Chapter 3


Risk and Vulnerability
Part 2



Risk Evaluation
Risk Acceptability
Risk Perception

Risk Management Process ISO. 3100 .

hazards will have been identified. and analyzed • Communities are rarely able to mitigate all risks • Not all risks require immediate / any action • Some risks can be reduced easily. risk perception. mapped. described. others may require huge cash resources. and a committed effort to achieve even slight reductions • Other factors: Risk acceptability. risk benefits . time.Risk Evaluation • Conducted to determine the relative seriousness of hazard risks • By the time risk evaluation begins.

to further determine the accuracy of the final risk value recorded.Why Evaluate Risk? • Identify which risks require referral to other agencies • Identify which risks require treatment by the disaster managers • Further evaluate risks using judgment based upon available data and anecdotal evidence. .

Examples of Risk Evaluation Methods • Creating a risk matrix • Comparing hazard risks against levels of risk estimated during the analysis process with previously established risk evaluation criteria • Evaluating risks according to the SMAUG methodology .

Risk Matrix: example .

SMAUG Methodology • • • • • Seriousness Manageability Acceptability Urgency Growth .

Risk Acceptability Influence • Personal (dread factor/ voluntary or involuntary) • Political / Social • Economic • Criticisms: – Money influences the acceptability of risk – Valuing life is not ethical – An undemocratic process .

Risk Acceptability Influence .


e) changing the consequences. b) taking or increasing the risk in order to pursue an opportunity.Decisions About Risks / Risk Treatment Options a) avoiding the risk by deciding not to start or continue with the activity that gives rise to the risk. Source: ISO 31000 . d) changing the likelihood. and g) retaining the risk by informed decision. c) removing the risk source. f) sharing the risk with another party or parties (including contracts and risk financing).

but only the beginning • One must be able to judge the relative seriousness of that hazard in comparison to other hazards • For laypeople. the mechanisms by which they perceive hazards is very complex • Risk perception = the study of why people fear the things they do (and also why they do not fear other things) • People do not tend to fear the things that are statistically most likely to kill them .Risk Perception • Recognition that a hazard exists is important.

Risk Perception Experiment .

1979) .Decision Making Under Risk • Expected Utility Theory (von Neumann and Morgenstern-1947) • Subjective Utility Theory (Savage-1954) • Prospect Theory (Kahneman and Tversky.

country. area. group. social. community. and environmental factors or processes • Dictate how likelihood and consequence are increased or decreased. individual. • Vulnerability  Exposure .Vulnerability • A measure of the propensity of an object. economic. or other entity to incur the consequences of a hazard • Results from a combination of physical.

and each is interconnected with the others .Types of Vulnerability • • • • Physical Social Economic Environmental • Each is determined by a set profile of factors that are identifiable and measurable.

and how those hazards’ consequences will manifest themselves .The Physical Profile • Dictates physical vulnerability of a country • A collective examination of three principal components. including: – Geography – Infrastructure – Populations • The more that is known about these three components. the better understood physical vulnerability will be • Each of these components contributes to the hazards that are likely to occur.

and include: – – – – – – – – Education Culture Government Social interaction Values Laws Beliefs Many other aspects of society • Group vulnerability varies due to a range of sociocultural factors that help or prevent them from being able to protect themselves from disasters .The Social Profile • Aspects of the social profile are diverse.

and may increase the likelihood that a hazard event develops into a disaster • A healthy and productive natural environment provides excellent protection from a variety of hazards.The Environmental Profile • Natural environment helps to define what practices and actions are possible and effective • Environments are vulnerable to the consequences of hazards. while a damaged and unhealthy natural environment can reduce protection from specific hazards and in some cases increase the potential impact of the hazard .

The Economic Profile • The financial status of governments and population groups affects their ability to be able to protect themselves from disaster consequences • Financial well being alone does not indicate that they will protect themselves .it is just a measure of their ability to do so • Poor countries experience more disasters – their capacity to respond dictates what constitutes a disaster .

Two Risk Factors that Influence Vulnerability • Urbanization • Rural livelihoods .

often dangerous.Urbanization • Populations are concentrating in urban centers – By 2007. over half the world’s population will live in cities • Urbanization presents significant challenges for disaster managers and urban planners • The concentration of people concentrates risk – The absolute numbers of people exposed to individual hazards increases as those people settle closer together – Land pressures require the poor to settle in undesirable. often vulnerable pockets • Capacity must grow with populations . parts of urban centers • Urbanization concentrates national wealth and resources into small.

Rural Livelihoods • More than half of the world’s population. including: – – – – Rural poverty Environmental degradation Non-diversified economies Isolation and remoteness . and more than 70% of the impoverished. live in rural areas • Rural populations experience vulnerability from disasters because of a unique set of factors that results directly from their rural living conditions.