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Spatial Risk Management and Climate Impact Research

Midir - Multidimensional Integrated Risk Governance (2006- 2008)

The project "Multidimensional Integrated Risk Governance" (MIDIR) was a Coordinated Action in the Sixth Framework Programme of the European Commission, Area “Science & Society”, Priority “Integrative approaches to risk governance”. Its main aim was to develop a resilience and risk governance concept based on existing research and an accompanying management, monitoring and evaluation tool. In this context, the material goal "resiliency" and the more procedural approach "risk governance" were combined through an interdisciplinary approach that defined a reasonable path (risk governance) towards the material goal of creating resilient communities. The concept was tested in various real decision-making settings of existing risk management systems.

Partners of MIDIR were:

  • National Research Council, Institute of Research on Population and Social Policies (Italy)
  • University of Dortmund, Faculty of Spatial Planning (Germany)
  • iku GmbH (Germany)
  • Gaiasoft International Ltd. (UK)
  • Federal Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs, Health, Family and Women of Rhineland-Palatinate (Germany)
  • Lazio Region (Italy).


Current risk management research and practice is fragmented by subject and by level of decision-making. Risks to our social fabric violate boundaries between nation states, government and communities. Trust is fundamental for risk interpretation of the public between "real" and "perceived" risks. Limitations of risk science, the importance and difficulty of maintaining trust, and the socio-political nature of risk mean that a new approach is required: More public participation in risk assessments and decision-making is needed in order to make the decision process more democratic, improve the relevance/quality of technical analysis and increase the legitimacy and public acceptance of political decisions.

The main objective of the project MIDIR was to develop a resilience and risk governance concept based on existing research and an accompanying management, monitoring and evaluation tool, using Gaiasoft’s Integral Scorecard software. In this context, the material goal "resiliency" and the more procedural approach "risk governance" was combined through an interdisciplinary approach that defined a reasonable path (risk governance) towards the material goal of creating resilient communities.

The new concept was tested in the real decision-making settings of existing risk management systems by the example of two emerging risks with a high degree of uncertainty and ambiguity: risks related to criminals under hospital treatment order and risks related to health due to e-commerce. Implementing the new risk governance concept tested its applicability in praxis and led to new, innovative knowledge about dealing with these risks in Europe. An accompanying management tool monitored and evaluated the process over the whole project time providing detailed and comparable information about results. Bringing risk governance to policy and decision-making and other societal actors by networking and disseminating the new concept completed the co-ordination activities.

The brochure of the this project can be downloaded here.

Contact: Prof. Dr. Stefan Greiving, Dr.-Ing. Sylvia Wanczura

Further information: http://www.midir.eu

Other projects in this research area: