Committee Questionnaire

At the request of the National Science Foundation, the National Research Council is conducting a study that will assess (1) the state of the art of the multidisciplinary field of Earth surface processes, (2) the fundamental research questions in the future for the field, and (3) the challenges and opportunities facing the research community and the nation in answering these questions. The committee is addressing the task by considering research on the dynamic biological, chemical, physical, and human processes, interactions, and feedback mechanisms that affect the shape of Earth’s surface across a range of spatial and temporal scales, from continental interiors to the oceans, and from polar to equatorial regions. The committee is dedicated to generating a report that will be used by a wide audience including policy makers, agency managers, scientists from many disciplines, and society.

The report will have the greatest impact on future research if it has strong input from a broad spectrum of the interested community. During its few scheduled study meetings, the committee cannot hear from all of the many interested individuals who have important input to this topic, so the committee seeks your help in the form of written contributions to the following set of questions:

  1. What have been the four most significant conceptual and/or technological advances in Earth surface processes in the last 15 years?

  2. What are two emergent and fundamental questions that Earth surface processes research can address?

  3. What challenges (organizational, administrative, conceptual, philosophical, etc.) exist in conducting the research needed to answer the fundamental questions identified in Question 2?


Teofilo Abrajano, NSF

Rafael L. Bras, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Oliver Chadwick, University of California, Santa Barbara

Terry Chapin, University of Alaska

Michael Church, University of British Columbia

Louis Derry, Cornell University

Martin Doyle, University of North Carolina

Tom Drake, Office of Naval Research

Michael Ellis, NSF

Jon Foley, University of Wisconsin

Christian France-Lanord, CNRS-Nancy, France

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