S4SLIDE Description

Assessing Geohazards, Environmental Implications and Economic Significance of Subaqueous Landslides across the World’s Continental Margins

The S4SLIDE project (IGCP-640) builds upon the extremely successful E-MARSHAL and IGCP-511 proposals also known as the Submarine Mass Movements and Their Consequences project. As with its predecessors, the IGCP-640 project will focus on facilitating the interaction of scientists, engineers, industry and government representatives, and other parties interested in subaqueous mass movements and their geohazard potential, especially those from historically under-represented countries. This project is part of an initiative by the International Geoscience Programme (IGCP) and Unesco.


It has been widely recognized that subaquatic landslides are of common occurrence in lacustrine and marine environments. These units have commonly been referenced to as submarine landslides in the literature. They pose a risk to coastal communities and offshore infrastructure. During the past decades geoscientists have made important contributions towards the improved understanding of submarine landslides. Efforts by the geo-modelling community have helped fill the gap between submarine landslide occurrence, dynamics and tsunami genesis. However, our lack of understanding of the causal mechanisms and timing of submarine landslides has hampered progress in the prediction effort, which is essential to implement appropriate mitigation measures.

Complex issues like these can only be addressed via a multidisciplinary approach. Interest in the study of submarine landslides spans a wide range of sub-disciplines: geologists studying the link between climate change and gas hydrate dissociation, planetary geologists using submarine landslides as terrestrial analogs, petroleum geologists evaluating the seal/reservoir capacity of ancient submarine landslides, and engineers evaluating geotechnical risks. This project seeks to create an international and multidisciplinary platform allowing geoscientists from academia and industry to sustain a dialogue conducive to the integration of findings from different fields into a more cohesive understanding of submarine landslides.

EPISODES Note: S4SLIDE Activity Report 2015-2016 - Click Here

EPISODES Note: S4SLIDE Activity Report 2016-2017 - Click Here

EPISODE Note (in review): S4SLIDE Activity Report 2017-2018 - Click Here

9th International Symposium on Subaqueous Mass Movements and Their Consequences (Dublin 2020) - Link

Image: Participant 8th International Symposium on Subaqueous Mass Movements and Their Consequences - Victoria, Canada 2018 (Organized by the Geological Survey of Canada and Ocean Networks Canada)