IAVCEI Guidelines on the roles and responsibilities of scientists involved in volcanic hazard evaluation, risk mitigation, and crisis response

The International Association for Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth’s Interior (IAVCEI), as the representative international association of scientists working on volcanic hazard evaluations and risk mitigation, promotes sustained open discussion amongst the scientific community on many relevant issues, including:

  • how to best understand and forecast volcanic activity, the associated hazards, and contribute to risk evaluations; • the appropriate roles and responsibilities of scientists prior to, during and after crises;
  • the nature of scientists’ relationships with government authorities, populations at risk, and the media;
  • the manner and extent of involvement of scientists in processes that eventually lead authorities to make decisions, the extent of the liability or vulnerability of scientists to outcomes of these decisions, and the way that scientists’ input may be perceived and judged by others;
  • the role of national and local culture and perception of risk in both mitigation policy and communication of hazard and risk; • the effectiveness of descriptions of forecasted volcanic phenomena and associated hazards, and of their related uncertainties;
  • how to best increase the awareness, preparedness and empowerment of individuals, and society as a whole, in order to reduce the impact of volcanic phenomena on society.

In particular, IAVCEI, as a modern learned society wants to offer through its media (e.g. its website, archives, documents, recommendation notes) informative material, which can help members and others to fulfill these roles and responsibilities. In particular, scientists have a role in protecting populations and societies from harm due to volcanic phenomena, within the context of, and being cognizant of, diverse cultural needs and settings. Furthermore, IAVCEI wants to develop frameworks within which relationships and communication with local communities, media and authorities can be fostered and improved.

Download the Guidelines