A bibliography of seismic events

A bibliography of seismic events

Search for previous scientific work is never an easy task. Thanks to the internet and good search engines such as Google Scholar this process has been made a bit more easier. (It makes young scientists wonder how searching was done in the pre-internet days!). Although searching nowadays seems to be a simple tasks, it still requires putting in the correct combination of search terms. Furthermore you cannot just assume that if something does not show up on the internet search then it does not exists.

Seismologists studying a specific earthquake now have a new tool that can help them with their scientific search. The International Seismological Centre (ISC) has just launched the ISC Event Bibliography database ( The database allows users to search for publications linked to a seismic event (earthquake or anthropogenic event) in the ISC Bulletin ( The search can include various event parameters (e.g., location and time of the event) and/or publications parameters (e.g., author name, journal, year of publication). A detail explanation can be found in this month edition of the Seismological Research Letters – freely available online (

Earthquake locations of most scientifically discussed events

Earthquake locations of most scientifically discussed events. The grey circles refer to events with less than 20 associated publications, dark gray squares to events having 20–54 associated publications, and black stars refer to the 50 events listed below the map. Bottom: The first 50 seismic events and the number of associated publications (N).

The work on the ISC database has been ongoing since 2012, linking parametric data related to seismic events in the ISC Bulletin to publications considering specific seismic events. The database starts with publications from the 1950s and also includes events (mostly earthquakes) from the first half of last century. As new publications become available the database is regularly updated. The new entries in the database are, for now, from selected journals that encompass a wide range of disciplines related to geoscience.

Although the database is quite extensive, the collection is not entirely comprehensive yet, and users are welcome to contribute via a submission form ( or by contacting the ISC directly (

Matthew Agius is a recent PhD graduate from the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies in Ireland and is now doing research at the University of Southampton (National Oceanography Centre). His research focuses on the dynamics of the lithosphere beneath Tibet, the Central Mediterranean, and the Pacific Ocean. Matthew’s role as a young scientist representative is to promote the efforts done by young researchers and to engage in discussions that concern seismology students. You can reach Matthew via e-mail at

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