Western Geographic Science Center



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Nathan Wood
Research Geographer
Portland, OR
nwood@usgs.gov
503-251-3291
Detailed Professional Page: https://profile.usgs.gov/nwood
Project Skills: Hazards - Community vulnerability assessments to tsunamis, volcanic lahars, hurricane storm surge, coastal storms, and sea level rise
Climate Change - Assessing future community vulnerability to climate-change-enhanced natural hazards (e.g., storm surge, erosion)
Land Use/Land Cover Studies - Use of landcover data for approximating community vulnerabilityto natural hazards
Tools and Techniques - Statistical approaches for summarizing data
GIS - Spatial analysis for vulnerability research
Geographic Regions: Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, Florida.
Current/Recent Projects: Detailed project information can be found at  [http://geography.wr.usgs.gov/science/vulnerability/index.htm].

1) Community vulnerability to tsunamis: Past research has included USGS reports summarizing variations in community exposure to tsunamis in Hawaii, Oregon, and Washington and journal articles describing various geospatial techniques to assess societal vulnerability to tsunamis. Wood was also a committee member for a National Research Council review of the nation's tsunami warning system and national preparedness for tsunamis. Current research focuses on developing geospatial approaches to characterize pedestrian evacuations from tsunamis and to develop societal-risk metrics for tsunamis.

2) Community vulnerability to climate change and coastal storms: Research focuses on assessing current and future community vulnerability to coastal storms, sea level rise due to climate change, and increasing urbanization of hazard-prone areas. Past research has focused on Sarasota County (Florida) and Kauai Island (Hawaii). Current research focuses on community vulnerability on the Oregon and Washington coast to climate-change-enhanced coastal erosion in collaboration with Oregon State University, via a grant from the NOAA Climate Change Program.

3) Community vulnerability to volcano hazards: Research focuses on assessing community vulnerability to volcanic hazards, such as lahars, in the Cascade Range. Research efforts also include development of societal-exposure metrics for national volcano monitoring and preparation of a textbook on volcano-hydrologic processes with USGS colleagues in the Volcano Hazards Program
Collaborations: Community vulnerability to tsunamis: Hawaii State Civil Defense, Hawaii Office of Planning, Pacific Disaster Center, The Pennsylvania State University, the University of Oregon, and the University of South Carolina, Washington State Emergency Management Division, Washington State/Local Tsunami Working Group, Hawaii Tsunami Technical Review Committee, National Research Council, Oregon Sea Grant, Cascadia Region Earthquake Workgroup, Pacific Risk Management 'Ohana

Community vulnerability to sea-level rise and coastal storms: The Pennsylvania State University, Oregon State University, Oregon Sea Grant, NOAA Climate Change Program

Community vulnerability to volcano hazards: Washington State Emergency Management
Recent Publications: Wood, N., Ratliff, J., and Peters, J., 2013. Community exposure to tsunami hazards in California. U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2012-5222, iv, 49 p.http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2012/5222/.

Mathie, A., and Wood, N., 2013. Residential and service-population exposure to multiple natural hazards in the Mount Hood region of Clackamas County, Oregon. U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2013-1073, iv, 48 p.http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2013/1073/.

Wood, N., and Schmidtlein, M., 2013, Community variations in population exposure to near-field tsunami hazards as a function of pedestrian travel time to safety, Natural Hazards, 65 (3): 1603-1628http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11069-012-0434-8.

Coletti, A., Howe, P., Yarnal, B., and Wood, N., 2013, A support system for assessing local vulnerability to weather and climate, Natural Hazards, 65 (1): 999-1008http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11069-012-0366-3.http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11069-012-0366-3

Howe, P., Yarnal, B., Coletti, A., and Wood, N., 2013, The participatory vulnerability scoping diagram - deliberative risk ranking for community water systems, Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 103 (2), 343-352.http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00045608.2013.754673#.Uad9SHWHJ8E.

Wood, N., and Schmidtlein, M., 2012, Anisotropic path modeling to assess pedestrian-evacuation potential from Cascadia-related tsunamis in the US Pacific Northwest. Springer , 26 p.http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11069-011-9994-2.

Wood, N., and Ratliff, J., 2011. Population and business exposure to twenty scenario earthquakes in the State of Washington. U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2011-1016, v, 13 p.http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2011/1016/.

Wood, N., 2011. Understanding risk and resilience to natural hazards. U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2011-3008, 2 p.http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2011/3008/.

Wood, N., 2011, California's tsunami threat--Japan's disaster serves as a reminder to the West Coast to be prepared, Los Angeles Times, Opinion-Editorial section, March 17, 2011, A17http://articles.latimes.com/2011/mar/17/opinion/la-oe-woods-tsunami-20110317.

Frazier, T. G., Wood, N., Yarnal, B., Stakeholder perspectives on land-use strategies for adapting to climate-change-enhanced coastal hazards: Sarasota, Florida, Applied Geography (2010), doi:10.1016/j.apgeog.2010.05.007

Frazier, T., Wood, N., Yarnal, B., Bauer, D., Influence of potential sea level rise on societal vulnerability to hurricane storm-surge hazards, Sarasota County, Florida, Applied Geography (2010), doi:10.1016/j.apgeog.2010.05.005

Baron, H., Wood, N., Ruggiero, P., Allan, J., and Corcoran, P., 2010, Assessing societal vulnerability of U.S. Pacific Northwest communities to storm-induced coastal change, Proceedings of The Coastal Society Annual Meeting, June 7-11, 2010, Wilmington, NC, 5 p.

Wood, N., Burton, C., and Cutter, S., 2010, Community variations in social vulnerability to Cascadia-related tsunamis in the U.S. Pacific Northwest, Natural Hazards, 52(2), 369-389

Frazier, T., Wood, N., and Yarnal, B., 2009, A framework for using GIS and stakeholder input to assess vulnerability to coastal-inundation hazards: a case study from Sarasota County, Florida, In U. Paleo (ed.), Building safer communities—risk governance, spatial planning and responses to natural hazards, NATO Science for Peace and Security Series, 58, Amsterdam: IOS Press, pp. 226-245.

Wood, N., and Soulard, C., 2009, Community exposure to lahar hazards from Mount Rainier, Washington: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2009-5211, 26 p.  [http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2009/5211/].

Wood, N., and Soulard, C., 2009, Variations in population exposure and sensitivity to lahar hazards from Mount Rainier, Washington, Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research 188, 367–378.

Wood, N., 2009, Tsunami exposure estimation with land-cover data: Oregon and the Cascadia subduction zone, Applied Geography 29, 158-170.

Wood, N., and Soulard, C., 2008, Variations in community exposure and sensitivity to tsunami hazards on the open-ocean and Strait of Juan de Fuca coasts of Washington: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2008-5004, 34 p.  [http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2008/5004/].

Wood, N., 2007, Variations in community exposure and sensitivity to tsunami hazards in Oregon: Reston, Va., USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2007-5283, 43 p.  [http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2007/5283/].

Wood, N., Church, A., Frazier, T., and B. Yarnal, 2007, Variations in community exposure and sensitivity to tsunami hazards in the State of Hawai`i: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigation Report 2007-5208, 42 p. [http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2007/5208/]  [http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2007/5208/].

Wood, N., and Hine, A., 2007, Spatial trends in marsh sediment deposition within a microtidal creek system, Waccasassa Bay, Florida, Journal of Coastal Research, 23 (4): p. 823 ? 833.

Bernknopf, R., Rabinovici, S., Wood, N. and Dinitz, L., 2006, The influence of hazard models on GIS-based regional risk assessments and mitigation policies, International Journal of Risk Assessment and Management, 6 (4/5/6), 369 ? 387.

Academic Background: Oregon State University, Geography, Ph.D., 2002
University of South Florida, Marine Science, M.S., 1996
Duke University, Geology, B.S., 1992