Tiziana Rossetto is a Professor in Earthquake Engineering in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering (CEGE) at UCL where she directs the Earthquake and People Interaction Centre (EPICentre, www.epicentreonline.com ). EPICentre was founded by Tiziana in 2007 with seed funds from a highly competitive UK Research Council Grant called Challenging Engineering, and has grown to become the largest earthquake engineering research centre in the UK. Since joining UCL in December 2004 Prof. Rossetto has been PI on research grants totalling £6.3M, and Co-I on grants worth £0.74M. She set up the MSc in Earthquake Engineering with Disaster management and co-directed the UCL Engineering Doctorate Centre in Urban Sustainability and Resilience.
Tiziana is acknowledged in the earthquake engineering community as an expert in the assessment of the seismic vulnerability of buildings. However, a key aspect of her research is to apply earthquake engineering knowledge to other disciplines. For example, one of her most innovative projects involves collaboration with Psychologists to look at the perception of earthquake risk, in order to understand why people who live in seismic areas do little or nothing to prepare for future events and, with this knowledge, design an intervention strategy to increase the uptake of mitigation actions.
Tiziana was recently awarded a European Research Council grant for her project URBAN WAVES, which aims to develop new science and techniques to holistically evaluate earthquake and tsunami risks and provide engineering guidance for their effective mitigation. To date,the tsunami runup equations and fragility curves she has derived have been used by Arup and Willis Reinsurance in tsunami risk analyses for UK and Japanese sites, respectively. The URBAN WAVES project stems directly from a successful collaboration with HR Wallingford (UK leading consultancy in coastal engineering) for the design and testing of a new tsunami generator that is unique worldwide for its capability of long wave and trough-led wave generation. She is currently further developing this exceptional experimental facility and is investigating the impact of tsunami waves on sea defence structures and on buildings onshore. Prof. Rossetto is a strong advocate for earthquake engineering and is active in several professional institutions in the UK. She is currently Chair ex-officio of the UK Earthquake Engineering Field Investigation Team (EEFIT, Institution of Structural Engineers), Vice-Chair of the Society of Earthquake and Civil Engineering Dynamics (SECED, learned society of the Institution of Civil Engineers), committee member of the Research and Innovation panel of the Institution of Civil Engineers, and sits on the British Standards Institute Committee for the application of the European Seismic Code (EC8). She was invited to speak to the UK Parliament and has participated in six post-earthquake missions, led the first ever earthquake reconstruction investigation mission by EEFIT. She is also leading discussions to establish an Earthquake Reconnaissance Alliance that will link international bodies in the field of earthquake reconnaissance. The aim is to change the role of expert reconnaissance so that it contributes to and influences recovery and reconstruction processes.