Priority research areas for the solid earth sciences were recently identified by two blue-ribbon panels. Each suggested specific areas where funds should be targeted for rapid advances in expanding our knowledge of the earth and for long-term payoffs both in basic research and in training the next generation of earth scientists.
In its report released last week, the Research Briefing Panel on the Solid Earth Sciences identified five priority research topics. In a report issued earlier this year, the Committee on Opportunities for Research in the Geological Sciences selected for top billing eight such research areas. The common scientific thread running through both reports: More research is needed on the structure, composition, and evolution of the continental lithosphere and on the dynamics of tectonic processes.