With respect to the Working Programme, most of the Tasks have been fully accomplished. Only the last one was not fully accomplished, yet, due to the reasons explained before.

The main results have been summarised in the Introduction. Here, some comments on the following aspects will be proposed: difficulties, procedure and web site.


The project met some difficulties, partly foreseen from the beginning, partly not.

First of all, not all current parametric catalogues are published or public; the supporting data are even less public than the catalogues. This means that some of these datasets were released to the project under specific restrictions concerning the dissemination.

Second, most current catalogues are still being upgraded according to the criteria described in the introduction, which the project wanted to avoid. This means that some input PEC adopted by BEECD underwent major changes during the project (see the cases of Greece, Italy, etc.), putting the project in front of a difficult dilemma:

  • to recompile the Working File and perform the related analysis several times,
  • or to be accused of ignoring updated information.

    The compromise solution was to stick to the adopted input PEC as a starting point and to adopt the roots provided by the new catalogues as "new roots" for re-determining the parameters.

    Third, parallel initiatives, such as some GSHAP sub-projects, though in principle could benefit from the output of this project, urged for more rapid solutions. This actually resulted in duplication of efforts and conflicting schedules and methodologies; moreover, this partly unavoidable conflict was complicated by the fact that part of the GSHAP investigators were BEECD partners and collaborators at the same time.

    Fourth, the lack of public consensus among the European scientific community, including the project partners, about what methods are to be preferred for determining earthquake parameters from macroseismic data put the project leader in front of another dilemma:

  • to make a choice whatever, in order to get parameters and complete the work, though it might have suffered of lack of consensus afterwards, or
  • to get the procedures ready, keep the engine hot and wait for a sufficiently agreed determination procedure.

    The choice was the second one, as this project did not aimed producing another, scarcely reliable European earthquake catalogue.

    Some of these problems have scientific roots: for instance, it is a matter of fact that these topics underwent large development in the last years, due to the opportunity of handling a large number of data, which requires time for tests and agreement.

    On the other hand, many others are typical problems of the making of Europe. The conflict is between the need for European tools (databases and related elaborations) and the fact that seismologists and data compilers are mainly used to work on a national basis; therefore, the need for a consensus at European level is not a priority, yet.


    An ideal procedure would have required:

  • to agree and freeze national catalogue at a fixed date
  • to use the existing catalogues as working boxes, with the only scope of retrieving the supporting datasets (roots), and to throw away the current parameters
  • to put together the roots and select the best ones
  • to agree on determination procedures and to determine the new parameters according to them
  • to give birth to the comprehensive, European catalogue to become as much representative to make the national catalogues progressively loosing their importance, and to be implemented thereafter according to a commonly adopted procedure.

    BEECD only partly succeeded following this way. However, the already mentioned need of facing the release of new catalogues during the project partially stimulating the calibration of the upgrading procedure briefly described at Task 4:

  • freeze the initial catalogue, database and determination procedures
  • get a new earthquake study: give root class and compare with the corresponding, ruling one
  • if the new root is better, adopt it
  • determine the new parameters and adopt them

    which can be followed hereafter. By the way, this procedure can be easily applied to all changes performed, after their publication, to the PEC adopted as input, eliminating most of the heavy "dark-side" of the European catalogues.

    The website

    Most of the material of the project - at least the public material - is being made available, with the authors agreement, on the server "emidius", run as a joint venture between Istituto di Ricerca sul Rischio Sismico and Istituto per le Tecnologie Informatiche Multimediali, CNR, Italy. The address is

    The logical scheme of the web site is similar to the one, also hosted by "emidius", which makes the Italian catalogue and macroseismic dataset compiled in the frame of Gruppo Nazionale per la Difesa dai Terremoti available to public (

    The implementation of the parametric European Catalogue of Damaging Earthquakes (EuCaDE) will be performed on the web site in an interactive way, searching the consensus of the partners and of the national compilers by means of this web site.

    However, to complete the work initiated for the strong earthquakes and to produce the EuCaDE it is necessary that input catalogues and new roots are made available free of restrictions by the owners of these data. The same holds, of course, also for completing the work related to the time windows before 1400 and after 1900.