Democratizing earthquake predictability research: introducing the RichterX platform
- Journal Article
Predictability of earthquakes has been vigorously debated in the last decades with the dominant -albeit contested -view being that earthquakes are inherently unpredictable. The absence of a framework to rigorously evaluate earthquake predictions has led to prediction efforts being viewed with scepticism. Consequently, funding for earthquake prediction has dried out and the community has shifted its focus towards earthquake forecasting. The field has benefited from collaborative efforts to organize prospective earthquake forecasting contests by introducing protocols, model formats and rigorous tests. However, these regulations have also created a barrier to entry. Methods that do not share the assumptions of the testing protocols, or whose outputs are not compatible with the contest format, can not be accommodated. In addition, the results of the contests are communicated via a suite of consistency and pair-wise tests that are often difficult to interpret for those not well versed in statistical inference. Due to these limiting factors, while scientific output in earthquake seismology has been on the rise, participation in such earthquake forecasting contests has remained rather limited. In order to revive earthquake predictability research and encourage wide-scale participation, here we introduce a global earthquake prediction platform by the name RichterX. The platform allows for testing of any earthquake prediction in a user-defined magnitude, space, time window anywhere on the globe. Predictions are assigned a reference probability based on a rigorously tested real-time global statistical earthquake forecasting model. In this way, we are able to accommodate methods issuing alarm based predictions as well as probabilistic earthquake forecasting models. We formulate two metrics to evaluate the participants’ predictive skill and demonstrate their consistency through synthetic tests. Show more
Journal / seriesThe European Physical Journal Special Topics
Pages / Article No.
Organisational unit03738 - Sornette, Didier (emeritus) / Sornette, Didier (emeritus)
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