The Science of Keeping Materials in the Loop

Thursday, October 13, 2022

This third webinar of Earth Science Week 2022 webinar series explores the circular economy of raw materials, including production, use, reuse, recycling, and waste streams. The speakers discuss the roles of different stakeholders within this lifecycle and explore ways to re-capture raw materials through the different stages within the circular economy, such as is done with urban mining. The speakers also provide a discussion about the differences in designing approaches to raw materials development from the perspective of a producer vs. a provider.

Our speakers are: 

  • Dr. Federico Magalini, Director Sustainability Services UK and Italy, dss+  
  • Dr. Luis Tercero Espinoza, Coordinator of Business Unit Raw Materials, Fraunhofer  
  • Dr. Ola Isaksson, Professor in Systems Engineering and Engineering Design, Department of Industrial and Materials Science, Chalmers University of Technology  

Browse the Earth Science Week 2022 webinar series.

This webinar is generously sponsored by: 



Overcoming Pandemic-related Impacts in the Geosciences: Perspectives from Post-docs

Thursday, October 6, 2022

This is the first of our Fall webinar series on best practices and adaptations to pandemic-related impacts. In this webinar, we hear from two recent geoscience graduates, one of which who was a post-doctoral fellow during the pandemic, and a professor emeritus about the strategies they used to overcome pandemic-related restrictions and impacts to their work and research activities. Our panelists also delve into the temporary and lasting impacts of the pandemic, new opportunities that have arisen as a result of the pandemic and provide insights on how to navigate restrictions and setbacks.

Our speakers are:

  • Dr. Arthur Sylvester, Professor Emeritus, Department of Earth Science, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Dr. Curtis Walker, Project Scientist, Research Applications Laboratory, National Center for Atmospheric Research
  • Dr. Elizabeth (Libby) Ives, Geologist, Florence Bascom Geoscience Center, U.S. Geological Survey

Funding for this project is provided by the National Science Foundation (Award #2029570). The results and interpretation of the survey are the views of the American Geosciences Institute and not those of the National Science Foundation.

Exploring for the Future International Showcase

Thursday, August 11, 2022

By 2024 the Australian Government will have invested $225 million in an unprecedented level of precompetitive geoscience data acquisition and knowledge generation. Led by Australia’s national geoscience organisation, Geoscience Australia, the program is gathering and analysing geological, geochemical and geophysical data. Results are publicly available and are informing decision-making and investment in Australia’s resources sector to deliver a reliable pipeline of resources for the world.

The Exploring for the Future International Showcase will provide an overview of the program’s impact and will share scientific advancements made to date, through a series of short talks and a question and answer session. At its heart, the program is stimulating industry today by delivering an improved understanding of Australia’s potential minerals, energy, and groundwater resources.

More information is available on the website (www.ga.gov.au/eftf) and you can access the vast array of datasets and decision support tools developed by the program through the Data Discovery portal (https://portal.ga.gov.au/persona/eftf).

View the next presentation in this event.

Presenters and topics

  • Welcome and introductory remarks, Dr. Karol Czarnota
  • Value of precompetitive geoscience, Dr. Andrew Heap
  • Big data acquisition, tools and the portal, Dr. Laura Gow
  • Uncovering resource potential: Tennant Creek to Mount Isa, Dr. Geoff Fraser
  • Advancing mineral systems science, Dr. Arianne Ford
  • Hydrogen and green steel potential, Dr. Andrew Feitz

The presentations will be followed with a moderated discussion between the presenters and event attendees.

All sessions will be conducted in English with live captioning in French, Spanish, Portuguese, Indonesian, Modern Chinese, and Hindi.

Please contact eftf@gmail.com if you have any follow-on questions about the presentations or the event.

This event is organized by Geoscience Australia and hosted by the American Geosciences Institute

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The not so great outdoors? Questioning how we recruit students from historically marginalized communities into the geosciences

Friday, May 6, 2022

The AGU Heads and Chairs program and the American Geosciences Institute are pleased to be offering a free online webinar and discussion about best practices to recruit and retain students. Recent research has shown us that informing students about the altruistic potential of geoscience careers can be an effective strategy to broaden recruitment and engagement of students from historically marginalized communities into the geosciences.

Meet authors Elizabeth M. Griffith (Associate Professor) and W. Ashley Griffith (Associate Professor) and Steven Lower (Director and Professor) from The Ohio State University School of Geosciences who will discuss how they used this research to improve their recruitment and retention practices to increase the participation of students from communities that have been historically marginalized in the geosciences.


Additional Resources

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Geoscience COVID-19 Impacts Study Update: Examining Impacts and Resilience within Academia

Friday, April 8, 2022

The AGU Heads and Chairs program and the American Geosciences Institute are pleased to be offering a free online webinar and discussion about the latest results from the ongoing Geoscience COVID-19 Impacts study as it pertains to changes in instructional activities, academic department operations, and the changes that faculty and students have navigated since early 2020. AGI staff will examine the impacts and resilience within academia as departments, faculty, and students have adapted to changing instructional and operational environments over the past three years. This will be an open discussion about the survey results and about insights from attendees on how their departments, faculty, and students have weathered the COVID-19 pandemic.

Funding for this project is provided by the National Science Foundation (Award #2029570). The results and interpretation of the survey are the views of the American Geosciences Institute and not those of the National Science Foundation.

Additional Resources

pdf download icon Download the slides from this webinar


Geo-hazard Early Warning Systems to Protect Vulnerable Populations

Friday, April 22, 2022

This free webinar, featuring two Geoscientists without Borders® (GWB) humanitarian projects, provides information about the challenges and ways forward for implementing hazard early warning systems in data sparse locations to protect vulnerable populations. Our speakers will discuss geophysical methods carried out to build a robust database aimed at predicting natural disasters, such as landslides and earthquakes, ultimately to improve existing models and advance warning times for populations in high-risk hazard locations.

View the next video in this webinar

Our speakers

  • Dr. Václav Kuna, Postdoctoral Researcher, Institute of Geophysics, Czech Academy of Sciences

NepalEEW: Testing the feasibility of an Earthquake Early Warning System in Nepal
YouTube download icon Video | pdf download iconAbstract | pdf download icon Presentation slides

  • Dr. Thomas Oomen, Professor of Geological Engineering, Director of Computational Science and Engineering PhD Program, Michigan Technological University

Landslide Early Warning in a Data Sparse Region, Challenges and Way Forward: The case of Idukki, Western Ghats, India
YouTube download icon Video | pdf download iconAbstract | pdf download icon Presentation slides

Additional resources

The above GWB projects help address United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs) SDG 9 (Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure), SDG 11 (Sustainable cities and communities) and SDG 17 (Partnerships for Goals). For more information on UNSDGs, please visit https://sdgs.un.org/.

For more information about these and other GWB humanitarian geoscience projects, please visit: https://seg.org/gwb, follow us on social media, GWBatSEG and email at withoutborders@seg.org.

About our speakers:

Václav Kuna (*1988) works as a postdoctoral researcher at the at the Institute of Geophysics of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic since September 2020. He received his Ph.D. degree in seismology at Oregon State University in Oregon, USA, studying seismicity and tectonics of the Blanco Transform Fault Zone in the northeast Pacific Ocean using seismometers placed at the ocean bottom around the fault. During the Ph.D. studies, Vaclav has participated in several large-scale broadband seismic experiments in the Caucasus mountain range and Himalayas and was part of a team monitoring aftershock seismicity after the M7.8 earthquake in Nepal in April 2015. This experience steered his scientific interest away from a purely academic seismological career towards more mission-driven science. At the Institute of Geophysics, Vaclav studies novel, low-cost Earthquake Early Warning systems based on IoT (Internet of Things) principle. He wants to test the feasibility of such a system in central Nepal to help to reduce the extreme seismic risks in the region.

Thomas Oommen is a Professor in the Geological Engineering department and the Director of the Computational Science and Engineering Ph.D. Program at Michigan Technological University. He is actively involved in undergraduate and graduate education, research, and service. He teaches the engineering geology course at Michigan Tech, has participated in over $7 million in research grants, and published over 70 peer-reviewed journal articles. His research focuses on utilizing remotely sensed data, machine learning algorithms, and geological knowledge to solve real-world problems that affect human health and safety. Beyond Michigan Tech, he serves as the chair of the editorial advisory board of the GSA and AEG joint publication Environmental & Engineering Geoscience, chair for the Environmental and Engineering Geology division of GSA, vice-chair of the ASCE Geoinstitute Engineering Geology and Site Characterization Committee, a member of the AEG technical committee on landslides, and a member of the AGU Natural Hazards awards committee. He is also an ABET program evaluator for the geological engineering and geology programs.

Additional Questions & Answers from the webinar

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How are you planning to provide power and internet to stations in the mountains?
Power via electric gridline is available in the mountainous regions where we are planning to deploy our sensors. We plan to use wifi/ethernet connection that uses cellular internet available in the region. However, we need to test the stability of both the internet and power connections. Future versions of the seismic sensor will be equipped with a solar panel, battery, and cellular internet connectivity so they can be more standalone in regions like this one.

I'm interested to learn more about the dead zone around the epicenter. In Utah, 85% of our population lives on top of the Wasatch Fault (large normal faults related to extension).
The earthquake early warning system takes roughly 10 seconds since the earthquake origin time to characterize the earthquake. This includes the travel time of earthquake primary waves from the hypocenter to closest stations, data transmission to server, data processing etc. At the time of 10 sec since the earthquake origin, damaging secondary waves will have already reached a region within about 40 km radius around the earthquake epicenter. Therefore, that region cannot receive the alert in time and the EEW system may help only in regions farther away from the earthquake epicenter.

What is the cost of the sensors?
The sensor is now manufactured by Grillo, Inc. and the price is a few hundred dollars (particular price depends on the type of enclosure, sensor with/without gps etc). The sensor design is open-source and published on github (https://github.com/openeew/openeew-sensor) so anyone can manufacture it themselves. In that case the total cost will largely result from the cost of individual components, which depends on the ordered quantity and other factors.

Would one potentially be able to use these types of earthquake sensors to detect earthquake events or submarine landslides and thus create an early warning system for local tsunamis originating very close to shore?
Unfortunately, I am not familiar with seismic signals of submarine landslides. The sensor needs to be deployed on land and cannot be used as an underwater sensor. On land, it can capture accelerations greater than about 40 micro-g. If underwater landslides create signals stronger than this threshold, the system can potentially work for the job. However, new processing methodology would have to be developed/adopted for this specific application.

Can we link Direct push with Electrical Resistivity Tomography (ERT) surveys for landslide studies?
We don't have direct push data for our study region. However, if you have both direct push and ERT data, it will be an exciting link to make.

Are you also using water gauge stations on the different rivers?
We are using groundwater well information.

Would it be practical to use the USDA soil profile (websoil/) in slope susceptibility analysis?
That will be something to explore. However, the question is whether USDA data has sufficient spatial resolution to perform slope stability analysis. Combining USDA data with some geophysical surveys can be promising.

2020-21 Recent Graduate Surveys: A Look at Emerging Trends

Friday, March 25, 2022

Please join the AGU Heads and Chairs program and the American Geosciences Institute as we discuss the results of the 2020-21 Recent Graduate Surveys and consider emerging trends. This webinar serves as a refresh and expansion on the November 2021 Heads and Chairs discussion, and takes a look at the final results of the 2020-21 Recent Graduate Surveys as well as associated employment trend data from the COVID-19 impacts on the geosciences to examine what last year’s graduates experienced. In addition, we will discuss some emerging trends in workforce, including the rapid contraction in not only the overall U.S. workforce, but also of undergraduate students and what that may or may not portend for the geosciences, with an intent to have a group conversation about current department experiences in this changing human capital environment.

Critical Minerals Mapping Initiative Update

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

This forum will present an update on the Critical Minerals Mapping Initiative (CMMI), a joint research program between the Geological Survey of Canada (GSC), the U.S. Geological Survey, and Geoscience Australia (GA). Presenters will provide the latest updates to the critical mineral portal (www.criticalminerals.org), the Critical Minerals in Ores database (CMiO), and its underlying deposit classification system. New critical mineral research and modelling results will also be presented from each of the three geological surveys. The forum will conclude with a question and answer period that will allow participants to interact with the speakers and engage on the topics of critical mineral research and public geoscience.

View the next presentation in this event.


  • Albert Hofstra, United States Geological Survey, USA
  • Simon van der Wielen, Geoscience Australia, Australia
  • Marie-Aude Bonnardot, Geoscience Australia, Australia
  • Louise Corriveau, Geological Survey of Canada, Canada
  • Omid Haeri Ardakani, Geological Survey of Canada, Canada
  • George Case, United States Geological Survey, USA

Organized by Geoscience Australia, the Geological Survey of Canada, and the United States Geological Survey, and hosted by the American Geosciences Institute

Please contact Christopher Lawley at christopher.lawley@NRCan-RNCan.gc.ca with any questions about this event. 

Presentation slides

pdf download iconAlbert Hofstra
pdf download iconSimon van der Wielen
pdf download iconMarie-Aude Bonnardot
pdf download iconLouise Corriveau
pdf download iconOmid Haeri Ardakani
pdf download iconGeorge Case

pdf download iconDownload the event flyer

Geologic Names and Usage: A Guide to Stratigraphic Nomenclature

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Stratigraphic nomenclature is the system of proper names given to specific stratigraphic units, which provides a universal language essential for all scientific publications. Consistent and effective communication in the geosciences requires systematic use of stratigraphic nomenclature. This review of geologic names usage and stratigraphic principles serves as a foundation for professionals and students to improve geoscience communication among all industries.

The importance of consistent stratigraphic nomenclature as a means of effective geologic communication has been recognized since the USGS established the Geologic Names Committee (GNC) in 1899 to evaluate and address issues of nomenclature. A geologic names review is more than spell checking geologic names and correcting usage of rank and rank terms. It also includes making sure publications are in conformance with the North American Stratigraphic Code or the International Stratigraphic Guide. It is essential to make sure there is stratigraphic consistency between text, correlation charts, descriptions of stratigraphic units, figures, and tables within papers and geologic maps, as this is a prerequisite for clear explanations, and precise discussion of data and interpretations.

About the speaker

Randall Orndorff is a Research Geologist for the U.S. Geological Survey, Florence Bascom Geoscience Center. Mr. Orndorff is internationally recognized for his work in geologic mapping, stratigraphy, and structural geology and was appointed Secretary General for North and Central America for the Commission for the Geologic Map of the World. He has been a Commissioner representing the USGS on the North American Commission on Stratigraphic Nomenclature since the late 1990’s and is Chair of the USGS Geologic Names Committee. Randall has published on many geology subjects, including stratigraphy, regional geology, structural geology, and karst, and has published 29 geologic maps. Also, Randall has 15 years of experience in project and program management for the National Cooperative Geologic Mapping Program (NCGMP) as Associate Program Coordinator and the Eastern Geology and Paleoclimate Science Center (EGPSC) as Director. 

CEU Credits

For those who wish to earn CEU credits, please complete the associated on-demand GOLI course that was developed from this webinar.

Additional Resources

Building Antiracist Spaces in Your Department

Friday, February 11, 2022

The AGU Heads and Chairs program and the American Geosciences Institute are pleased to be offering a free online webinar and discussion about building antiracist spaces in academic departments. A recent paper by Bala Chaudhary, Dartmouth University and Asmeret Berhe, University of California Merced discussed ten simple rules for building an antiracist lab. Meet the authors and discuss how you can apply these principles to create not only policies and inclusive spaces in your laboratories but in also other spaces within your department. Please join us Friday 11th February, 2022 at 1 pm Eastern Time for a stimulating conversation with the authors and other attendees from our geoscience community.



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