Frequently Asked Questions

In September 2011, the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG) and the Environmental and Engineering Geophysical Society (EEGS) began talks about a possible merger between the two organizations. The complexity of the decision has surely left some interested parties wondering where the decision is now and what's next in the process. Many relevant questions pertaining to the decision and their corresponding answers have been listed below. If your question is not addressed below, feel free to contact EEGS at staff@eegs.org.

Why are SEG and EEGS discussing the possibility of a merger?  What unique benefits would each organization bring to a possible merger? 
What are SEG's specific interests in considering a merger? What will happen if both Societies approve moving forward with a merger? 
What are EEGS's specific interests in considering a merger?  How would near surface planning and activities be governed? 
In the event of a merger, how would membership dues change?  In the event of a merger, what would happen to the EEGS Annual Meeting, SAGEEP? 
How long has a merger between societies been considered? In the event of a merger, what would happen to the EEGS Journal, JEEG? 
How is each organization being represented in merger talks? In the event of a merger, what would happen to the EEGS ePublication, FastTIMES? 
What decisions have been made at this point?  How can I express my opinion? 
What are SEG and EEGS doing now to further investigate a possible merger?   
 
Why are SEG and EEGS discussing the possibility of a merger?
The idea to consider a merger was driven by EEGS and SEG volunteers who are members of both societies. The purpose of the ongoing assessment by these volunteers is to evaluate how EEGS and SEG could best pool resources for the benefit of the near surface community.

What are SEG's specific interests in considering a merger?
SEG's mission is to "promote the science of exploration geophysics and related fields, and to foster the common scientific interests of geophysicists" irrespective of the industry they support. Realizing that it was under-serving the growing global community of near surface members, SEG leadership approved a near surface strategic plan in mid-2010. Many SEG Sections and Associated Societies, such as SEG Japan and the German Geophysical Society, have very active near surface programs that would benefit from broader interaction with the global community. John Bradford spearheaded an SEG board task force to map out how the SEG could act on its near surface strategy. The task force's first step was to see how best to work collaboratively with EEGS. This lead to the creation of the SEG-EEGS Collaboration Task Force in mid 2011.

What are EEGS's specific interests in considering a merger?
EEGS has accomplished much since 1992 and built a professional home for many near surface geophysicists. EEGS leadership realizes that, as the relevance of our profession to the engineering and environmental challenges facing society increases, there is so much more that could be done to promote the practice of near surface geophysics globally. SEG has the will to establish sustainable near surface programming. Combining organizations could significantly increase the resources available to serve the geophysical community.

Merger Timeline

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In the event of a merger, how would membership dues change?

Members affiliated with the new SEG-EEGS merged entity would be SEG members and would pay SEG dues only. There would be no surcharge for those members electing affiliation with the SEG near surface community. The benefit package might be slightly different than for other members (still a topic of Task Force discussion). Members in less developed countries would pay reduced dues as per existing SEG membership policy..

How long has a merger between societies been considered?
The SEG-EEGS Collaboration Task Force was established in September 2011 with a mission to "evaluate and recommend approaches for cooperation between the two societies for the benefit of the near-surface geophysical community, including but not limited to the possibility of merging into a single entity."

How is each organization being represented in merger talks?
Task Force members representing EEGS are Bill Doll (co-chair), Mark Dunscomb, Doug Laymon, Bruce Smith, John Stowell, John Nicholl and Cathy Skokan. Task force members representing SEG are John Bradford (co-chair), Rick Miller and Peter Annan. Learn more about the SEG Task Force.

What decisions have been made at this point?
In August 2012, both societies executed a formal recommendation to enter into a memorandum of understanding to work in good faith to develop a draft agreement for a potential merger.

What are SEG and EEGS doing now to further investigate a possible merger?

The SEG-EEGS Collaboration Task Force continues to meet monthly to identify issues that a merger would create and to try to find mutually acceptable solutions.

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What unique benefits would each organization bring to a possible merger?
EEGS Flagship programs are SAGEEP–the annual spring meeting for near surface geophysicists and related engineering disciplines; JEEG—a peer reviewed journal for publication of near surface geophysical papers; and FastTIMES—a quarterly e-Publication broadly distributed to near surface geophysicists and related disciplines.

SEG provides a near surface technical program track at its fall Annual Meeting as well as opportunities to publish near surface geophysics papers (6 – 8 per issue) in their flagship bi-monthly journal, Geophysics. Opportunities are also available to publish one or two special sections with a near surface focus in the society's monthly magazine, The Leading Edge. In 2011, SEG approved the new Near Surface Honorary Lecture Program, intended to select annually a renowned near surface geophysicist and fund a global tour of 20-30 presentations. A new program in 2012 is the first of an annual series of near surface technology workshops jointly organized with AGU. Also, the SEG Foundation launched in 2009 the Geoscientists Without Borders® program, providing grants to non-profits for near surface geophysical projects, and building on long-standing scholarship and travel grant programs for student members, amongst whom students with near surface interests have been broadly represented.

What will happen if both Societies approve moving forward with a merger?
The recommendation will be put forward to the membership of EEGS and the SEG Near Surface Section for a vote. Only if this recommendation is approved by majority vote of both groups will a merger proceed. In such case, the merger would be completed in calendar year 2013.


How would near surface planning and activities be governed?

A wholly owned SEG subsidiary would provide near surface planning and programming within the overall framework of the SEG strategic plan for all SEG members who identify themselves as near surface. The subsidiary would be subject to its own Bylaws and would be led by a Board of Directors that is elected by SEG near surface members. The Board would have full fiduciary and legal responsibility for meeting the needs of the global near surface community.

In the event of a merger, what would happen to the EEGS Annual Meeting, SAGEEP?

A recent survey of EEGS and SEG near surface members confirms the need for such a flagship annual meeting of the near surface geophysical community. The current format and strengths of the Meeting would be maintained. SEG's outreach and marketing capabilities would be leveraged to grow participation.

In the event of a merger, what would happen to the EEGS Journal, JEEG?

A recent survey of EEGS and SEG near surface members confirms the importance of a flagship journal for the near surface community. The SEG-EEGS Collaboration Task Force is actively evaluating options for leveraging the reputation of Geophysics and for strengthening JEEG.

In the event of a merger, what would happen to the EEGS ePublication, FastTIMES?
Currently, the SEG-EEGS Collaboration Task Force is considering whether the content of FastTIMES should be delivered in an upgraded digital communication along the lines of the digital version of The Leading Edge. The task force is actively evaluating the importance of such a broader outreach communication to near surface community members.

How can I express my opinion?
The SEG-EEGS Collaboration Task Force seeks member input as it works to define a possible merged path that would greatly benefit the near surface geophysical community. Please contact Task Force members directly or send comments to EEGS at staff@eegs.org.

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