06 October 2015
Brussels, Belgium

IIASA organizes stakeholder workshop on EU's financial vulnerability to flood risk

IIASA meets with key stakeholders to assess EU's financial vulnerability to flood risk and to investigate its disaster risk financing framework.

© Dtje | Dreamstime

© Dtje | Dreamstime

In the context of the EU FP7 ENHANCE project, researchers at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), in collaboration with partners, will meet with key stakeholders in Brussels on 6 October  to assess and discuss the financial vulnerability of the European Union to flood risk and investigate its disaster risk financing framework. The workshop is aimed at European policy makers, representatives of insurance and reinsurance companies, experts from Member States, and international organizations.

The main objectives of the workshop are: 

• Presenting and reflecting on the current financial capacity of the EU and its Member States to cope with natural disasters in light of climate and socio-economic change;

• Defining the potential roles of the EU in managing and financing flood risk, with special attention to the European Solidarity Fund (EUSF) and its recent reforms;

• Comparing different European national flood insurance systems with respect to robustness, equity and their contribution to risk reduction and climate adaptation.

Background information

Recent policy developments - including the consultation initiated by the European Commission’s green paper on insurance of natural and man-made disasters, as well as the reform process of the EUSF - highlighted the diverse views on disaster risk management in general and financing disaster losses in particular, for instance the adequacy of the insurance market to cover disaster losses in the EU and the efficiency of the EUSF. In fact, European governments typically still absorb a large portion of disaster losses, and even with backup from the EUSF, research has shown that many local insurers and governments, especially those of small and hazard-prone Member States, lack the capacity to cover large-scale and multiple disasters.

ENHANCE Project

IIASA is one of the principle partners within the ENHANCE project, leading various work packages, including: the development of probabilistic risk frameworks leading to single and multi-hazard scenarios; the review of economic instruments for risk reduction and risk financing, leading to a synthesis of economic instruments across case studies; and the study of specific linkages of current EU and country-level financing instruments such as the EUSF and its risk due to interdependent catastrophe events.

The ENHANCE team consists of scientific research institutes, public policy organizations (including UNISDR), private sector specialists and an NGO; this ensures societal relevance and the feasibility of implementation of deliverables. Public and private partners have been approached in 10 different case studies to develop multi-sector partnerships and test methods.


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Last edited: 09 October 2015

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