The following Oregon State University faculty members have expertise related to earthqaukes and tsunamis and are willing to speak with journalists. Their specific expertise, and contact information, is listed below. For help with other OSU faculty experts, contact Sean Nealon, 541-737-0787, [email protected].


    Chris Goldfinger, 541-737-2066; [email protected]
    Goldfinger is an OSU oceanographer and one of the world’s leading experts on subduction zone earthquakes. He can discuss the history of the Pacific Northwest’s Cascadia Subduction Zone and compare it with the structures of Japan and the Indian Ocean region.

    • History of major earthquakes in the Pacific Northwest
    • Subduction zone earthquakes
    • Indonesia and Sumatra

    Robert Yeats, 541-737-1226; [email protected]
    Yeats, a professor emeritus of geosciences, was one of the first scientists to suggest that the Pacific Northwest may be due for a massive subduction zone earthquake and he spent much of his career outlining earthquakes risks for areas from southern California to Haiti.

    • Earthquake hazard evaluation
    • Fault lines near major cities along the West Coast of the U.S.
    • The Cascadia Subduction Zone

    John Nabelek, 541-737-2757; [email protected]
    Nabelek studies global tectonic processes, including how large earthquakes are triggered, and has conducted research in Tibet, Nepal and other locations. He also can discuss the science of seismicity and techniques for analyzing earthquake sources.

    • Global tectonic processes and large earthquakes
    • The science of seismicity
    • Earthquakes in Tibet, Nepal and elsewhere in Asia

    Bob Dziak, 541-867-0175; [email protected]
    Dziak is a marine geologist who uses an array of hydrophones coordinated by the U.S. Navy to “listen” to undersea earthquakes and learn more about the large-scale and small-scale seismic activity of ocean regions around the world.

    • Earthquake “swarms” off Oregon.
    • Seismic activity in the world’s oceans
    • Earthquakes in the Southern Ocean and Antarctica

    Anne Trehu, 541-737-2655; [email protected]
    Trehu directs the National Science Foundation-funded EarthScope national office, which coordinates research on the structure of the deep-Earth to provide scientists with a better understanding of the physical processes causing earthquakes and volcanoes.

    • Pacific and North American tectonic plate structures
    • Pacific Northwest seismology arrays
    • Crust and lithosphere of the Cascadia Subduction Zone

    Chris Higgins, 541-737-8869, [email protected]
    Higgins is a professor of structural engineering and Slayden Construction Faculty Fellow at OSU, where he is an expert on structural performance during earthquakes.

    • Building and bridge performance during earthquakes
    • Design of building and bridges to withstand earthquakes
    • Why structures collapse during earthquake

    Tom Miller, 541-737-3322, [email protected]

    Miller is a structural engineer and has performed research on the response of wood structures to seismic loadings.

    • Develop rapid screening techniques to evaluate building performance in earthquakes
    • Seismic evaluation of schools, colleges and critical facilities in Oregon

    Rakesh Gupta, 541-737-4223; [email protected]
    Gupta is a professor of wood science whose work focuses on creating wood structures that can better withstand nature’s violent forces, including earthquakes, hurricanes,  and wind storms. He also analyzes wooden structures that have been destroyed to ascertain the cause of their destruction.

    • Creating wood structures that can withstand earthquakes and other hazards
    • Analyzing the reason for collapse and/or destruction of wooden structures.

    Andrew Meigs, 541-737-1214; [email protected] 
    Meigs, a geoscientist who heads the geology program at OSU, studies structural geology and the geology of earthquakes, and has conducted research on faults in Alaska, the Pacific Northwest, the Los Angeles basin and South America.

    • Structural geology
    • The geology of earthquakes
    • Tectonics and topography


    Dan Cox, 541-737-3631 (or 541-737-4934); [email protected]
    Cox is a professor of coastal and ocean engineering at OSU, where he studies the impact of tsunamis and ocean waves on coastal structures. He can discuss how tsunamis vary in “behavior” as the approach coastal areas, depending on terrain, and the resulting damage they may induce.

    • Design and performance of coastal structures, particularly during tsunamis
    • Effect of near-shore ocean terrain on tsunami “behavior”

    Harry Yeh, 541-737-8057 (or 541-737-4934); [email protected]
    Yeh holds the Miles Lowell and Margaret Watt Edwards Distinguished Chair in Engineering at OSU, where he is a leading international expert on tsunamis. He can discuss the processes by which earthquakes trigger tsunamis, recent major events around the world, and tsunami hazard mitigation.

    • The mechanics of tsunamis
    • Major tsunamis around the world
    • Tsunami hazard mitigation

    Solomon Yim, 541-737-6894 (or 541-737-4934); [email protected]
    Yim is a professor of structural and ocean engineering and can discuss new efforts at constructing building, bridges and other structures that can withstand the forces of tsunamis.

    • The destructive power of tsunamis
    • Building more tsunami-resistant structures
    • Storm surge and earthquake impacts on ocean waves.

    Earthquake/Tsunami Preparedness and Public Education

    Patrick Corcoran, 541-325-8573; [email protected]
    Corcoran is a coastal hazards outreach specialist for Oregon Sea Grant, based at OSU. In addition to his work with the NOAA Coastal Storms Program, Corcoran works with coastal community leaders on earthquake and tsunami preparation and education.

    • Community preparation for earthquakes and tsunamis
    • Community education for earthquakes and tsunamis
    • Effects of earthquakes, tsunamis and coastal storms on communities

    Lori Cramer, 541-737-5382[email protected]
    Cramer is a sociologist who studies natural resource-dependent communities and how they are affected by social problems, environmental risks and other issues. She has looked at the impacts of nuclear waste and hazardous waste facilities on rural communities, and is studying the effects of recent tsunami warnings on vulnerable populations at the Oregon coast.

    • Natural resource-dependent and rural Oregon communities
    • Community education for earthquakes and tsunamis
    • Communication and education for vulnerable populations in rural areas during disasters