This medal was established by the Natural Hazards Division to recognise interdisciplinary natural-hazard research. The name of Gaius Plinius Secundus (~23 – 79 A.D.) acknowledges the role of our ancestors working to improve both knowledge and mitigation of natural hazards. From 2002–2003 (EGS) and 2004–2011 (EGU) it was awarded to early career scientists. Since 2012 the medal recognises interdisciplinary research in natural hazards by active scientists. Its is awarded to outstanding active scientists who meet the following criteria: outstanding research achievements in fields related with natural hazards, important interdisciplinary activity in two or more fields related with this topic, and research that has been applied in the mitigation of risks from natural hazards.
The medal has been exclusively designed for the EGU by József Kótai.