Edinburgh Seismic Research

Board, Mission and Constitution


University of Edinburgh

Dr. Andrew Curtis (ESR Director)
Prof. John Underhill
British Geological Survey

Prof. Xiang Yang Li
Dr. Mark Chapman
Heriot-Watt University

Prof. Colin MacBeth
Dr. Ingo Pecher

Edinburgh Seismic research is the largest group of academic researchers in the field of active source seismology in the UK, and is one of the largest in Europe. This page sets out its Mission statement and Constitution.


Edinburgh Seismic Research (henceforth, ‘ESR’) exists to further the interests of all of the seismics-related research groups (henceforth, ‘Groups’) represented on the Board. Its mission is to:

  • Enhance and Market the reputation of seismic research across all Groups.
  • Expand the scope and quality of seismic research in Edinburgh.
  • Expand or maintain numbers of staff and students engaged in seismic research in Edinburgh.
  • Investigate new strategic directions for seismic research across Edinburgh.


General Principles

Edinburgh Seismic Research (henceforth, ‘ESR’) exists to further the interests of all of the seismics-related research groups (henceforth, ‘Groups’) represented by the Board, in line with the Mission statement. It is managed by a Board with a Director. Each member of ESR, and particularly the Board and Director, should act according to the following principles:

  • When acting on behalf of ESR, all Board members agree to act in the interests of all Groups, without partisan bias, and without intra-Group competition.
  • Board members will represent ESR on policy as agreed by the Board, and will not represent ESR outside of such policy. The Policy, defined below, sets out currently active policies of ESR.
  • Board members will always make clear in any communication (conversations, talks, written documents, emails, etc.) when they are acting on behalf of ESR, and when they are acting on behalf of themselves or other parties, particularly their own research groups. It is the responsibility of the Board member to avoid doubt in this regard at all times.


Director and Board Members

  • The Director must be a Board member, and must be elected biennially by an 80% majority vote of Board members. Directorship is generally expected to rotate between institutions, but this need not be adhered to if the Board elects ‘out-of-turn’ candidates. If an 80% majority can not be achieved, the current Director will continue to direct ESR until such time as an 80% majority is attained.
  • All Board members must agree to the principles and mechanisms in this constitution, and must indicate so by signing a copy of the constitution which will be kept on record.
  • New Board members can be nominated at any time, by a minimum of two current Board members from two different institutions. The nomination must either be accepted by 80% majority vote of the Board, or rejected, at the first subsequent Board meeting.

Board Meetings

  • Board meetings will be held at least biannually around June and December. Additional Board meetings can be convened for more pressing issues, at the agreement of a majority of Board members.
  • The Board will be deemed quorate if at least 70% of Board members are in attendance.

Developing Policy

  • Statements of policy can be established (made active) or revoked at any time, by 80% majority vote.
  • The list of all active policy statements constitutes the ‘Policy’ of ESR.

Infringements and Dismissal

  • Any infringement of the Constitution by any Board member would constitute grounds for dismissal from the Board.
  • Dismissal of a Board member from the Board requires a 70% majority vote of the remainder of the Board.

Changing the Constitution

  • This Constitution can be amended by an 80% majority agreement to accept draft text. Such draft text must be submitted to the Board in either May or November of each year, and must be discussed and either ratified or rejected by the Board within 3 months of receipt. Revisions of draft text must be resubmitted as a normal submission.


  • Board members are free to establish projects that do not fall under ESR at any time, but can not use the name or reputation of ESR in connection either with such projects, or with applications for funding for such projects. Such projects are referred to as “non-ESR Projects”.
  • Board members are free, either jointly or in any combination (including individually), to establish projects under ESR at any time, using ESR reputation and promotional vehicles (name, brand, web page, etc.) in connection with such projects or funding proposals for such projects. Such projects are referred to as “ESR Projects”.
  • Knowledge from all ESR Projects will be shared freely amongst ESR members, in confidence if required (the need for confidentiality must be stated before exposure), using non-disclosure agreements (NDA’s) if necessary.
  • Assignment of intellectual property arising from ESR Projects will be discussed and agreed at ESR Board meetings (under NDA if necessary), decided purely on the basis of inventorship.