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Natural Risk Zones - Definition "Risk Zone"

Katharina Lupp
By Katharina Lupp Replies (4)

Dear all,

I am experiencing some trouble with the data specification of “Natural Risk Zones”.

How are the "Risk Zones" defined? If the Hazard Area expresses the area, where the hazard occurs but does not necessarily cause damage, the risk zone must be smaller than the hazard area, since the Risk Zone exists of objects that are subjects to potential losses. If that is the case, how does the Risk Zone differ from the "Exposed Elements" feature types, which are vulnerable objects, thus subjects to potential losses? The figure on page 3 of the data specification "Natural Risk Zones" puzzles me even more. In this drawing different risk zones are connected.  Shall I connect risk zones or not? On which rule is the connection based?

From my point of view, it would be logic, if a Risk Zone is a Multi Polygon, which is harvested by the Exposed Elements and is divided by a specific hazard of a geographic region, like a river or a mountain etc.

This proposal is not realizable in accordance with the data schema, since a Multi-Polygon is not an option to define a Risk Zone

Have I misinterpreted anything? Has anybody an idea how to handle my problems?

Thanks and kind regards,

Katharina Lupp



    The stoichiometry of the subject makes Risk a unique (meaning "single") concept of its own; a number with units (qualitative or quantitative), hence multi-polygon does not appropriately address the issue (although it might suit the method to obtain such feature). When a geometry is a 100% match, an inspire id should be used.

  • Katharina Lupp

    By Katharina Lupp

    Thanks for your response.
    I still don´t understand the difference between a Risk Zone and an Exposed Element, if the geometry is the same as the Exposed Element geometry. I thought that a Risk Zone is the sum of the Exposed Elements in one Hazard Area, thus Multi Polygon --> means all Exposed Elements in one Risk Zone. If we model all Exposed Elemets as seperate object (polygon), there´d be no additional value in the Risk Zone (no difference in the geometry). Therefore we would have the same amount of Exposed Elements as Risk Zones.

    You have said, that the unique meaning implies the LevelOrIntensity. But in the Data Model the information is also given by the feature type Exposed Elements --> attribute: Vulnerability Assessment --> LevelOrIntensity

    So what is the additional information for the user, if he looks for the Risk Zone?



    EE would show the distribution of "value" (an abstraction of wealth, services, insured-value, whatever) and an assessment of vulnerability (fragility of something against a given hazard) whereas RZ would show the distribution of damage after a given hazard.

    RZ is not a sum of coverages or attributes within equal geometries, RZ is the result of an analysis (very likely non linear, very likely showing a threshold-like behaviour, always positive and with upper limit; hence complex) describing the interaction of hazard forces (physical, chemical or other) with the properties of objects (wood, steel, whatever), ultimately providing the cost of returning "the object" to "normal" conditions or the cost of compensation, or other sources of expenses (called generically  "damage"). EE can be actual objects (things you can touch, e.g. a bridge) or not (e.g. urban planning); fixed in space and time (buildings) or not (cars, people). Risk zone can never be touched or measured in real world because it is the output of an assessment.

    In order to provide a RZ there must exist at least one EE. This is a sort of double check to guarantee Risk as defined within INSPIRE is interoperable, given there are many interpretations out there of what is risk and what units should risk have. The equation must be balanced as in stoichiometry. Moreover, value of objects is likely dependant on the objective of the risk analysis, therefore, EE provides a background in order to appropriately understand risk beyond its units (context based). Eg. value of an EE could be linked to "total insured value" (not insured = value 0), hence risk would be suitable for insurers but not for spatial planners. Value of an EE could be "number of people", interesting for policy makers (just to mention one potential user) but it is likely not very meaningful for insurers, given the number of people is not a very good proxy to understand if they would be interested in getting insured.


  • Enrico Iredi

    Hello Johanna,

    although I have no knowledge of this topic. But when I think back to landscape planning. On the one hand there is a layer with usable areas (for example field, residential area, industrial area) and on the other hand a layer with HW100 areas. If you merge the two layers then you get n polygons, e.g. with the type of use residential area, which are located in the HW100 area. That should be the risk zones (= GM_Surface)?

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