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New Multi-Hazard and Multi-Risk Assessment Methods for Europe


A variety of natural extreme events, including earthquakes, landslides, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, river floods, winter storms, wildfires and coastal phenomena, threaten different regions of Europe. This leads to populations suffering losses not only from individual hazards, but also from multiple events that occur in combination. In both their occurrence and their consequences, different hazards are often causally related. Classes of interaction include triggered events, cascade effects and the rapid increase in vulnerability during successive hazards. Effective and efficient risk reduction, therefore, often needs to rest on a location-based synoptic view. Planners and policy-makers, and the scientists, who inform their judgments, usually treat the hazards and risks related to such events separately from each other, neglecting interdependencies between the different types of phenomena, as well as the importance of risk comparability. Resolving this deficit will improve their ability to take risk reduction measures in a cost-effective way and in doing so, strengthen societies' resilience to natural disasters.    

Within the MATRIX project, we are involved in the Work Package 2 “Single-type risk assessment and comparability”, where we contribute together with our partners to the review of single-type risk and uncertainty assessment procedures with the aim to develop a strategy for risk harmonization across different perils.  

In the Work Package 3 “Cascade effects in the multi-hazard approach”, we investigate together with the colleagues from the GFZ Section 2.1 “Earthquake Risk and Early Warning” the possible cascading effects of concurrent occurrence of earthquake and river flood in the City of Cologne. In particular, the stability of flood protection structures and associated changes in flood risk are being studied. 

Project coordination:  Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum (GFZ),

Germany Project partners:  

  • Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum (GFZ), Germany
  • Analisi e Monitoraggio del Rischio Ambientale (AMRA), Italy
  • Bureau de Recherches Geologiques et Minieres (BRGM), France
  • Norges Geotekniske Institut (NGI), Norway
  • Internationales Institut für angewandte Systemanalyse (IIASA), Austria
  • SPINALL William Phillip – Aspinall & Associates (ASPINALL), United Kingdom
  • Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT), Germany
  • Technische Universität Delft (TU Delft), The Netherlands
  • Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich (ETH), Switzerland
  • Instituto Superior de Agronomia (ISA-CEABN), Portugal
  • Deutsches Komitee Katastrophenvorsorge e.V. (DKKV), Germany
  • University of British Colombia (UBC), Canada


Funding: MATRIX is a cooperation project in the Call ENV.2010.1.3.4-1 “New methodologies for multi-hazard and multi-risk assessment” within the EU 7th Framework Programme. 

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