Vulnerability
Analysis
David Alexander
University College London
The components of risk
Physical disaster
Magnitude
Frequency
Duration
Human
vulnerability
Exposure
Location of hazard
Envi...
Uncertain
future:
long-term
trends
climate
change
capacity
to adapt
Livelihoods:
security and
wealth
generation
Hazards
an...
Vulnerability is constructed socially
• it is mainly the result of social,
economic, political and cultural
factors in dec...
Trends in disaster losses are unsustainable.
In the second half of the 20th century
the world experienced increases of:
• ...
Then (1950s) Now (2013)
Under-reporting of
disasters
More complete
recording
Counting only direct
effects
Quantifying indi...
• social and technological
complexity are increasing
• fixed capital is being accumulated
• the world is becoming more pol...
Vulnerability approach
• people, not physical forces, are the
principal cause of risks and disasters
• focus on reducing c...
A sample of the annual
pattern of casualties
in natural disasters
A sample of the annual pattern
of losses in natural disasters
Deathtolls
Economic losses
Differential impact of disasters
Developing countries and
depressed urban areas
of developed co...
What exactly is vulnerability?
Risk
Civil defence
Hazard
Vulnerability
Threat
Exposure
Response
Mitigation Protection
Civil protection
Vulnerability is...
• the potential degree of loss resulting
from a particular hazard or set
of hazards of a given magnitu...
UNESCO / UNDRO (1982) Definitions
of Hazard and Risk Terminology
Vulnerability (V): the degree of loss
to a given element ...
Vulnerability
Total: life is
generally
precarious
Residual: caused by
lack of modernisation
Newly
generated:
caused by
cha...
Primary
• cause and effect
Secondary
• interaction of causes
• coincidences
Complex
• complicated
interactions
VULNERABILI...
(Hazard x Vulnerability x Exposure)
Resilience
= Risk
[ → Impact → Response]
Hazard x (Vulnerability / Resilience)
[x Expo...
VulnerabilityHazard
An asset is not
vulnerable unless
it is threatened
by something
A hazard is not
hazardous unless
it th...
Disaster management
Emergency management
Crisis management
Risk management
Vulnerability management
Hypothetical
Concrete ...
Verticalaxisscales:
Hazard:probabilityofoccurrence
Vulnerability:potentialdamage
Risk:valueofprobablecostsandlosses
Severi...
The role of
perception
Risk
amplification
factors
Risk
mitigation
factors
Total
vulnerability
Risk perception
factors- +positivenegative
DIALECTIC
Causes of disaster
natural geophysical,
technological, social
History
single and
cumulative
impact
of past
disasters
Human...
Diffusion of information
Perceptual filter
Cultural filter
Emergency not decoded
Emergency decoded
Ignorance
Images
of rea...
Long term
Short term
Emic components
Etic components
METAMORPHOSIS
OF CULTURE
Experiences of culture
[mass-media and consu...
Value
system
Family
culture
Work
culture
Peer
group
culture
Personal
culture
National culture
Regional culture
Technology
organisations
safety culture
Ethnology
societies
community culture
Psychology
ethnic groups
individual culture
...
Filter
Perception
Culture
Decision
Action
Result
Positive Negative
Risk
Accurate Inaccurate
Technology
as risk
mitigation
Technology
as a source
of vulnerability
Research,
development
and investment
in technology
i...
Cultural
filter
Risk
management
practices
Benign
Malignant
Technology
as a source of
risk reduction
Technology as
an inadv...
Large disaster
Increased
expenditure
Return of
complacency
Risk-expenditure cycle
Deaths, injuries,
hardship, damage,
disr...
Disaster
Public
outcry Rhetoric
Logic
Laws
Safety
culture
The evolution of
a safety culture
What exactly is resilience?
Vulnerability = 1 / resilience
Resilience: mechanisms for avoiding
impacts or absorbing them by coping
Coping strategies:
...
What is resilience [resiliency]?
• a combination of resistance and
adaptation (coping, capacity, capability)
• ability to ...
Attitude
The
ingredients
of resilience
• robustness: resist stress
without loss of function
• redundancy: ability to continue
functioning during periods of disru...
Recovery
and
reconstruction
Mitigation
and
resilience
Preparation
and
mobilisation
Emergency
intervention
Quiescence
Crisi...
needs to be shortenedneeds to be
lengthened
preparation
for the
next event
warning
and
evacuation
recovery and
reconstruct...
Conclusions
Disaster
opens a
window of
opportunity
for positive
change and
greater
security
The optimistic view
What is sustainable vulnerability reduction?
• it is centred upon the local level
(but is harmonised from above)
• through...
HUMAN
CONSEQUENCES
OF DISASTER
“ORTHODOX” MODEL
PHYSICAL
EVENT
HUMAN
VULNERABILITY
“RADICAL CRITIQUE” (K. HEWITT et al.)
H...
Resilience against disasters:
Ten suggestions for action
Organised
non-structural
protection
Enhanced
structural
protection
Planning,
warning and
preparedness
Fusion with
sustaina...
Tell people what to do in a crisis.
Develop urban search and
rescue capacity on site.
Reduce non-structural as
well as structural hazards.
Plan flexibly.
Create networks.
Encourage governance.
Adapt and disseminate good practice.
Ensure that Disaster Risk Reduction
(DRR) programmes are sustainable
Create a strategy for recovering
from the next disaster.
Create a culture of resilience
against disasters.
...and avoid the
myth of panic:
it should not be
treated as a
relevant factor
in emergency
planning
Exposure Sensitivity
Capacity to
adapt
VULNERA-
BILITY
Dimensions of
vulnerability:
• exposure
• sensitivity
• capacity
to...
Vulnerability
• Dimensions
• Components
• Measures
Exposure Sensitivity
Capacity
to adapt
VULNERA-
BILITY
Physical dimensi...
Analysis
• registered
• archived
• forgotten
• ignored
Vulnerability
maintained
-
• utilised
• adopted
• learned
Disaster
...
A guide to recognizing
vulnerability in the field
How to estimate vulnerability in the field
Elements:
• buildings and physical structures
• lifelines and infrastructure
• ...
NB: Most of the
following slides show
post hoc indications
of vulnerability.
Squatter settlement
in Bangladesh Flood level
Normal river level
Rather than mitigating the sources of
vulnerability to di...
Peruvian
Andes,
Eastern
Cordillera
Rock debris
slide-fall
Destroyed
houses
The 'megacity' problem
Tehran
Tehran
Kathmandu
Kathmandu
İstanbul
İstanbul
Tokyo
Poor building
quality
(low seismic
resistance)
Proximity
to epicentre
and fault
rupture
Topographic
amplification
Sediment...
'Window' of active fault
with mullion slickensides
and normal (vertical
downwards) displacement
Seismic consolidation-
com...
Vulnerability in the
connection between
wall and joist leads
to collapse of the
structure in an
earthquake
Random rubble
masonry with
powdery lime
mortar is a
major source
of vulnerability
in historic and
old buildings.
Collapse often begins
at roof level if roof
structure is too rigid
and poorly tied to
vertical load-bearing
members.
Cornices,parapets
and other façade
details are
particularly
vulnerable to
damage in
earthquakes.
[four people were
crushed...
Inadequately
constructed
frame buildings
are vulnerable to
progressive collapse.
Stairwells are
often the most
vulnerable part
of the building
during
earthquakes,
and the first
part that people
use as th...
Zone of interference
Differential movements
Pre-earthquake
roof-line
Replacement
stonework
Self-protection during earthquakes and
tornadoes is NOT fostered by the myth that
it is safe to shelter under desks and ta...
Rim of caldera blasted
apart in A.D. 79
Cone active
A.D. 1631-1944
Europe's most densely populated municipality
(populatio...
0 1 2 3 4 5 km
Tyrrhenian
Sea
Mt Vesuvius
Portici
Ercolano
( and Herculaneum)
Mt Somma
Naples
Barra
Pompeii
Torre
del Grec...
Somma-Vesuvius Portici (pop. 80,000)
1631
pyroclastic flow
1631 pyroclastic flow
(4000 dead in Portici)
recent flank cone
19th century
lava flows
homes of 1-3 million people
Mount
Vesuvius
Forward thrust
Nodes are
first to fail
Columns
shear through
under sustained
pressure
Landslide direction
Spontaneous
toppling failure
in unconsolidated
sands
Backward
rotation of
toppled blocks
Bedrooms where
four people died
Spontaneous total failure of foundations
Spontaneous total
failure of r-c frame bldg
...with some
forward thrust
Tranquil Alpine scene
...with debris flow
...and several
brand-new hotels
at its foot
...and boulders
that went
right through!
david.alexander@ucl.ac.uk
emergency-planning.blogspot.com
Presentations can be downloaded from:-
www.slideshare.com/dealex...
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Vulnerability to Disasters

  1. 1. Vulnerability Analysis David Alexander University College London
  2. 2. The components of risk Physical disaster Magnitude Frequency Duration Human vulnerability Exposure Location of hazard Environment Resistance Lifestyle and earnings Health Resilience Adjustments Risk reduction activities Preparations for disaster After Ian Davis (2005)
  3. 3. Uncertain future: long-term trends climate change capacity to adapt Livelihoods: security and wealth generation Hazards and risks: disaster preparedness Governance: democratic participation in decision making RESILIENCE: managing risks adapting to change securing resources
  4. 4. Vulnerability is constructed socially • it is mainly the result of social, economic, political and cultural factors in decision-making • it is becoming harder to reduce.
  5. 5. Trends in disaster losses are unsustainable. In the second half of the 20th century the world experienced increases of: • 250% in the number of recorded disasters • 500% in number of disasters with victims • 500% in the number of affected people • 1640% in the cost of insured damage. • 1500% in the total cost of disasters Disasters 1900-2010
  6. 6. Then (1950s) Now (2013) Under-reporting of disasters More complete recording Counting only direct effects Quantifying indirect effects Smaller population of hazardous places Larger population, greater densities Less inequality Growing inequality and marginalisation Less fixed capital at risk Relentless accumulation of fixed capital Simpler socio-economic networks More complex networks
  7. 7. • social and technological complexity are increasing • fixed capital is being accumulated • the world is becoming more polarised • urbanisation and the growth of "mega-cities". Societies are becoming more vulnerable
  8. 8. Vulnerability approach • people, not physical forces, are the principal cause of risks and disasters • focus on reducing community vulnerability • "soft" rather than "hard" approaches • "bottom-up" (grass roots) approach.
  9. 9. A sample of the annual pattern of casualties in natural disasters
  10. 10. A sample of the annual pattern of losses in natural disasters
  11. 11. Deathtolls Economic losses Differential impact of disasters Developing countries and depressed urban areas of developed countries Developed countries and the richest cities of the developing world
  12. 12. What exactly is vulnerability?
  13. 13. Risk Civil defence Hazard Vulnerability Threat Exposure Response Mitigation Protection Civil protection
  14. 14. Vulnerability is... • the potential degree of loss resulting from a particular hazard or set of hazards of a given magnitude • the potential for harm • something that is constructed socially • the inverse of capability (coping, resilience).
  15. 15. UNESCO / UNDRO (1982) Definitions of Hazard and Risk Terminology Vulnerability (V): the degree of loss to a given element or set of elements at risk resulting from the occurrence of a hazardous phenomenon of a given magnitude. It is expressed on a scale from 0 (no damage) to 1 (total loss)
  16. 16. Vulnerability Total: life is generally precarious Residual: caused by lack of modernisation Newly generated: caused by changes in circumstances Delinquent: caused by corruption, negligence, etc. Economic: people lack adequate occupation Technological technocratic: caused by the riskiness of technology
  17. 17. Primary • cause and effect Secondary • interaction of causes • coincidences Complex • complicated interactions VULNERABILITY
  18. 18. (Hazard x Vulnerability x Exposure) Resilience = Risk [ → Impact → Response] Hazard x (Vulnerability / Resilience) [x Exposure] = Risk [ → Impact → Response] ....alternatively:-
  19. 19. VulnerabilityHazard An asset is not vulnerable unless it is threatened by something A hazard is not hazardous unless it threatens something RISK Extreme events Elements at risk Resilience Exposure
  20. 20. Disaster management Emergency management Crisis management Risk management Vulnerability management Hypothetical Concrete Concentrated Diffuse
  21. 21. Verticalaxisscales: Hazard:probabilityofoccurrence Vulnerability:potentialdamage Risk:valueofprobablecostsandlosses Severity Risk as product of hazard and vulnerability Total annual predicted costs and losses Rising vulnerability with increasing seriousness of potential consequences Falling hazard with diminishing probability of occurrence Fat-tailed distribution
  22. 22. The role of perception
  23. 23. Risk amplification factors Risk mitigation factors Total vulnerability Risk perception factors- +positivenegative DIALECTIC
  24. 24. Causes of disaster natural geophysical, technological, social History single and cumulative impact of past disasters Human cultures constraints and opportunities IMPACTS Adaptation to risk RESILIENCE
  25. 25. Diffusion of information Perceptual filter Cultural filter Emergency not decoded Emergency decoded Ignorance Images of reality Symbolic constructions Enlightenment
  26. 26. Long term Short term Emic components Etic components METAMORPHOSIS OF CULTURE Experiences of culture [mass-media and consumer culture] Accumulated cultural traits and beliefs Inherited cultural background Ideological (non-scientific) interpretations of disaster Learned (scientific) interpretations of disaster
  27. 27. Value system Family culture Work culture Peer group culture Personal culture National culture Regional culture
  28. 28. Technology organisations safety culture Ethnology societies community culture Psychology ethnic groups individual culture Communication mass media multicultural societies
  29. 29. Filter Perception Culture Decision Action Result Positive Negative Risk Accurate Inaccurate
  30. 30. Technology as risk mitigation Technology as a source of vulnerability Research, development and investment in technology individual family peer group organisation community society international Culturalfilter Sociocentrism Technocentrism
  31. 31. Cultural filter Risk management practices Benign Malignant Technology as a source of risk reduction Technology as an inadvertent source of risk Technology as a deliberate source of risk Ceaseless development of technology
  32. 32. Large disaster Increased expenditure Return of complacency Risk-expenditure cycle Deaths, injuries, hardship, damage, disruption Review Reduced riskNo disaster Reduced expenditure Increased risk
  33. 33. Disaster Public outcry Rhetoric Logic Laws Safety culture The evolution of a safety culture
  34. 34. What exactly is resilience?
  35. 35. Vulnerability = 1 / resilience Resilience: mechanisms for avoiding impacts or absorbing them by coping Coping strategies: • indigenous • imported
  36. 36. What is resilience [resiliency]? • a combination of resistance and adaptation (coping, capacity, capability) • ability to maintain livelihoods and tenor of life in the face of disaster shocks • local autonomy and self-sufficiency.
  37. 37. Attitude The ingredients of resilience
  38. 38. • robustness: resist stress without loss of function • redundancy: ability to continue functioning during periods of disruption • ingenuity: ability to identify problems and mobilise resources • rapidity: ability to satisfy objectives and priorities so as to reduce losses. The four dimensions of RESILIENCE:-
  39. 39. Recovery and reconstruction Mitigation and resilience Preparation and mobilisation Emergency intervention Quiescence Crisis The disaster cycle
  40. 40. needs to be shortenedneeds to be lengthened preparation for the next event warning and evacuation recovery and reconstruction repair of basic services emergency management and rescue isolation impact needs to be strengthenedRisk reduction and disaster mitigation
  41. 41. Conclusions
  42. 42. Disaster opens a window of opportunity for positive change and greater security
  43. 43. The optimistic view
  44. 44. What is sustainable vulnerability reduction? • it is centred upon the local level (but is harmonised from above) • through consultation it has the support and involvement of the population • plans tackle all the phases of the disaster cycle - in an integrative way • it is a fundamental, every-day service for the population and is taken seriously.
  45. 45. HUMAN CONSEQUENCES OF DISASTER “ORTHODOX” MODEL PHYSICAL EVENT HUMAN VULNERABILITY “RADICAL CRITIQUE” (K. HEWITT et al.) HUMAN CONSEQUENCES OF DISASTER HUMAN VULNERABILITY PHYSICAL EVENT PROPOSAL FOR A NEW MODEL HUMAN CONSEQUENCES OF DISASTER HUMAN VULNERABILITY CULTURE HISTORY PHYSICAL EVENTS CONTEXT & CONSEQUENCES
  46. 46. Resilience against disasters: Ten suggestions for action
  47. 47. Organised non-structural protection Enhanced structural protection Planning, warning and preparedness Fusion with sustainability agenda Policy outcomes Protection strategy
  48. 48. Tell people what to do in a crisis.
  49. 49. Develop urban search and rescue capacity on site.
  50. 50. Reduce non-structural as well as structural hazards.
  51. 51. Plan flexibly.
  52. 52. Create networks.
  53. 53. Encourage governance.
  54. 54. Adapt and disseminate good practice.
  55. 55. Ensure that Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) programmes are sustainable
  56. 56. Create a strategy for recovering from the next disaster.
  57. 57. Create a culture of resilience against disasters.
  58. 58. ...and avoid the myth of panic: it should not be treated as a relevant factor in emergency planning
  59. 59. Exposure Sensitivity Capacity to adapt VULNERA- BILITY Dimensions of vulnerability: • exposure • sensitivity • capacity to adapt Components of the dimensions Measures of the components
  60. 60. Vulnerability • Dimensions • Components • Measures Exposure Sensitivity Capacity to adapt VULNERA- BILITY Physical dimensions Age of the infrastructure Age and income of the population Demo- graphy Technology Res- ponse Management structureAccess to information and technology Exposed res- ources Exposed population Intensity Frequency Location Number Wealth and well being Tax revenues Emergency plans Level of education Information services
  61. 61. Analysis • registered • archived • forgotten • ignored Vulnerability maintained - • utilised • adopted • learned Disaster risk reduced + Lessons Past events The process of disaster risk reduction (DRR)
  62. 62. A guide to recognizing vulnerability in the field
  63. 63. How to estimate vulnerability in the field Elements: • buildings and physical structures • lifelines and infrastructure • patterns of activity that put people at risk • perceptions of hazard • concentrations and patterns of elements at risk.
  64. 64. NB: Most of the following slides show post hoc indications of vulnerability.
  65. 65. Squatter settlement in Bangladesh Flood level Normal river level Rather than mitigating the sources of vulnerability to disaster, globalisation is maintaining, exporting and reinforcing them by its divide-and-rule strategies
  66. 66. Peruvian Andes, Eastern Cordillera Rock debris slide-fall Destroyed houses
  67. 67. The 'megacity' problem
  68. 68. Tehran
  69. 69. Tehran
  70. 70. Kathmandu
  71. 71. Kathmandu
  72. 72. İstanbul
  73. 73. İstanbul
  74. 74. Tokyo
  75. 75. Poor building quality (low seismic resistance) Proximity to epicentre and fault rupture Topographic amplification Sedimentary amplification Q E T S Concentration of casualties C C = f { E,Q,S,T } Deaths Injuries Q E T S Vulnerability to earthquakes
  76. 76. 'Window' of active fault with mullion slickensides and normal (vertical downwards) displacement Seismic consolidation- compaction subsidence at fault boundary
  77. 77. Vulnerability in the connection between wall and joist leads to collapse of the structure in an earthquake
  78. 78. Random rubble masonry with powdery lime mortar is a major source of vulnerability in historic and old buildings.
  79. 79. Collapse often begins at roof level if roof structure is too rigid and poorly tied to vertical load-bearing members.
  80. 80. Cornices,parapets and other façade details are particularly vulnerable to damage in earthquakes. [four people were crushed to death here]
  81. 81. Inadequately constructed frame buildings are vulnerable to progressive collapse.
  82. 82. Stairwells are often the most vulnerable part of the building during earthquakes, and the first part that people use as they try to escape.
  83. 83. Zone of interference Differential movements
  84. 84. Pre-earthquake roof-line Replacement stonework
  85. 85. Self-protection during earthquakes and tornadoes is NOT fostered by the myth that it is safe to shelter under desks and tables.
  86. 86. Rim of caldera blasted apart in A.D. 79 Cone active A.D. 1631-1944 Europe's most densely populated municipality (population 80,000 in 4.5 sq.km)
  87. 87. 0 1 2 3 4 5 km Tyrrhenian Sea Mt Vesuvius Portici Ercolano ( and Herculaneum) Mt Somma Naples Barra Pompeii Torre del Greco Torre Annunziata San Giuseppe Vesuviano Main lava flow, pyroclastic flow and lahar hazard areas Densely settled areas Tephra fallout areas Population at risk min: 650,000 max: 3.1 million
  88. 88. Somma-Vesuvius Portici (pop. 80,000) 1631 pyroclastic flow
  89. 89. 1631 pyroclastic flow (4000 dead in Portici)
  90. 90. recent flank cone 19th century lava flows homes of 1-3 million people Mount Vesuvius
  91. 91. Forward thrust Nodes are first to fail Columns shear through under sustained pressure Landslide direction
  92. 92. Spontaneous toppling failure in unconsolidated sands Backward rotation of toppled blocks Bedrooms where four people died
  93. 93. Spontaneous total failure of foundations Spontaneous total failure of r-c frame bldg ...with some forward thrust
  94. 94. Tranquil Alpine scene ...with debris flow ...and several brand-new hotels at its foot
  95. 95. ...and boulders that went right through!
  96. 96. david.alexander@ucl.ac.uk emergency-planning.blogspot.com Presentations can be downloaded from:- www.slideshare.com/dealexander Thank you for your attention!
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