Expert Reports

These reports are unique, authoritative expert evaluations. Each report is produced by a committee of experts selected by the Academy to address a particular statement of task and is subject to a rigorous, independent peer review.

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Characterization, Modeling, Monitoring, and Remediation of Fractured Rock (2015)

Characterizing and modeling fluid flow through fractured rock is vital to limiting the spread of chemical contaminants through rock features; for understanding where reservoirs of petroleum, water, or geothermal resources may form; and for engineering stable and resilient underground infrastructure. Over the past twenty years there have been significant advances in abilities to model and characterize these pathways, but significant challenge... More >>

Advancing Land Change Modeling: Opportunities and Research Requirements (2013)

Urban development, agriculture, and energy production are just a few of the ways that human activities are continually changing and reshaping the Earth’s surface. Land-change models (LCMs) are important tools for understanding and managing present and future landscape conditions, from an individual parcel of land in a city to the vast expanses of forests around the world. A recent explosion in the number and types of land observations, mode... More >>

Preparing the Next Generation of Earth Scientists: An Examination of Federal Education and Training Programs (2013)

Federal agencies play a key role in educating the next generation of earth scientists, offering programs that attract students to the field, support them through formal education, or provide training for an earth science career. The report examines 25 federal earth science education programs, describes ways to evaluate the success of these programs, and identifies opportunities for leveraging federal education resources. A centerpiece of th... More >>

Report in Brief

Emerging Workforce Trends in the U.S. Energy and Mining Industries: A Call to Action (2013)

Access to energy and mineral resources is essential to support the United States' high standard of living, economy, and security. Energy in the U.S. comes from a variety of sources, including fossil fuels (oil, natural gas, and coal), nuclear energy, and renewable sources (solar, wind, and geothermal). Nonfuel minerals are necessary for the existence and operation of products and services used by people every day and are provided by the minin... More >>

Report in Brief

Underground Engineering for Sustainable Urban Development (2013)

Humans have long relied on underground space for the placement of physical structures that allow our cities and developed areas to function safely. These include building foundations, underground utilities (e.g., power, gas, communications, waste management), transportation (e.g., roads and highways, subways, freight and passenger rail) and their supporting facilities. However, underground infrastructure is rarely engineered in coordination wit... More >>