achievements of the GSHAP.


8.91 following the ICSU request to provide scientific input for IDNDR demonstration activities, ILP initiates the planning and preparation for the GSHAP
3.92 the UN/IDNDR Scientific and Technical Committee endorses the GSHAP as a Decade demonstration project
6.92 the GSHAP is launched with a Technical Planning Meeting in Rome, to focus the consensus of the scientific community on the development of a multi-national and multi-disciplinary approach to seismic hazard assessment, to define schedule and structure of the program
92-93 the first year is devoted to the definition and implementation of the regional and management structure, the establishment of the program in the international scientific and engineering communities, the coordination with other UN/IDNDR activities, the establishment of a funding strategy
7.93 the GSHAP Volume is published (Annali di Geofisica, vol. 36, 3-4), containing all program documents, a revision of the existing status-quo in global seismic hazard and the technical guidelines for the GSHAP implementation
93-95 The first implementation phase is devoted to implement the key strategic elements of the program: the operation of regional centres in all continents and the activation of multinational test areas for seismic hazard assessment in regions of high seismotectonic significance
8.95 program evaluation (Boulder, IUGG Assembly)
95-97 the second implementation phase extends the GSHAP coverage to more test areas and regions covering the most of the world
8.97 regional results are presented and evaluated in a special meeting (Thessalonicki, IASPEI Assembly); plans for the final phase of GSHAP are drawn
97-98 the final phase focuses on the completion of regional hazard assessment, on the compilation of all regional databases and results, on the compilation of the GSHAP map of global seismic hazard, on the dissemination of GSHAP products and materials (special volumes, maps, CD-ROM, web)
6.99 publication of the GSHAP Summary volume
7.99 the GSHAP map of global seismic hazard is presented at the IDNDR Closing Conference in Geneva


The GSHAP has been designed as a Decade demonstration project, adopting and implementing the following design principles:
  1. Hazard assessment is the primary input for the implementation of risk mitigation strategies
  2. Scientific research is a key to engineering applications
  3. Maintain high scientific standards
  4. Ensure consensus and enlarge participation at all levels
  5. Enforce a multi-disciplinary approach to seismic hazard assessment
  6. Work across boundaries
  7. Enhance the role of developing countries
  8. Ensure technology transfer
  9. Focus on key geographical and border areas
  10. Ensure the implementation of regional and global results in national policies


To achieve a global dimension, the GSHAP strategy established in Roma in 1992 has been to establish a mosaic of regions under the coordination of chosen of regional centers. The goal in the first implementation phase (1993-95) was to compute the seismic hazard in selected test areas, and to then expand in the second phase (1995-97) to cover whole continents and finally the globe. This strategy has been maintained in many of the originally established ten regions, while elsewhere the activities focussed directly on key test-areas under the coordination of large working groups. Some areas, specifically the Mediterranean and the Middle East, have been covered by a mosaic of overlapping projects, while elsewhere (i.e. parts of Africa and of the Western Pacific rim) the hazard mapping was obtained only at the end of the program by using published materials.

In specific cases GSHAP allied with existing hazard projects with similar purpose and methodologies, to avoid duplications and strengthen the across-boundary cooperation (i.e. in the Balcans and Near-East).

Following the Rome 1992 guidelines, the general rule has been to establish for each region or test area a working group of national experts covering the different fields required for seismic hazard assessment, to produce common regional catalogues and databases and to assess regional hazard.

GSHAP was globally coordinated in the 1992-97 period by ING, Roma, in the final 1997-99 period by ETH, Zurich.

The following list and the map illustrate the global coverage of GSHAP, separating GSHAP Regions (outlined in black in Figure), Test Areas (blue) and Cooperating Projects (green).


GSHAP Regions

1. Central-North America
2. South America (CERESIS)
3. Central-Northern Europe
6. Middle East (Iran)
7. Northern Eurasia
8. Eastern Asia
10. South-West Pacific

GSHAP Test Areas

Northern Andes (PILOTO)
Caucasus (CAUCAS)
Adriatic Sea (ADRIA)
East African Rift
India-China-Tibet-Myanmar-Bangla Dash

Cooperating Projects

Mexico-C. America-Caribbean-S. America (PAIGH-IDRC)
Circum Pannonian Basin (EU-QSEZ-CIRPAN)
Eastern Mediterranean (RELEMR, USGS/UNESCO)
Mediterranean (SESAME, IGCP 382)

In the following we summarize the GSHAP regional activities in 1992-98. Maps, catalogues, databases and reports are found on


A network of national and regional programs in seismic hazard assessment covers the whole region: the new provisional US map has been released in 1996 and Canada and Mexico have also recently revised their national hazard maps; PAIGH completes in 1995-96 its four-part seismic hazard assessment of Central-South America, producing maps for Mexico, Central America South of Mexico, the Caribbeans and South America; cooperative and bilateral programs are active in different areas of Central America under support of agencies from North America and Europe (Norway, European Union). In this framework the role of GSHAP has been to promote inter-program coordination at continental scale and to connect activities in Central-Northern America with other regions. A multinational effort led by USGS as Regional Centre has produced in 1997 a unified seismic hazard map of North-America under GSHAP, joining the existing national and regional source zonings. Additional products under the GSHAP banner include the compilation of a new global instrumental earthquake catalogue, starting from the scanning and digital processing of the ISS and BCIS Bulletins, and the editing of a new compilation of strong ground motion attenuation laws.


The whole South American continent has been selected as test area under the CERESIS Regional Centre. CERESIS completed in 1995-96 the new seismic hazard assessment for the whole continent, as part of the four-part seismic hazard mapping of Central and Southern America led by PAIGH/IDRC; the new map is based on an updated earthquake catalogue extending the 1981 SISRA catalogue to 1991 and on a new regional seismic source zonation. GSHAP initiatives held in South America include the participation in the UNESCO-GFZ "International Training Course on Seismology and Seismic Hazard Assessment" in Costarica (10/95).


The GSHAP implementation in Central-Northern Europe was coordinated by the GFZ Regional Centre in Potsdam. Following a planning meeting held in Potsdam (7/93) and a workshop in De Bilt (12/94), the regional seismic catalogue was completed for NW Europe in 1996 with the addition of the database for Fennoscandia and of the SIRENE catalogue for France, for the first time released for an international program. The final SHA map was presented in 1997, including the whole territory north of 46°N. The seismic hazard for France has now been completed also south of 46°N. A unified hazard assessment for the German speaking countries (Germany-Austria-Switzerland) was produced in 1996 by national teams including seismologists and engineers, under the coordination of GFZ at Potsdam, as preparatory work for the implementation of the new european seismic building construction code (EC8). DACH has also been promoted as GSHAP test area. In addition, an independent zonation is now available for Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia, coordinated by Prague University.


The Regional Centre at IIEES, Tehran, has coordinated activities in the area with a direct involvement in the CAUCAS test area and with workshops organized in Tehran (1/93), Ashgabad (10/94) and Tehran (5/95). These activities will continue in the future, and the SEE-3 conference, scheduled in Tehran for May 1999, will include a session on regional seismic hazard.


The GSHAP Regional Centre in Moscow, JIPE, is coordinating the seismic hazard mapping for the whole territory of the former USSR. A five-year program, initiated before the FSU break-up and interrupted during the period of more intense political turmoil, has been restarted, leading to the compilation of the seismic catalogue and the SHA, using for the first time a probabilistic approach. Technical workshops are held routinely in Moscow. The area has been subdivided in five blocks, and the regional hazard maps in MSK were completed in 1998.


Following in the original framework planned in Rome, 1992, the hazard mapping for the whole Eastern Asia originates from the expansion of the test area initially established in the border region of China-India-Nepal-Myanmar-Bangla Dash. The regional mapping has been coordinated by the SSB Regional Centre in Beijing, in coordination with the other Regional Centres (JIPE, Moscow, and AGSO, Canberra) and with the direct assistance of the USGS. The hazard incorporated the results of the technical meetings held in Beijing (10/93, 10/94) and Hyderabad (3/96). All Eastern Asian countries have participated directly in this regional effort, with the exclusion of Japan, for which an existing national hazard map was incorporated.

In addition, the "Eastern Asia Natural Hazards Mapping" project, led by the GSJ, has compiled seismicity maps for the whole Eastern Asia region from China to Japan to Indonesia at 1:5 million scale; planning meetings were held in Tsukuba (6/93) and Yokohama (5/94), and two technical workshops in Tsukuba (9/94, 9/95). The EANHM project coordinated its activities with the GSHAP centres in Asia (SSB) and Australia (AGSO).


Activities in this vast area have progressed in independent sub-areas (Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Tonga-Fiji, Vanuatu and Solomon Is.), with a coordinating "South-West Pacific/South-East Asia Regional Meeting" hosted by AGSO in Melbourne (11/95). Given the peculiar character of the whole area, including only island states with no direct boundaries, the approach has been to merge national hazard maps with a careful selection to ensure homogeneity; Australia and New Zealand have also produced revised national maps. AGSO of Canberra has coordinated the integration of the national products in the regional map, including in the later phase Indonesia and Philippines.


Five Andean countries (Bolivia to Venezuela) and four European countries cooperated in the PILOTO program ("Test area for earthquake monitoring and seismic hazard assessment"), launched under GSHAP and sponsored by the European Union (Ct.94-0103) to produce in 1997 a unified SHA for the Andean region. Activities included the integration of national earthquake catalogues and source zonings in common regional databases, a coordinating meeting in occasion of the Regional Seismological Assembly in Brasilia (8/94), regional SHA workshops held in Bogota (10/95, 1/97) and Quito (6/97) and a joint ILP/PILOTO "Training course in paleoseismology" held in Venezuela (2/97).


GSHAP has promoted the reactivation of the former ESC program. Activities to produce a first generation of SHA for the Ibero-Maghreb area by 1997 have been coordinated by the CSIC of Barcelona. Workshops were held in Granada (5/94), Rabat (12/95) and Barcelona (12/96, 5/97), with partial support from IGCP/SESAME, the first in occasion of the UNESCO/USGS "6th Int. Forum on Seismic Zonation: First Ibero-Maghreb Region Conference". In 1996 the CNCPRST of Rabat, the GSHAP Regional Centre, became the "Centre Euro-Mediterraneen d’Evaluation et de Prevention du Risque Sismique or Seismic Hazard Assessment (CEPRIS)" under the Open Partial Agreement on Natural Disasters of the European Council, with the mandate of coordinating activities in the Ibero-Maghreb and Western Mediterranean areas.


This project includes all countries bordering on the Adriatic Sea, from the Alps to Greece, coordinated by OGS of Trieste. A new geodynamic model for the whole Central Mediterranean the seismic zoning map, the combined earthquake catalogue and the new hazard maps, in spectral ground motion parameters, have been compiled during a series of regional workshops (Trieste 7/94, Athens 9/95, Ljubliana 10/95, Pisa, 2/98) and presented in Tel Aviv at the ESC (8/98).


GSHAP, the UNESCO/IUGS IGCP n.382 (SESAME: Seismotectonics and seismic hazard assessment in the Mediterranean), the European Seismological Commission (IASPEI) and the UNESCO/USGS RELEMR are coordinating their activities, to produce a unified hazard mapping for the area, including Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Cyprus, Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Palestine, Saudi Arabia and the Arabian Peninsula. In 1996 SESAME organized its first "Training workshop on seismotectonics and seismic hazard analysis in the Eastern Mediterranean countries" in Cairo (12/96); a second workshop was held again in Cairo (12/97) focussing on the compilation of the active fault map and regional SHA. RELEMR includes hazard mapping from Turkey to the Red Sea; following initial planning meetings in Cairo (10/93) and Paris (5/95), technical meetings and regional coordination meeting were held jointly with SESAME in Cyprus (12/96, 12/97), Thessalonicki (8/97), Amman (5/98) and Tel Aviv (8/98) to produce the first regional PGA map, under the coordination of ETH Zurich. The PGA maps for Turkey, Greece and Iran have been independently produced under national programs. In the last workshop organized by RELEMR in Istanbul (10/98), a new strategy to build common earthquake catalogue, source zones and hazard has now been established for the whole region.


The Test Area for SHA in the Caucasus is coordinated by GSHAP with IASPEI and INTAS support (Ct.94-1644), joining seismological institutions from the Caucasian republics, Russia, Turkey and Iran. Starting in 1994, multinational working groups produced an integrated regional earthquake catalogue (historical and instrumental), a new model of seismic lineaments and seismic zoning, and comparative SHA following probabilistic, deterministic, mixed probabilistic-deterministic and areal probabilistic methodologies. Workshops were held in Tehran (1/93), Moscow (9/93), Ashgabad (10/94), Tehran (5/95), Yerevan (7/96) and Tbilisi (7/97). A comprehensive report has been distributed in 1997, summarizing the results. The NATO-ARW "Historical and prehistorical earthquakes in the Caucasus" (Ct.95-1521) was held in Armenia (7/96) and produced a comprehensive proceedings volume published by Kluwer.


The "Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Seismological Working Group", with support from the Swedish Government, Bergen University, the BGS, IASPEI and GSHAP, held periodic workshops to compile the regional earthquake catalogue and SHA for the African Rift area. Workshops were held in Entebbe (8/94), Addis Abeba (1/95), Bulawayo (2/96) and Bergen (6/97), and the regional PGA map is now available; for the first time eight of the nine participating countries have a national seismic hazard map, including site-specific hazard estimates for the capital cities along the Rift. A second initiative was directed by the Regional Centre at the University of Nairobi, who organized a regional planning meeting in Nairobi (11/93) and hosted the UNESCO/GFZ "International Training Course in Seismology and Seismic Hazard Assessment" (Nairobi, 9/97).


The GSHAP test area has been established in the border region of China, India, Nepal, Myanmar and Bangla-Dash, under the direction of the SSB of Beijing, the GSHAP Regional Centre and the NGRI of Hyderabad; it is the first time that this type of regional framework is effectively operating in the region. Activities initiated with a planning meeting in Beijing (10/93), followed by the preliminary compilation of regional catalogues and by technical workshops in Beijing (10/94) and Hyderabad (3/96), to produce the final earthquake catalogue, seismic source zoning and SHA presented at the ASC Assembly in Tangshan (8/96) and the 30th International Geological Congress in Beijing (8/96).


The "Quantitative seismic zoning of the Circum-Pannonian region" project includes the countries of the Circum-Pannonian basin (Hungary, Romania, Slovania, Croatia, Albania) in addition to Italy and UK. While the aim of this independent project was to produce a deterministic hazard assessment for the region, a specific source zoning (1997) and probabilistic hazard assessment (1998) were produced by BGS, Edinbourgh, for comparison with the deterministic results and for inclusion in SESAME and GSHAP.


The UNESCO/IUGS International Geological Correlation Program n.382 "Seismotectonics and Seismic Hazard Assessment in the Mediterranean" (SESAME) has the goal of coordinating and integrating the results obtained in the Mediterranean and Middle East regions by the different project active in the areas: ADRIA, Ibero-Maghreb, Circum-Pannonian, Eastern Mediterranean, Central-Northern Europe, African Rift, CAUCAS. SESAME is implemented in the 1996-2000 period and has so far co-sponsored many of the events in the different regional programs, culminating in the first compilation of regional hazard presented at the 1998 ESC assembly (Tel Aviv, 8/98). A separate program "A basic european earthquake catalogue and database for the evaluation of long-term seismicity and seismic hazard" (BEECD, EU Ct. 94-0479), coordinated by IRRS of Milan, has produced a regional seismic catalogue covering the European part of the Mediterranean, in coordination with the GSHAP activities listed above.


The GSHAP global map of seismic hazard (PGA) is being completed in the winter 1999, integrating the results obtained in the regional areas. Four of the GSHAP centres acted as focal points to collect and merge the existing results in four large continental areas: USGS, Colorado, for the Americas; GFZ, Potsdam, for Europe-Mediterranean-Africa-Middle East; SSB, Beijing, for Central-Eastern Asia; AGSO, Canberra, for Australia-Western Pacific margin. Global coordination was provided by ETH, Zurich. The final phase of global reunification is now under way to complete the global map for inclusion in the GSHAP volume and for global distribution. An editorial commettee has prepared technical specifications for the final compilation of the regional reports, the databases and the hazard maps. All work is to be completed in the spring 1999.


A key factor in the GSHAP implementation have been the technical workshops, organized in occasion of major international assemblies and more often as independent events to bring together national experts from all the disciplines involved in the assessment of seismic hazard. These meetings were held at project or inter-project scale, with up to a hundred and more participants. The following list reviews the sequence of workshops, as detailed in the regional activities above.
Rome, 6/92Tehran, 1/93Potsdam, 7/93Moscow, 9/93
Beijing, 10/93Ixtapa, 4/94Granada, 5/94Trieste, 7/94
Brasilia, 8/94Entebbe, 8/94Nairobi, 9/94Ashgabad, 10/94
Beijing, 10/94De Bilt, 12/94Addis Abeba, 1/95Wellington, 1/95
Tehran, 5/95Boulder, 7/95Erice, 8/95Athens, 9/95
Bogota, 10/95Ljubliana, 10/95Melbourne, 11/95Rabat, 12/95
Bulawayo, 2/96Hyderabad, 3/96Yerevan, 7/96Tangshan, 8/96
Reykjavik, 9/96Cairo, 12/96Cyprus, 12/96Barcelona, 12/96
Bogota, 1/97Venezuela, 2/97Barcelona,5/97Quito, 6/97
Bergen, 6/97Tbilisi, 7/97Thessalonicki,8/97Cyprus, 10/97
Cairo, 12/97Pisa, 2/98Amman, 5/98Golden, 7/98
Tel Aviv, 8/98Istanbul, 10/98Hyderabad, 12/98



Another key element of the GSHAP implementation is the pursue of activities and tasks devoted to the improvement of the global practice of seismic hazard assessment.

Uniform instrumental global seismic catalogue

With the aim of extending the global instrumental earthquake catalogue and database, now available since 1964 (ISC, NEIC), to cover the whole century, work is in progress at USGS and the University of Colorado, on the digital scanning and processing of the ISS and BCIS Bulletins; the relocation of a uniform global catalogue is under way, using modern travel-times and location procedures used at NEIC.

Software for seismic hazard assessment

The goal of across-boundary integration of seismic hazard databases and products was identified in the Rome 1992 planning meeting as crucial to the global implementation of GSHAP. The "seismotectonic probabilistic approach" was selected as a standard for global SHA application, to allow the comparison and integration of regional maps and zonations. To implement this strategy, an integrated software package dealing with all the steps of seismotectonic hazard computation, FRISK88M, has been made available free of charge by Risk Engineering for GSHAP applications to all test areas and regional centres.

Multidisciplinary approach to seismic hazard assessment

The global evaluation of seismic hazard requires the characterization of the earthquake cycle over recurrence times spanning from 10-102 years in active tectonic areas to 103-105 years in areas of slow crustal deformation. A primary goal of GSHAP has been the implementation of a multisciplinary approach to seismic hazard assessment introducing the results from geological disciplines dealing with active faulting (neotectonics, paleoseismology, geomorphology, geodesy) to complement the historical and instrumental records of earthquakes. This goal has been pursued with several initiatives:
  1. The adoption of the seismotectonic probabilistic approach for global application reflects the aim to incorporate the geological input to characterize the earthquake recurrence in space and time.
  2. The workshop on "Active Faulting Studies for Seismic Hazard Assessment", held in Erice (Sicily, 9/95), brought together specialists in active faulting studies with seismologists and engineers responsible for developing assessment methodologies and for leading major national seismic hazard programs from all continents, to explore new trends in active faulting studies and verify the extent to which the geological input is being used in seismic hazard assessment practice. The workshop produced a document of recommendations, which is being circulated worldwide.
  3. GSHAP and the ILP Projects "II-2: Maps of major active faults" and "II-3: Earthquakes of the late Holocene" have joint activities under way and scheduled for 1995-97, including the 1996 NATO/ARW "Historical and pre-historical earthquakes in the Caucasus" and the "training course in paleoseismology and active faulting in South America" in 1997.
  4. Scientific articles illustrating strategies and examples in multidisciplinary seismic hazard assessment have been published on proceedings volumes and scientific journals; among these, the GSHAP Volume (Annali di Geofisica, vol. 36-3, 1993) includes seminal papers on the integration of the geological input in seismic hazard assessment.


The implementation of GSHAP relied on the cooperation with several international scientific agencies, commissions and programs.

International Lithosphere Program (ILP)

ILP has launched GSHAP (ILP Project II-0) and established its worldwide operation. The integration between GSHAP and the ILP Projects "II-2: Maps of major active faults" and "II-3: Earthquakes of the late Holocene" was planned since the beginning and joint activities were conducted, as listed above.

Internat. Association of Seismology and Physics of the Earth’s Interior (IASPEI)

Seismic hazard assessment is a multidisciplinary effort geared at integrating the input from different geophysical and geological disciplines represented in IUGG and IUGS; however, the traditional affiliation of seismic hazard is within IASPEI and here GSHAP has found the largest support. Several IASPEI commissions and working groups had an active role in the GSHAP implementation: the "Commission on Earthquake Prediction and Hazard" run jointly with GSHAP the Caucasus test area, the "Committee for Developing Countries" and the "Commission for the IDNDR" have been kept closely informed and involved in GSHAP activities, the "Working Group on Earthquake Risk and Losses" is active within the RELEMR program and held joined activities in Moscow (10/93), the "European Seismological Commission" is effectively coordinating GSHAP activities in the larger European-Mediterranean area, allocating special sessions to GSHAP within its annual assemblies, and the newly formed "Asian Seismological Commissions" has done the same in the Asian region.


UNESCO is very active in the field of seismic risk assessment and mitigation and has provided overall support to GSHAP activities. In particular, GSHAP worked in close coordination with three UNESCO programs:
  1. the UNESCO/USGS program "Reduction of Earthquake Risk in the Eastern Mediterranean Region" is integrated in the framework of regional test areas activated by GSHAP in the larger Mediterranean area;
  2. the UNESCO/IUGS International Geological Correlation Program n.382 "Seismotectonics and Seismic Hazard Assessment of the Mediterranean" is one of GSHAP test areas;
  3. GSHAP participated in the UNESCO/GFZ "International Training Courses in Seismology and Seismic Hazard Assessment "in 1995 in Costarica and in 1997 in Kenya.

International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU)

GSHAP is one of the programs selected by the ICSU Committee for IDNDR as scientific contribution to the IDNDR. ICSU has been very supportive of GSHAP since its beginning, providing guidance, encouragement and managing funds which have helped to promote GSHAP activities in several key areas.

International Association of Earthquake Engineers (IAEE)

The need to close the bridge often existing between the scientific and engineering communities working in seismic hazard and risk assessment was recognized in the GSHAP planning and the cooperation with the engineering community has been established. The IAEE "World Seismic Safety Initiative" has recognized GSHAP and accepted GSHAP observers at the WSSI Board of Directors (Vienna, 8/94) and at the Pacific Conference on Earthquake Engineering (Melbourne, 11/95); representatives of the engineering community sit on the GSHAP Steering Committee.

European Countil (EC)

The EC Open Partial Agreement on Major Disasters has named the CNCPRST of Rabat, one of the GSHAP Regional Centres, as the "centre EuroMediterraneen d’Evaluation et de Prevention du Risque Sismique or Seismic Hazard Assessment "(CEPRIS), with the mandate of coordinating activities in the Ibero-Maghreb and Western Mediterranean areas.

World Meteorological Organization (WMO)

The WMO Hydrology and Water Resources Department is implementing its "System for Technology Exchange for Natural Disasters" (STEND), an information exchange programme aimed at increasing awareness of available technology through the dissemination of knowledge about the different methodologies used in fields related to natural hazards. The GSHAP Regional Centres have been included in the list of STEND focal points for knowledge transfer and a more close cooperation ie expected in the future, pending the availbility of operation funds in many of the Regional Centres.

Earthquake and Megacities Initiative (EMI)

The final years of the Decade are shifting the emphasis on the protection of megacities, moving from hazard assessment to engineering applications and risk mitigation strategies. Several UN sponsored initiatives are under way, including the ILP’s "Earthquake and Megacities Initiative". Under request by ICSU and the IDNDR, GSHAP computed in several regions site-specific hazards as input for megacities programs.


The GSHAP implementation and the activities of the Regional Centres and test areas required significant funding. As the support directly provided by the UN/IDNDR has been minimal, GSHAP has secured support from different sources:
  1. Funds provided or raised by the Regional Centres have been instrumental to organize workshops and conduct activities at the Regional Centres (i.e. at GFZ, SSB, IIEES, JIPE, USGS).
  2. Support was provided by ING, Roma, the GSHAP Coordinating Centre in the 1992-97 period, to organize general GSHAP events such as the 1992 Technical Planning meeting in Rome, the publication of the GSHAP Technical Volume, the 1995 Workshop on Active Faulting Studies for Seismic Hazard Assessment. In the final phase (1997-99) the coordination support has been provided by ETH, Zurich.
  3. Projects submitted to international funding agencies for scientific research and cooperation provided significant support for the implementation of the test areas in South America (CEC Ct.94-0103 PILOTO), the Caucasus (INTAS Ct.94-1644 CAUCAS; NATO-ARW Historical and prehistorical earthquakes in the Caucasus), the Mediterranean (EC/OPA CEPRIS; IGCP n.382 SESAME).
  4. Yearly support has been provided throughout the project by ILP, ICSU and IASPEI; occasional contributions have been made by UNESCO and Kinemetrics.
  5. Local and national organizations all over the world have allowed and often supported the participation of individual scientists in GSHAP activities.
  6. Several international projects and multi-national areas in seismic hazard assessment were supported by other agencies in different areas of the world (e.g. RELEMR, EANHM, QSEZ-CIPAR, BEECD, PAIGH), in coordination with GSHAP.


The GSHAP implementation and activities were supervised by a Steering Committee listing fifteen renown experts in seismic hazard assessment and earthquake engineering from all the world. The role of many of the Steering Committee members has been instrumental in setting guidelines, conducting regional activities, raising support and participating in the global programs of GSHAP.


GSHAP on the Web

Regional reports, GSHAP yearly reports, summaries and maps of seismicity, source zones and seismic hazard are available freely on the GSHAP homepage on The page is not final yet, as a few regional products are still missing and the global map will be available in the spring 1999.

GSHAP summary volume and CD-ROM

The regional reports, detailing the compilation of the databases and of the hazard results in the GSHAP test-areas and regions, are being collected in a special volume, prepared following common guidelines, including also a CD-ROM with the earthquake databases, the seismic source zones and the regional hazard maps. The volume and CD-ROM are scheduled for release in spring 1999, published as a Special Issue of Annali di Geofisica.


The dissemination and publication of GSHAP ideas and results started with the GSHAP Volume (Annali di Geofisica, vol. 36, 3-4, 1993; 2000 copies). GSHAP activities and results have been presented at the major international and regional assemblies and meetings. Research papers and articles describing the program’s approach and regional activities have appeared on scientific journals, special volumes and regional bulletins. Sessions dedicated to GSHAP have been hosted by the assemblies of IASPEI, ESC, ASC and SSA and by other international meetings. GSHAP workshops have been organized in all test areas, as listed above.


Progress reports and summaries prepared by the Coordinating Centre have been distributed worldwide (7/92, 11/92, 12/93, 2/94, 9/94, 6/95, 4/96, 1/97, 1/98). Periodic summaries have appeared on bulletins and newsletter of IASPEI, ICSU, ILP, AGU.


The GSHAP has fulfilled in large part the goals and design principles set in 1992. In addition to the regional and global results and products listed above, the following should be noted: The GSHAP suffered also setbacks and right criticisms.


GSHAP was developed with the support of international projects and organizations, of national scientific agencies and of research institutions, but especially with the efforts of hundreds of individual scientists (more than 400) willing to devote their time, knowledge and strength to this international endeavour.

Report released on February 10, 1999, by D. Giardini, GSHAP Coordinator

  Appendix I: Index, GSHAP Summary Volume, Annali di Geofisica, 1999

The Global Seismic Hazard Assessment Program, D. Giardini

The compilation of the GSHAP map of global seismic hazard, D. Giardini, D. Mayer-Rosa, K. McCue, R. McGuire, K. Shedlock & P. Zhang

Seismic Hazard Map of the Western Hemisphere, K. M. Shedlock & J. G. Tanner

The Seismic Hazard Map of the European-Mediterranean-African region, G. Grünthal, D. Giardini, D. Mayer-Rosa & S. Sellami

Seismic Hazard Map of North and Central America and the Caribbean (GSHAP Region 1), K. M. Shedlock

Seismic Hazard of South America - CERESIS (GSHAP Region 2), A. Giesecke

Seismic Hazard Assessment of Northern Europe (GSHAP Region 3), G. Grünthal

Seismic Hazard Assessment of Iran (GSHAP Region 6), B. Tavakoli & M. Ghafory- Ashtiany

Seismic Hazard of Northern Eurasia (GSHAP Region 7), V.I. Ulomov

Seismic Hazard of Eastern Asia (GSHAP Region 8), P. Zhang & K. Shedlock

Seismic Hazard Mapping of Australian, the Southwest Pacific and Southern Asia (GSHAP Region 10), K. McCue

Seismic Hazard Assessment of the Northern Andean region, C. Dimaté, L. Drake, A. Fuenzalida, D. Giardini, G. Gruenthal, L. Ocola, H. Rendon & H. Yepes

Seismic Hazard Assessment in the Ibero-Maghreb Region, M.-J. Jiménez, M. García-Fernández, M. Chadi, D. El Foul, A. Izquierdo, J.-M. Martínez-Solares, C. Sousa-Oliveira & B.-A. Tadili

Seismic Hazard Assessment in Eastern and Southern Africa, V. Midzi, D. J. Hlatywayo, L. S. Chapola, F. Kebede, K. Atakan, D. K. Lombe, G. Turyomuru-gyendo & F. A. Tugume

GSHAP seismic hazard assessment for the Adria region, D. Slejko, R. Camassi, I. Cecic, D. Herak, M. Herak, S. Kociu, V. Kouskouna, J. Lapajne, K. Makropoulos, C. Meletti, B. Muco, C. Papaioannou, L. Peruzza, A. Rebez, P. Scandone, E. Sulstarova, N. Voulgaris, M. Zivcic & P. Zupancic

Seismic Hazard Assessment of the Circum-Pannonian basin (EU-CIPAR-QSEZ), R. Musson

Seismic Hazard Assessment of Turkey and the Aegean, M. Erdik

Seismic Hazard Map of the Near East (RELEMR/SESAME/ESC), A-Q. Amrat, E. Ibrahim, D. Mayer-Rosa, G. Papakyriacou, S. Riad, S. Sellami, A. Shapira, W. Hays, M. Al Haddad & M. El Khoubbi

Seismic Hazard Assessment for the Caucasus test area, S. Balassanian, D. Giardini, V. Ulomov, T. Ashirov, T. Chelidze, M. Erdik, A. Gassanov, M. Ghafory-Ashtiany, N. Kondorskaya, G. Molchan, B. Pustovitenko & V. Trifonov

Seismotectonics and Seismic Hazard Assessment of the Mediterranean Region (SESAME, ICTP n.382), D. Giardini, M. Garcia-Fernandez, K. Macropulos, S. Riad, S. Sellami

The India-China-Tibet GSHAP Test Area, H. Gupta & P. Zhang


  Appendix II: List of GSHAP Contacts

Coordinator D. Giardini ETH Zurich, CH
Chair, SteerCom H. Gupta NGRI Hyderabad, India
Test areas and regional centres
South America A. Giesecke CERESIS Lima, Peru
Andes C. Dimaté INGEOMINAS Bogotà, Colombia
North America K. Shedlock USGS Golden, USA
C-N Europe G. Grunthal GFZ Potsdam, DE
Ibero-Maghreb M. Garcia CSIC Barcelona, Spain
B. Iben Brahim CNCPRST Rabat, Morocco
ADRIA D. Slejko OGS Trieste, Italy
C. Pannonian R. Musson BGS Edimburg, UK
Caucasus S. Balassanian NSSP Yerevan, Armenia
N. Eurasia V. Ulomov IPE Moscow, Russia
Iran M. G. Ashtiany IIEES Tehran, Iran
Africa Rift K. Atakan Bergen Univ. Norway
I. Nyambok Nairobi Univ. Kenya
C-N Asia P. Zhang SSB Beijing, China
Oceania K. McCue AGSO Canberra, Australia
Global programs
Global Catalogue E. Engdahl USGS Boulder, USA
Software R. McGuire Risk Eng. Boulder, USA
D. Mayer-Rosa ETH Zurich, CH


  Appendix III: Acronyms

ADRIAAdria plate GSHAP test area
AGSOAustralian Geological Survey Organization
AGUAmerican Geophysical Union
ARWNATO Advanced Research Workshop
BEECDCEC Ct. 94-0497: A basic european earthquake catalogue and database for the evaluation of long-term seismicity and seismic hazard
BGSBritish Geological Service
CAUCASINTAS Ct. 94-1644: Test area for seismic hazard assessment in the Caucasus
CEPRIS EC/OPACentre EuroMediterraneen d’Evaluation et de Prevention di Risque Sismique
CERESISCentro Sismologico Regional para la America del Sur
CNCPRSTCentre National de Coordination et de Planification de la Recherche Scientifique et Technique, Rabat
DACHGSHAP test area covering Germany, Austria and Switzerland
EANHMEastern Asia Natural Hazards Mapping project
EC/OPAEuropean Council - Open Partial Agreement on Major Disasters
ESARS-WGEastern and Southern Africa Regional Seismological Working Group
ESCEuropean Seismological Commission (IASPEI)
ETHSwiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich
GFZGeo-Forshungs Zentrum, Potsdam
GSCGeological Service of Canada
GSJGeological Service of Japan
IAEEInternational Association of Earthquake Engineering
IASPEIInternational Association of Seismology and Physics of the Earth Interior
ICSUInternational Council of Scientific Unions
IDNDRUN International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction
IGCInternational Geological Congress
IGCPInternational Geological Correlation Program
IIEESInternational Institute of Earthquake Engineering and Seismology
ILPInternational Lithosphere Program
INGIstituto Nazionale di Geofisica, Rome
IRRSIstituto per la Ricerca sul Rischio Sismico, Milan
ISCInternation Seismological Centre
IUGGInternational Union of Geodesy and Geophysics
IUGSInternational Union of Geological Sciensces
JIPEJoint Institutes of Physics of the Earth, Moscow
NEICUS National Earthquake Information Centre
NGRINational Geophysical Research Institute, Hyderabad
NSFUS National Science Foundation
OGSOsservatorio Geofisico Sperimentale, Trieste
PAIGHPan-American Institute of Geography and History
PGAPeak Ground Acceleration
PILOTOCEC Ct. 94-0103: Pilot project for regional earthquake monitoring and seismic hazard assessment (EuMe-Andean regions)
RADIUSRisk Assessmentand Diagnosis of Urban Areas against Seismic Disasters project
RELEMRReduction of Earthquake Losses in the Eastern Mediterranean Region project
SESAMEUNESCO/IGCP 382 Seismotectonics and Seismic Hazard Assess. of the Mediterranean
SHASeismic Hazard Assessment
SSASeismological Society of America
SSBState Seismological Bureau, Beijing
STENDWMO System for Technology Exchange for Natural Disasters
UNAMUniversitad National Autonoma de Mexico, Mexico City
UNESCOUN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
USGSUnited States Geological Survey
WMOWorld Meteorological Organization
WSSIWorld Seismic Safety Initiative