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HAZARD MAPPING AND RISK ASSESSMENTLinda Noson, Principal, Linda Noson Associates Key Words: Hazard, Mapping, Risk Assessment, Risk ManagementABSTRACT This working paper provides a conceptual and theoretical background for the Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment theme. The Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment theme provides guidance to help those in authority address the affects of natural, technological, and human hazards on a communitys vision for the future. Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment are essential to understanding and addressing risks that can interfere with a communitys ability to achieve that vision. The working paper provides sample initiatives and case histories to support and facilitate this theme. 1.0 Introduction

Working Paper Outline The following provides a brief description of each section included in this paper: Section 1: An Introduction to the Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment theme, including an outline of the working paper, basic definitions, a description of approaches and methodologies based on different hazard types, and an overview of hazard mapping and risk assessment initiatives at city level in Asia based on a multi-hazard scenario. The Importance of Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment in the establishment of a sustainable, effective community risk management program. Identification and discussion of the essential elements involved in Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment, including stakeholder support and involvement, identification of target risk management outcomes, balancing desired outcomes against data quality, data resolution, establishing risk indicators and cost constraints to determine if sufficient to achieve desired effect, etc. Identification and discussion of issues from which to extract lessons learned that can be used to strengthen Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment projects Case Studies to demonstrate the application of Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment to managing community risk and to identify elements included

Section 2: Section 3:

Section 4: Section 5:

Introduction to Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment Theme Risk management provides a comprehensive approach for developing and implementing sustainable and effective risk policies and interventions to manage the adverse effects of accidental losses, such as those related to natural hazard impacts, and of business losses, such as speculative annexation of property. Risk management consists of both a management process and a decision-making process. The traditional elements of management planning, organizing, leading, and controlling are applied to each of the five steps of the risk management decision-making process (from Essentials of Risk Management): (1) Identify and Analyze Loss Exposures; (2) Examine Alternative Risk Management Techniques; (3) Select Risk Management Techniques; (4) Implement techniques; and (5) Monitor Results. Table 1 shows each of the workshop themes within the corresponding step in the risk management process. Decision-Making Process: The Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment theme is the first step of the risk management decision-making process in which potential loss exposures are identified and analyzed.

Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment

This step focuses on the three elements that together define the risk (e.g. identify loss exposures): (1) the probability of a hazard occurring, (2) the values exposed to potential hazard impacts, and (3) the vulnerability of the values exposed to the hazard. These risks are then analyzed for their potential to prevent the organization from achieving specifically defined goals and objectives. Only those risks capable of preventing the organization from successfully accomplishing their goals and objectives are considered significant. Hazard mapping is one of a number of tools for combining and displaying risk information. Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment forms the foundation of the risk management decision-making process by providing information essential to understanding the nature of the communitys risk. This first step in the risk management process seeks to answer the question What risks potentially interfere with the communitys ability to meet the goals and objectives defining the communitys vision for the future. Based on the information from this theme, the risk manager can: (1) identify risk management strategies (doing the right things to manage risk consistent with the communitys vision); (2) identify operating strategies (doing the right things in the right way to control risk); (3) identify financial strategies (providing funds in the amounts and at the times necessary to finance recovery); and (4) evaluate the effectiveness of the comprehensive community risk management program (identify indicators of risk against which to measures success). Table 1. Steps in the Risk Management Process Step One Risk Management Process Identifying and Analyzing Loss Exposures Examine Alternative Risk Management Techniques Select Risk Management Techniques Theme 3 1 2 2 2 4 Four Implement Techniques 5 6 7 8 Five Monitor Results Theme Description Policy, Institutional, and Legal Arrangements Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment Mitigation Planning and Implementation Mitigation Planning and Implementation Mitigation Planning and Implementation Public Awareness and Social Marketing Capacity Building Promoting Safer Building Construction Community Based Approaches to Disaster Mitigation Climate Applications and Preparedness

Two Three

Management Process: The four management tasks are applied to each step in the risk management decision process as show on Table 2 for the Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment Theme. Table 2 shows the elements and activities associated with each task. Table 2. Management Tasks in the Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment Theme Step One: Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment (Identifying and Analyzing Loss Exposures) Tasks Elements Activities International, national, district, division, province, city, village, etc Study Region Establish boundaries for comparing variations in risk Program Municipality Owner


Regional Workshop on Best Practices in Disaster Mitigation

Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment

Program Manager

Program Policy ORGANIZE Authority, Responsibility Data Collection Team Data Collection Standards Training Exercise Monitor

Obtains commitment of City Officials Plans, organizes, leads and controls the Risk Management program Ensures all four management tasks are carried out for each step in the decision-making process Establishes schedule for updating information Estimates and budgets for cost of obtaining information Prepares a program blue print that outlines tasks, responsibilities, budgets, etc. This may be multi-phased. Establishes a Municipal Planning Team o Identifies risk management goals and objectives based on City policy statements, City services, plans, legislation, focus groups, interviews, historic events, etc. o Identifies sources of data necessary to define potential risks capable of obstructing goals and objectives o Sets meeting times and locations Establishes a Stakeholders Group involving individuals, organizations, technical experts, etc. capable of helping the municipality with the risk management program Uses municipal goals, objectives, and available resources to determine the types and format of information to be collected Establishes the commitment of City Officials to risk management Provides guiding principles based on the steps taken above Obtain authority to gather desired information Prepare data collection procedures and instructions Determine who will report to whom organizations, or agencies will be responsible for providing information Provide data collection instructions Follow-up with those who will be doing the data collection Establish standards for data quality and data collection timeliness Compare actual data collected against standards Correct and improve poor data as possible Provide specialized training to assist in data collection, such as interview techniques, mapping, GIS, etc. Practice collection process, e.g. small pilot study Document and Follow-up with each activity Analyze significance of data collected (risk assessment) Review and revise data collection process as necessary Prepare results for use in Step Two (Identify and Examine Feasibility of Risk Management Techniques)

Meet with the managers, technical advisors, etc., whose departments,



Basic Definitions The terms hazard, hazard assessment, hazard mapping, risk, risk assessment and many other risk management concepts have been used interchangeably to mean different things and have been used differently to mean the same thing. This blurring of meanings makes it necessary to provide working definitions for the terms and concepts as they are used in this working paper. One must be sure to understand the authors definition of these words when using various reports and publications pertaining to risk management, hazard management, etc. The following are definitions of words commonly used in risk management programs. Risk Management: Risk management is both an administrative and decision-making process for addressing the potential adverse effects of accidental and business losses on an organizations capability to accomplish business goals and objectives. Risk management focuses on managing potential losses capable of interfering with the service goals and objectives of non-profit organizations.

Regional Workshop on Best Practices in Disaster Mitigation


Hazard Mapping and Risk Assessment

Accidental Losses: Accidental losses include those from unintended impacts, which were not intentionally caused by the organization or community that sustained the loss. While accidental losses are sometimes restricted to mean only those that prod


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