406: Roundtable Discussion: Addressing the Complexity of Integrated Flood Risk Management


Lieven De Smet, HIVA, K.U. Leuven


Decisions on measures to fight flooding are based on flood risk modeling. The methods used by water managers are well-established with respect to assessing material flood risk. Intangible flood risk is important, but currently largely disregarded. When flood risk is underestimated the proposed measures may lay the wrong accents and be too limited. The European flood Directive (2007/60/EC) anticipates this problem and requires Member States to go beyond material flood risk and take social, ecological and cultural flood risk into account. Methods have been developed to quantify these risks using various non monetary scales. How to integrate all this complementary information in order to facilitate sound policy decisions? Should a multi-criteria analysis (MCA) be used or is a cost benefit analysis preferred? The latter option requires monetizing intangible, e.g. social, flood risks. Can standard monetary factors be used? An MCA typically provides room for integrating case specific value judgments. Will this not lead to a situation in which results are constantly called into question and thus lengthy decision processes? Quantitative risk information and illustrations (maps) are available of flood risk along the river Dijle in the city of Leuven, Belgium, to introduce and facilitate a semi-structured discussion on this problem.

1 Comment

  1. Matt
    13 June 11, 12:58pm

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