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Spatial Risk Management and Climate Impact Research

Mountain Risks (2007- 2010)

The project will strengthen the collaboration between several research groups, training centres, and consulting companies, with experts of mountain processes, holding different backgrounds, playing different roles in the risk management scheme, and working in different socio-economic, legal and environmental contexts.

The Mountain Risks project is structured in four different main steps:

  • risks analysis,
  • quantitative risk assessment,
  • risk management and
  • risk governance.

Within the Mountain Risks project, risk governance principles will be considered in order to create resilient communities facing mountain risks. More effective risk management measures and advances in knowledge transfer are required and those must incorporate lessons from past disasters. The legal framework in general and the planning system in particular of each country will be considered as relevant for risk governance. Attention also has to be paid to the given differences in characteristics of the several risk types. Still, the message has to be in scientific accurate terms, but in an understandable manner to the target group. Results will be presented applying modern visualisation tools such as web-based applications, fly-through imagery and scenario modelling procedures. The geo-information will be adapted to these needs without loosing scientific accuracy. It is envisaged to deliver not only final results, but also accompanied by uncertainty and reliability measures. In particular this information is needed by responsible target groups in order to support their decision-making progress. The applicability of governance principles will be tested for different risk settings in mountain areas (avalanches, landslides, rock falls, flash floods). Access to real risk management measures will be analysed by involving provincial and local planners. Stakeholders will be empowered by the project via training courses (stakeholder workshops, intensive courses in each case study area with participants from all social groups and local administration) in order to improve effectiveness and efficiency, minimise side-effects, improve inter- and intra-generational justice, guarantee legal and political implementability.

The following themes will be addressed by the project:

  • Incorporate the lessons learnt from past disasters in the management;
  • Identify legal aspects, risk cultures and insurance possibilities;
  • Communicate information, educate practitioners and population, and involve all stakeholders in decision-making;
  • Establish practical thresholds for acceptable and tolerable risks;
  • Provide a framework for the use of geo-information at all levels and define the potentiality of modern visualisation tools.

Contact: Marjory Angignard, Prof. Dr. Stefan Greiving

Further information: http://www.unicaen.fr/mountainrisks

Other projects in this research area: