Urban seismic risk index developed for Medellín, Colombia

A paper documenting the development of an Urban seismic risk index for Medellín, Colombia, based on probabilistic loss and casualties estimations is available online at Natural Hazards. IRDR’s ICoE in Understanding Risk and Safety was a leading partner in the multi-year, multi-researcher and multi-stakeholder effort. This outstanding contribution to the field is an example of the “multi-disciplinary, participatory” research that IRDR promotes as the best way to increase understanding in the complex and emerging field of urban resilience.

The paper is the result of a complete evaluation of seismic risk, including a holistic approach to risk based on probabilistic risk assessment and use indicators (attempting a comprehensive view) and is a summary of the work in the city of Medellin, Colombia, that was included in the recent publication “A Guide to Measuring Urban Risk Resilience: Principles, Tools and Practice of Urban Indicators” (July 2015).  It includes applications from Istanbul, Turkey; Mumbai, India; Quezon City, Philippines; and Bogotá, Medellin, and Manizales Colombia.

Given UNISDR’s current activity developing indicators, and similar work at the Joint Research Centre, the IDB, the SARA project of GEM, as well as IRDR’s focus on integrated research, this paper and guidebook demonstrate that a holistic approach to risk assessment, using probabilistic models and indicators, is possible.