Identifying spatial clusters of flood exposure to support decision making in risk management

Röthlisberger, Veronika; Zischg, Andreas Paul; Keiler, Margreth (2017). Identifying spatial clusters of flood exposure to support decision making in risk management. Science of the total environment, 598, pp. 593-603. Elsevier 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.03.216

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A sound understanding of flood risk drivers (hazard, exposure and vulnerability) is essential for the effective and efficient implementation of risk-reduction strategies. In this paper, we focus on ‘exposure’ and study the influence of different methods and parameters of flood exposure analyses in Switzerland. We consider two types of exposure indicators and two different spatial aggregation schemes: the density of exposed assets (exposed numbers per km2) and the ratios of exposed assets (share of exposed assets compared to total amount of assets in a specific region) per municipality and per grid cells of similar size as the municipalities. While identifying high densities of exposed assets highlights priority areas for cost-efficient strategies, high exposure ratios can suggest areas of interest for strategies focused on the most vulnerable regions, i.e. regions with a low capacity to cope with a disaster. In Switzerland, the spatial distribution of high exposure densities and exposure ratios tend to be complementary. With regards to the methods, we find that the spatial cluster analysis provides more information for the prioritization of flood protection measures than ‘simple’ maps of spatially aggregated data represented in quantiles. In addition, our study shows that the data aggregation scheme influences the results. It suggests that the aggregation based on grid cells supports the comparability of different regions better than aggregation based on municipalities and is, thus, more appropriate for nationwide analyses.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography > Physical Geography > Unit Hydrology
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography > Physical Geography > Unit Geomorphology
10 Strategic Research Centers > Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR)
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography > Physical Geography

Graduate School:

Graduate School of Climate Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Röthlisberger, Veronika; Zischg, Andreas Paul and Keiler, Margreth

Subjects:

500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology
900 History > 910 Geography & travel

ISSN:

0048-9697

Publisher:

Elsevier

Projects:

[245] Mobiliar Lab für Naturrisiken Official URL

Language:

English

Submitter:

Monika Wälti-Stampfli

Date Deposited:

18 May 2017 11:39

Last Modified:

18 May 2017 11:39

Publisher DOI:

10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.03.216

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.99551

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/99551

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