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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceArticle

Social Vulnerability Assessment for Flood Risk Analysis

Department of Geography and Geology, Faculty of Environmental Sciences, Universidad de León, Campus de Vegazana, sn, 24072 León, Spain
Department of Geography, Universitat de les Illes Balears, Edifici Guillem Colom Casasnovas, Campus de la Universitat de les Illes Balears (UIB), Carretera de Valldemossa, km 7.5, 07122 Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2020, 12(2), 558;
Received: 20 December 2019 / Revised: 29 January 2020 / Accepted: 13 February 2020 / Published: 17 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flood Risk Assessments: Applications and Uncertainties)
This paper proposes a methodology for the analysis of social vulnerability to floods based on the integration and weighting of a range of exposure and resistance (coping capacity) indicators. It focuses on the selection and characteristics of each proposed indicator and the integration procedure based on the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) on a large scale. The majority of data used for the calculation of the indicators comes from open public data sources, which allows the replicability of the method in any area where the same data are available. To demonstrate the feasibility of the method, a study case is presented. The flood social vulnerability assessment focuses on the municipality of Ponferrada (Spain), a medium-sized town that has high exposure to floods due to potential breakage of the dam located upstream. A detailed mapping of the social vulnerability index is generated at the urban parcel scale, which shows an affected population of 34,941 inhabitants. The capability of working with such detailed units of analysis for an entire medium-sized town provides a valuable tool to support flood risk planning and management. View Full-Text
Keywords: vulnerability indicators; vulnerability cartography; flood risk; AHP; local analysis; open public data sources vulnerability indicators; vulnerability cartography; flood risk; AHP; local analysis; open public data sources
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Tascón-González, L.; Ferrer-Julià, M.; Ruiz, M.; García-Meléndez, E. Social Vulnerability Assessment for Flood Risk Analysis. Water 2020, 12, 558.

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