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An evaluation of Chinese annual earthquake predictions, 1990–1998

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 July 2016

Yaolin Shi*
Affiliation:
University of Science and Technology of China and Academica Sinica
Jie Liu*
Affiliation:
University of Science and Technology of China and Academica Sinica
Guomin Zhang*
Affiliation:
China Seismological Bureau
*
1Postal address: Graduate School, University of Science and Technology, Beijing 100039, China. Email: shiyl@sun.ihep.ac.cn
2Postal address: Center for Analysis and Prediction, China Seismological Bureau, Beijing 100036, China.
2Postal address: Center for Analysis and Prediction, China Seismological Bureau, Beijing 100036, China.

Abstract

The annual earthquake predictions of the China Seismological Bureau (CSB) are evaluated by means of an R score (an R score is approximately 0 for completely random guesses, and approximately 1 for completely successful predictions). The average R score of the annual predictions in China in the period 1990–1998 is about 0.184, significantly larger than 0.0. However, background seismicity is higher in seismically active regions. If a ‘random guess' prediction is chosen to be proportional to the background seismicity, the expected R score is 0.123, and the nine-year mean R score of 0.184 as observed is only marginally higher than this background value. Monte Carlo tests indicate that the probability of attaining an R score of actual prediction by background seismicity based on random guess is about . It is concluded that earthquake prediction in China is still in a very preliminary stage, barely above a pure chance level.

MSC classification

Type
Models and statistics in seismology
Copyright
Copyright © Applied Probability Trust 2001 

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