System-Risk  - a large-scale systems approach to flood risk assessment and management.

System-Risk is a Marie-Skłodowska-Curie European Training Network which aims on developing and implementing a systems approach for large-scale flood risk assessment and management and provides a framework for training and career development of 15 Early Stage Researchers.

Particularly, national and regional policy development adhering to the solidarity principle anchored in the European Flood Directive as well as the insurance industry require tools to assess and manage flood risk at large scales, from the larger river basin to the European scale. Yet, the majority of flood research has centred on small- to meso-scale catchments and, to date, such requirements have usually been addressed by piecing together small-scale solutions.

Today, increased data availability, new numerical algorithms and dramatically higher computer performance enable large-scale analyses and modelling which were not feasible a few years ago.

System-Risk performs leading-edge research with spotlights on three essential pillars of flood risk research:

  • Risk chain: considering the complete risk chain from the Sources through the Pathways to the Receptors and Consequences.
  • Interactions: augmenting the ‚Source-Pathway-Receptors and Consequences‘ model by putting interactions centre stage and, in this way, replacing the traditional linear approach of the risk chain by a more realistic approach with interdependent linkages between physical and societal processes which finally shape the spatio-temporal flood risk.
  • Temporal dynamics: investigating the time-varying nature of flood risk and its components on different time scales as for instance hours to days when flood defence failures change flood probabilities, months to years when people learn from damaging floods and improve private precaution and decades to centuries when human settlements in floodplains evolve.

System risk is composed of 15 Early Stage Research Projects (ESRs) organised in three scientific workpackages complemented by training, dissemenination and management.

The scientific WPs beam the ‚risk chain – interactions – dynamics‘ spotlights on the ‚Atmosphere-Catchment-System‘ (WP1), ‚River-Dike-Floodplain System‘ (WP2) and the ‚Socio-Economic System‘ (WP3).

System risk brings together research and training at ten leading centres of flood research in Europe and embeds partnerships with eight partners from the industry and administration in five countries.