Earthquake Risk and Engineering towards a Resilient World

9 - 10 July 2015, Homerton College, Cambridge, UK


SECED 2015 was a two-day conference on Earthquake and Civil Engineering Dynamics that took place on 9-10th July 2015 at Homerton College, Cambridge.

This was the first major conference to be held in the UK on this topic since SECED hosted the 2002 European Conference on Earthquake Engineering in London.

The conference brought together experts from a broad range of disciplines, including structural engineering, nuclear engineering, seismology, geology, geotechnical engineering, urban development, social sciences, business and insurance; all focused on risk, mitigation and recovery.

Conference themes

  • Geotechnical earthquake engineering
  • Seismic design for nuclear facilities
  • Seismic hazard and engineering seismology
  • Masonry structures
  • Risk and catastrophe modelling
  • Vibrations, blast and civil engineering dynamics
  • Dams and hydropower
  • Seismic assessment and retrofit of engineered and non-engineered structures
  • Social impacts and community recovery

Keynote speakers

SECED 2015 featured the following keynote speakers (affiliations correct at the time of the conference):

  • Peter Ford and Tim Allmark, Office for Nuclear Regulation, UK
  • Don Anderson, CH2M HILL, Seattle, USA
  • Bernard Dost, Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute, The Netherlands
  • Anne Kiremidjian, Stanford University, USA
  • Rob May, Golder Associates, Australia
  • Tiziana Rossetto, University College London, UK
  • Andrew Whittaker, University at Buffalo, USA
  • Mike Willford, Arup, The Netherlands

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Site effects have caused significant damage to structures even in small magnitude earthquakes. However, in countries such as the UK where the seismic risk is perceived to be low, little site-specific seismic characterisation has been carried out, potentially reducing the resilience of infrastructure design. Research is being undertaken to develop a cost-effective method that produces detailed shear wave velocity profiles and hazard classification for previously uncharacterised sites. This paper reviews the application of this method as it is carried out on three strong ground motion stations in the UK. For each, a geological profile is determined through desk study, previous in situ measurements and walkover surveys. This profile is correlated with a database of worldwide shear wave recordings, using similarity of lithofacies and geological deposition. A shear wave velocity range is developed for each site, which is classified according to Eurocode 8 criteria. Microtremor testing was subsequently carried out, validating the theoretical results.

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