Christopher W Johnson

Full CV (PDF)

Education and Appointments

University of California, San Diego, current
Scripps Institution of Oceanography / Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics
NSF Postdoctoral Fellow
Co-Advisors Frank Vernon (UCSD), Yehuda Ben-Zion (USC) and Adrian Borsa (UCSD)
Project: Properties of the shallow crust around the San Jacinto Fault Zone characterized by joint geodetic and seismic analysis

University of California, Berkeley, CA
School of Earth and Planetary Science
Ph.D. 2017
Advisor Roland Bürgmann
Dissertation: Stress modulation of earthquakes: A study of long and short period stress perturbations and the crustal response

Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA
School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
B.Sc. 2012, Highest Honors, GPA: 4.0
Geophysics Solid Earth track & Research Option
Advisors Kurt L Frankel and Andrew V Newman
Undergraduate Thesis: Measuring Present-Day Strain Rates along the Fish Lake Valley Fault System, Pacific-North America Plate Boundary

Southern Polytechnic State University, Marietta, GA
Undergraduate courses 2008-2009

Georgia Perimeter College, Clarkston, GA
Associate Degree, December 2000

Previous Employment

Kelley Commercial Truck Center, Diesel Technician, Atlanta, GA, 2000-2004
Tom’s Truck Center, Master Level Diesel Technician, Santa Ana, CA, 2004-2006
Adobe Commercial Truck Center, Master Level Diesel Technician, Atlanta, GA, 2007-2008

Teaching Assistant Positions

Structural Geology – EPS 116 (Spring 2015; Spring 2016)
   Upper division introduction to structural geology
   2015 Student Instructor Evaluations 6.2 (dept. avg. 5.75)
   2016 Student Instructor Evaluations 6.2 (dept. avg. 5.95)

Case Studies in Earth Systems – EPS 150 (Fall 2013; Fall 2014; Fall 2015)
   Upper division scientific writing course

Energy and Society - EAS2803 (Spring 2012)
   Lower division scientific writing course

Thermodynamics, Earth Systems - EAS 3606 (Fall 2011)
   Upper division introduction to thermodynamic systems of the Earth

Field and Lab Experiences

Jul 2018, SJFZ Imaging fault with two adjacent arrays, 30 day deployment of 400 GSX geophones
Feb 2018, SJFZ Wind induced ground motion experiment, 30 day deployment of 40 ZLand geophones
Nov 2017, SJFZ Dry Wash section, remove 18 short period seismic stations after 5-year deployment
Sep 2016, GPS campaign for Hayward Fault
Aug 2014, Rapid GPS deployment following South Napa earthquake
Dec 2013, Mapping the Mission Creek Fault and geochronology sample collection
2010-2012, Cosmogenic Nuclide Processing Lab, Georgia Institute of Technology
May 2012 – June 2012, GPS campaign and mapping in the Eastern California shear zone
May 2011 – June 2011, GPS campaign and mapping in the Eastern California shear zone
Mar 2011, Ten day mapping exercises in active tectonic regions in the Sierra Nevada
Fall 2010, One week in the Southern Appalachians for a course in Structural Geology. Topics included mapping exercises and fault analysis.
May 2010 – June 2010, GPS campaign and surface sample collection in the eastern California shear zone.

Research Interest

I explore research questions regarding earthquake triggering, induced seismicity, seasonal loading, and interseismic deformation utilizing seismic data (e.g. waveforms, focal mechanisms, and seismicity), geodetic data (e.g. InSAR and GPS), and modeling tools. The goal of my research is to quantify stress changes in the crust, explore seismicity rate variations and migration patterns, and fault deformation rates in order to characterize the evolving state of stress on faults and the migration of fluids in the crust.


Yehuda Ben-Zion, University of Southern California, Los Angeles
Adrian Borsa, University of California, San Diego
Roland Bürgmann (PhD Advisor), University of California, Berkeley
Estelle Chaussard, State University of New York, Buffalo
Brent Delbridge, University of California, Berkeley
Pierre Dutilleul, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
Yuning Fu, Bowling Green State University, Ohio
Zachary M Lifton, Idaho Geological Survey, Boise, ID
Kathryn Z. Materna, University of California, Berkeley
Zhigang Peng, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia
Fred F. Pollitz, USGS, Menlo Park, California
Frank Vernon, University of California, San Diego

Awards and Recognitions

National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, 2017-2019
Louderback Award, Earth and Planetary Science, UC Berkeley, 2017
National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program, 2012-2017
Rutt Bridges Research Initiative Award, Undergraduate initiated research salary, 2011
Presidential Undergraduate Research Award, Undergraduate initiated research salary, 2011
Anadarko/SEG Tuition Scholarship, 2011 – 2012
Georgia Hope Scholar, full tuition scholarship, 2008 – 2011

Awarded Funding

National Science Foundation EAR Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2017-2019
Southern California Earthquake Center, 2014-2017 (proposal with R. Bürgmann)
Northern California Earthquake Hazard Program, 2014-2016 (proposal with R. Bürgmann)
National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program, 2012-2017
Geological Society of America, Undergrad Research Grant, Summer 2011

Community Outreach

EPS Department Coordinator for Bay Area Science in Schools outreach program organized by Community Resources for Science ( from 2015-2017. Lead activities for the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory outreach program. Involvement includes developing lesson plans for earthquakes, faulting, earthquake safety, and preparedness for the 6th – 8th grade level. Travel to local middle schools, with a focus on underrepresented communities, and give 1-2 hour lessons with a lab component on earthquake faulting, liquefaction, and safety.


Geological Society of America, since 2011
American Geophysical Union, since 2010
Seismological Society of America, since 2013
Southern California Earthquake Center


Computing: Python, Matlab, Fortran, C, BASH
Data processing: ISCE, GMTSAR, SAC, ObsPy, R
Document / Presentation: Office platform, Adobe
Language: English (native), Spanish (can communicate)
Additional: ASE Master Level Technician Medium/Heavy Trucks (2003-2008)