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UK - Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

An Interdisciplinary Approach to Understanding Past, Present and Future Flood Risk in Viet Nam

Disclaimer: The data for this page has been produced from IATI data published by UK - Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. Please contact them (Show Email Address) if you have any questions about their data.

Project Data Last Updated: 27/08/2020

IATI Identifier: GB-GOV-13-FUND--Newton-NE_S003061_1

Description

The impact of hydro-meteorological hazards is jointly determined by environmental and social factors. These interactions between environmental change and human responses generate great uncertainty when evaluating household vulnerability. In low-income countries, hydro-meteorological risks have been evolving due to climate change, changes in agricultural exploitation, changes in household mitigation strategies and waterway engineering activities related to hydropower and agriculture. In addition, flood risk itself affects the economic decisions of households in the short- and longer-run. The proposed research will advance our understanding of how hydro-physical and socio-economic conditions and processes interact. Our novel, interdisciplinary approach will advance current knowledge and methods in both the physical and social sciences through the development of: 1) A technique for producing socio-physical flood models that account for interactions and feedback between social actors and physical systems; 2) A method for generating high-resolution social vulnerability maps based solely on remotely sensed data. Within the context of Vietnam specifically our research will generate: 3) Detailed, multidimensional models of household-level risk and resilience strategies within communes in the Central Highlands; 4) High resolution maps of social vulnerability in the Central Highlands validated with household-level survey data; 5) A socio-physical flood risk model for the Central Highlands; 6) Scenario projections that outline potential future risks based on possible changes in key hydro-physical parameters, socioeconomic conditions, land use, household mitigation strategies, and public interventions. Our geographical focus on the Central Highlands is informed by a clear dearth of recent research into flood risk in this area relative to other regions, such as the Mekong Delta and coastal areas in recent years, and by the major socio-economic changes affecting the region (rural-urban migration, changes in cropping patterns and investment, intensification of floodplain activity). Our models, maps and scenarios for communities in the Central Highlands will be developed by integrating state-of-the-art hydrodynamic flood models, satellite imagery, detailed land-use maps, household survey data and field experiments. The results will improve our ability to predict and mitigate the impacts of hydrological hazards in the Central Highlands of Vietnam specifically, but also in other regions affected by similar hazards. To our knowledge, our proposal is the first one to combine a state-of-the-art hydrodynamic flood model with data on resilience strategies and economic activities that is geo-located at the household level anywhere in the world. This contribution will allow us to incorporate household resilience when projecting future scenarios and thus make a significant contribution to policy-relevant knowledge, while also providing new modelling methods that could be applied in other regions.

Objectives

This project is the first attempt at combining state-of-the-art hydrodynamic flood models with high-resolution data on economic activity, mitigation and coping strategies of households. Studying how hydro-physical and socio-economic conditions and processes interact is important because (i) a large component of vulnerability to floods is explained by assets and activities at stake and (ii) households adjust their behaviour to flood risk. The proposed research will address this challenge by combining state-of-the-art flood models with a novel high-quality household survey. This main methodological contribution will allow the production of a comprehensive index of socio-economic vulnerability, aggregated from household-specific exposure. By incorporating the household response to flood risk, future scenarios and policy interventions will be evaluated accounting for strategic response of economic activities, risk-mitigating instruments and post-disaster support. The research contribution can be summarized by the following aims: Aim 1: Integrate a state-of-the-art hydrodynamic flood model, satellite imagery, detailed land-use maps, and household survey data to develop a novel socio-physical flood model of the Central Highlands and to produce a set of risk projections based upon a range of possible future scenarios. Aim 2: Evaluate all aspects of the individual household response to flood risk in the short- and medium-run and assess how their responses aggregate at the commune level, through the estimation of social multipliers across households and heterogeneity in household adaptation strategies. Aims 1 and 2 will be met by undertaking the following key objectives as a set of five linked work packages. O1. Collect unique household data identifying the household resilience strategies, social links between households of the same commune, and the specific household flood exposure through the geo-location of their assets and economic activities; O2. Develop an integrated socio-hydrodynamic model of the Central Highlands, micro-validated with satellite imagery and survey data; O3. Evaluate the high-dimensional effects of flood risk through the identification of household resilience strategies (and their heterogeneity) and social multipliers across households of the same commune; construct flood vulnerability indicators and welfare estimates at the household level; O4. Develop and validate a low-dimensional approach to flood vulnerability mapping based on satellite imagery alone; O5. Project a series of future flood risk scenarios that incorporate a range of possible changes to key hydrophysical parameters, socioeconomic conditions, land use, household mitigation strategies, and public interventions to inform future policy and disaster risk reduction strategies.

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