Alexandria, VA - When individuals die in a natural disaster or property damage is costly, can anyone be blamed? After the 2012 conviction of six Italian geoscientists on manslaughter charges related to communication about the hazards prior to the L'Aquila earthquake in 2009, scientists worldwide are keen to understand the risks of their hazards research.
EARTH Magazine investigates the complicated and often nuanced risks scientists face in hazard research. From the meaning of liability -- defined on an international spectrum -- to the legal lessons learned from climate scientists, researching the point at which Earth's hazards impact society's economic or morbidity appraisals requires a balancing act from scientists.
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The American Geosciences Institute is a nonprofit federation of 50 geoscientific and professional associations that represents more than 250,000 geologists, geophysicists and other earth scientists. Founded in 1948, AGI provides information services to geoscientists, serves as a voice of shared interests in the profession, plays a major role in strengthening geoscience education, and strives to increase public awareness of the vital role the geosciences play in society's use of resources, resiliency to natural hazards, and interaction with the environment.