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The application of seismic techniques to the study of Earth surface processes is a rapidly growing field. However, the field is relatively new and inherently multidisciplinary. As a consequence, no platform currently exists for the exchange of ideas amongst the growing number of seismologists, geomorphologists, glaciologists, hydrologists, volcanologists, geotechnical engineers, and other Earth surface scientists who are using or want to use seismic techniques.

This conference aims to change that by starting to build a community around environmental seismology. We plan to survey the state of the art, share new analysis techniques, discuss specific scientific needs, and identify opportunities for obtaining benchmark data where both seismological and traditional geomorphic observations can be or have been obtained with high data quality.

We invite all scientists who use seismic techniques to study geomorphological processes, the cryosphere, the weather, the shallow subsurface, and other phenomena at or near the Earth’s surface. We also decisively invite all those who have realised the potential of seismic techniques and are interested in linking with the pioneering community or who wish to use seismic approaches in the future.

Seismic methods have distinct advantages over and complement traditional methods for the study of Earth surface dynamics. For example, they allow for the observation of a multitude of processes acting on the Earth’s surface and their interactions throughout the entire landscape, and we can gather near-complete catalogues of events and record their distribution in time and space. This allows us to study the interaction of process groups, cause and response within temporal sequences, and lead and lag times with unprecedented detail and applications that were not possible previously.

Though relatively new, seismological techniques in Earth surface research have now passed the proof-of-concept stage and several ground-breaking scientific results have been published, there is still much progress to be made. We anticipate that by facilitating the formation of a community of scientists using or interested in using these techniques through this workshop, scientific progress will be expedited, will improve communication between scientists from disparate fields, and environmental seismology will find even broader application.

At the workshop, we plan to do the following:

  • survey the state of the field in a series of keynote lectures from leading environmental seismologists;
  • address the breadth and novelties of current research through presentations by attendees;
  • decisively foster overarching discussion between individual programme points by including scheduled discussion time after talks and allowing for plenty of contact time outside of scheduled activities;
  • work towards focused discussion in break-out groups.

Anticipated outcomes of the workshop include the following:

  • creation of an international network of scientists working on or interested in seismic techniques to study Earth surface processes;
  • a special issue with a state-of-the-art collection of papers;
  • a white paper on seismological techniques in the Earth surface sciences;