The National Institute of Building Sciences seeks qualified scientific and technical professionals from the public, private and academic sectors to serve on independent scientific panels. These Scientific Resolution Panels (SRPs) convene for the purpose of reviewing and resolving conflicting scientific and technical data, submitted by a community, challenging the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) proposed flood hazard data.
When a community challenges the proposed FEMA flood elevations for a particular area, the community or FEMA may request that an SRP be convened. NIBS will convene an independent panel from its cadre of experts, co-selected by the challenging community and FEMA, to review FEMA's flood hazard data and the flood hazard data submitted by the community to determine which studies are technically and scientifically more accurate.
The panel then will render a written decision that denies or accepts the alternative flood elevations submitted by the community. The SRP’s decision will serve as the recommendation to the FEMA Administrator for resolution of the conflicting data.
Who May Serve on a Panel
Interested professionals must have a minimum of 10 years of proven experience with expertise in one of the following surface water hydrology, hydraulics, coastal engineering, and other relevant engineering and scientific fields or a related field:
- Coastal storm and hydraulic engineering
- Coastal geotechnical engineering
- Water resource engineering (surface water hydrology, open-channel flow hydraulics, hydrologic engineering)
- Geotechnical engineering
- Alluvial fan engineering
- Levee analysis and mapping
- FEMA guidelines and standards for flood risk analysis and mapping
They also must have expertise with riverine, lacustrine, coastal flood hazard, surveying, topographic information, hydrologic analysis, hydraulic analysis, coastal analysis or other pertinent experience applicable to the development of flood elevations and Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs).
What Happens Next
If approved, SRP Cadre members may be called to serve on one to three SRPs per year, averaging the equivalent of two to five days’ effort spread over three months.
Panels will be conducted virtually, with no travel involved. Panel members will be compensated for their services under contract with NIBS.
To become a member of the NIBS SRP Cadre, learn more about the scientific resolution panel initiative, or fill out an application, visit www.floodsrp.org/apply.