The EMSC history


The European-Mediterranean region is seismically active and prone to destructive earthquakes. To protect the population and assess the earthquake impact, a rapid determination of earthquake parameters is essential, but the level of that information across the Euro-Mediterranean region at the time is very heterogeneous and not always easily accessible. Following the recommendation of the European Seismological Commission (ESC), the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre is founded.


The EMSC starts its operations at the Institut de physique du globe de Strasbourg (IPGS). Since then, its main activities have been the rapid determination of the earthquake location and magnitude, as well as the dissemination of earthquake information and the promotion of seismological research.


The EMSC receives its statutes: the EMSC is formally recognized as an international, non-governmental, and non-profit association.

Open Partial Agreement (OPA) of the Council of Europe

The EMSC is charged by the Council of Europe (CoE) to provide seismic alerts in the framework of the OPA on the prevention of, protection against, and organisation of relief in major natural and technological disasters. The appointment with the CoE stops in 2015, following the withdrawal of France from the OPA.

Headquarter relocation

The statutes are modified after an Extraordinary Assembly held in Rome, Italy. The EMSC headquarter is moved to the Laboratoire de Détection et de Géophysique (LDG) of the Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique (CEA) in Bruyères-le-Châtel (Essonne, France).

Becoming mobile-friendly

The EMSC becomes mobile-friendly by designing its website for the small screens of smartphones too. A more convenient surfing experience, at everyone’s fingertips.

The EMSC is on Twitter!

The official EMSC Twitter robot @LastQuake is developed to automatically publish rapid, reliable earthquake information for the general public as soon as they become available to the EMSC headquarter.

LastQuake, the app

The EMSC releases its smartphone app, LastQuake, dedicated to the rapid dissemination of earthquake information and the massive crowdsourcing of eyewitnesses' experiences (felt reports, geo-located pics, comments) immediately after violent shaking.

Entering EPOS

The EMSC becomes a member of EPOS, a consortium of national and trans-national research infrastructures that promotes the access, use, and re-use of multidisciplinary solid Earth science data, data products, and services.

LastQuake is getting popular!

The LastQuake app reaches 200’000 installs worldwide. When an earthquake strikes, more users around the world turn to LastQuake to seek earthquake information and share their experience.

A new mobile experience

The EMSC redesigns its mobile website to better serve its visitors, with a specific focus on the earthquake eyewitnesses and the general public.

Twitter robot renewal

The @LastQuake Twitter robot is renewed to better tailor the information to its followers and to make the most of the EMSC’s most recently-developed services.