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Media Advisory 10-011

NSF Webcast: Learning from Haiti

Geophysicist, structural engineer and social scientists--recently returned from the site of the earthquake disaster--share experiences and observations

Image for Haiti webcast
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Video from the Learning from Haiti webcast, April 27, 2010

April 19, 2010

This material is available primarily for archival purposes. Telephone numbers or other contact information may be out of date; please see current contact information at media contacts.

Every disaster leaves critical clues in its wake--not only about its cause, but also about how to protect lives in future emergencies.  Following the Jan. 12, 2010, earthquake in Haiti, researchers were on site within days to gather such clues before they were lost forever to  weather, recovery and reconstruction.

On Tuesday, April 27, 2010, at 2:00 PM EDT, NSF will host a webcast featuring three of those researchers--geophysicist Eric Calais of Purdue University, structural engineer Reginald DesRoches of Georgia Tech, and social scientist Liesel Ritchie of the Natural Hazards Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder--to discuss their work in Haiti and around the world. They will be joined by social scientist Dennis Wenger, who will discuss how U.S. and global agencies use disaster research to save lives.

Who:Geophysicist Eric Calais, Purdue University
Structural engineer Reginald DesRoches, Georgia Institute of Technology
Social scientist Liesel Ritchie, Natural Hazards Center, University of Colorado at Boulder
Social scientist Dennis Wenger, National Science Foundation

What:A discussion on rapid-response research around the world, including preliminary observations and findings from the earthquake disaster in Haiti. Learn more about the speakers, and see images and video from their work, at


Tuesday, April 27, 2010, at 2:00 PM EDT

Where:Join the webcast at (Note: the URL will only be live during the event.) No username or password will be required.

The webcast is open to the public. Questions are welcome and should be directed to The phone line will be open to reporters only. Reporters can contact Josh Chamot ( for the call-in number and passcode.


Media Contacts
Joshua A. Chamot, NSF, (703) 292-7730, email:

The U.S. National Science Foundation propels the nation forward by advancing fundamental research in all fields of science and engineering. NSF supports research and people by providing facilities, instruments and funding to support their ingenuity and sustain the U.S. as a global leader in research and innovation. With a fiscal year 2023 budget of $9.5 billion, NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 40,000 competitive proposals and makes about 11,000 new awards. Those awards include support for cooperative research with industry, Arctic and Antarctic research and operations, and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

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