Extreme events happen in nature and in social life. To list a few, we can mention financial disasters, fires, hurricanes, tsunami, rogue waves, stampedes, climate catastrophes etc. Surprisingly, they happen more often than people would normally expect.
Are there common features to be seen in these apparently disparate events?
Can they be described using the tools of modern science?
No doubt, their analysis is vitally important at the present time. Students have a chance to make their own contributions to this science -- it may change the way we will deal with cataclysms in the future.