Tom Parsons

I conduct research aimed at improving our ability to forecast hazardous events like earthquakes and tsunamis. Specifically, I study how earthquakes trigger others, how crustal movements cause earthquake stresses, and how to convert geologic observations of earthquake and tsunami processes into quantitative forecasts of use to planners, insurers, and builders.



1992 – Ph.D. in Geophysics, Stanford University

1990 – M.S. in Geophysics, Stanford University

1988 – B.S. in Applied Geophysics, UCLA


1994-Present: Research Geophysicist, U. S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, CA

1992-1994: National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow

Honors and Awards

Senior Scientist (ST): 1/15

Fellow American Geophysical Union, Elected 1/12

Fulbright Mutual Educational Exchange Grant USA-Greece: 2007-2008

Alumni Pillar of Achievement: Golden West College Outstanding Alumni Award (10/07)

Fellow Geological Society of America, Elected 10/97

Shoemaker Communication Award (10/00)

National Association of Government Communicators Gold Screen Award (12/00)

National Research Council Post-Doctoral Fellow (8/92)

Service to the Scientific Community

Editor, AGU Advances, 2019-present

Editor in Chief, Journal of Geophysical Research, Solid Earth, 2009-2015

Editor in Chief, Tectonophysics, 2007-2009

Editorial Board, Tectonophysics, 2005-2007

Editorial Board, Geology, 1995-2000, 2005-2008

Member: Executive Committee, Working Group on California Earthquake Probabilities 2005-present

Member: SCEC Planning Committee, 2007-2009