Anna Scolobig

Anna Scolobig
University of Geneva | UNIGE · Institute of Environmental Sciences

PhD

About

98
Publications
49,165
Reads
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Introduction
I am a disaster and risk researcher with social science background. With 18 years of experience on social vulnerability, adaptation and resilience, my work focuses on responses to environmental change, with an emphasis on improving decision making processes and governance. Presently I work at the University of Geneva (Switzerland) and at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Vienna (Austria). Contact details: Anna.Scolobig@unige.ch; scolobig@iiasa.ac.at
Additional affiliations
November 2013 - present
ETH Zurich
Position
  • Senior Researcher
January 2010 - September 2013
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis
Position
  • PostDoc Position

Publications

Publications (98)
Article
Full-text available
There is growing recognition that using the properties of nature through nature-based solutions (NBS) can help to provide viable and cost-effective solutions to a wide range of societal challenges, including disaster risk reduction (DRR). However, NBS realization depends critically on the governance framework that enables the NBS policy process. Dr...
Article
Full-text available
Scholars have unravelled the complexities and underlying uncertainties in coupled human and water systems in various fields and disciplines. These complexities, however, are not always reflected in the way in which the dynamics of human–water systems are modelled. One reason is the lack of social data time series, which may be provided by longitudi...
Article
Full-text available
High-impact weather events cause considerable social and economic harm, with these effects likely to increase as climate change drives extremes and population growth leads to commensurate growth in exposure. As part of the World Meteorological Organization’s World Weather Research Programme, the 10-year High-Impact Weather Project (HIWeather) facil...
Chapter
Full-text available
In this chapter, we explore the challenges of achieving a level of awareness of disaster risk, by each person or organisation receiving a warning, which allows them to take actions to reduce potential impacts while being consistent with the warning producer’s capabilities and cost-effectiveness considerations. Firstly we show how people respond to...
Article
The European Union (EU) has firmly positioned itself as a global leader in promoting and implementing nature-based solutions (NBS). The recently released EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change, and Forest Strategy - all representing key pillars of the ambitious European Green Deal (EGD) - rely on NBS to both pre...
Chapter
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Quest’articolo presenta alcune riflessioni su un processo partecipato finalizzato all’elaborazione di un piano di mitigazione del rischio da frana per la città di Nocera Inferiore (Regione Campania). La creazione di una comunità estesa di pari ha permesso lo sviluppo di attività di cooperazione tra ricercatori e residenti. Durante il processo, i ri...
Article
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The severe impact of global crises, such as COVID-19 and climate change, is plausibly reshaping the way in which people perceive risks. In this paper, we examine and compare how global crises and local disasters influence public perceptions of multiple hazards in Italy and Sweden. To this end, we integrate information about the occurrence of hazard...
Preprint
Full-text available
The severe impact of global crises, such as COVID-19 and climate change, is plausibly reshaping the way in which people perceive risks. In this paper, we examine and compare how global crises and local disasters influence public perceptions of multiple hazards in Italy and Sweden. To this end, we integrate information about the occurrence of hazard...
Preprint
This session will consider enablers and barriers to the practice of adaptation drawing on European experience, and particularly the UK Climate Change Risk Assessments. In this session we will hear about the development of practical transformational approaches for Clyde Estuary in Scotland for Clyde Rebuilt as well as organisational and institutiona...
Preprint
Full-text available
Numerous scholars have unravelled the complexities and underlying uncertainties of coupled human and water systems in various fields and disciplines. These complexities, however, are not always reflected in the way in which the dynamics of human-water systems are modelled. One reason is the lack of social data times series, which may be provided by...
Article
Insights into the heterogeneity of human behaviours and attitudes toward risk require the understanding of the role played by a plurality of factors, such as risk awareness and trust. However, our knowledge of the interplay of these factors is limited, as is our knowledge of the patterns in risk attitudes and behaviours and their evolution over tim...
Article
In recent years, the sharp increase in the use of social media by the public during major natural disasters has attracted the attention of various public agencies and safety organizations. Social media present a potential alternative communication system not only for disseminating information to the public, but also for receiving information from t...
Article
After a strong earthquake, the rapid identification of the extent of the affected area is the most crucial task of civil protection authorities. The information provided by those directly affected by an event makes the difference since it offers the opportunity to take advantage of direct observations and, in the case alert systems are available, t...
Chapter
Full-text available
Co-production is suited for problems where consensus is low, uncertainty high and joint action is needed. We focus on conflicts in decision co-production and argue that conflicts arise primarily from tensions between three intertwined elements: differences in values, knowledge and preferences of stakeholders; uneven distribution of resources, statu...
Article
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When public agencies provide information provision to help people make better decisions, they often face the choice between economy and completeness. For weather services warning people of high-impact weather events, this choice is between offering standard warnings (SWs) only of the weather event itself, such as wind-speed, or also describing the...
Article
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Affluence and vulnerability are often seen as opposite sides of a coin—with affluence generally understood as reducing forms of vulnerability through increased resilience and adaptive capacity. However, in the context of climate change and an increase in associated hazards and disasters, we suggest the need to re-examine this dynamic relationship—a...
Article
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The sharp increase in the use of smartphones and rapid advances in mobile communication offer new ways to warn the public about developing natural or technological hazards. So far, the effectiveness of different warning types, namely standard and impact-based warnings (SW and IBW), were mainly tested in scenario-based experiments and not in real li...
Article
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Understanding what makes people vulnerable to flooding is key in informing the risk management process. Non-structural measures, such as risk communication, can reduce vulnerability by improving flood risk awareness, but they require a deep understanding of which factors influence risk awareness, and how. We analysed and untangled the role of exper...
Article
The continued rise of global disaster losses pushes our attention yet further to the causal factors that drive risks, beyond the frame of standardised risk assessment models. A key gap in our understanding of the causality of disasters remains establishing how spatially and temporally distant factors – ‘root causes’ – drive local risk conditions. T...
Article
Full-text available
Natural hazards and climate-related disasters disregard political borders, where additional barriers can complicate mitigation, response and recovery efforts within and between the sectors of Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR). The ESPREssO Project (Enhancing Synergies for Disaster Prevention in the European Union) ai...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. Informing people of an impending hazard can lead them to adopt behavior to mitigate the harm. In this study we examine whether giving more information, and giving it earlier, leads to a greater behavioral response. Our results, which are contextually dependent, show that providing more information has no effect on behavior, and that longe...
Article
Full-text available
The existing implementation gap currently dividing the policy domains of Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), can be attributed to institutional barriers; diverging political priorities; inter-sectoral misperceptions and miscommunication; unequal funding sources and varying operational timescales at national, European...
Technical Report
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The Policy Business Forum (PBF) consists of Nature-based Solutions (NBS) experts and knowledgeable stakeholders at the international, European, and national scale. The main aim of the PBF is to explore innovative ways to strengthen the science-policy-business nexus in order to exploit opportunities and overcome barriers in NBS implementation in the...
Article
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Hydrogeological hazards are increasingly causing damage worldwide due to climatic and socio-economic changes. Building resilient communities is crucial to reduce potential losses. To this end, one of the first steps is to understand how people perceive potential threats around them. This study aims at exploring how risk awareness of, and preparedne...
Article
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Private risk reduction behaviours can significantly reduce the negative impacts of flooding and flash floods. Over the past decades, researchers have used various socio-cognitive models or threat and coping mechanisms to explain individual protective behaviours. However, these models ignore the fact that people are not equally ready to act upon a d...
Article
Full-text available
This paper is the outcome of a community initiative to identify major unsolved scientific problems in hydrology motivated by a need for stronger harmonisation of research efforts. The procedure involved a public consultation through on-line media, followed by two workshops through which a large number of potential science questions were collated, p...
Article
Full-text available
Private risk reduction behaviours can significantly reduce the negative impacts of flooding and flash floods. Over the past decades, researchers have used various socio-cognitive models or threat/coping mechanisms to explain individual protective behaviours. However, these models ignore that people are not equally ready to act upon a danger and the...
Presentation
Full-text available
Disaster risk reduction and climate change adaption involve a variety of different stakeholders from various professional backgrounds, with often divergent concerns, and sometimes competing agendas. Their activities may also be carried out within different organizational frameworks, which in turn would vary from country to country. Such complexity...
Research
in World Bank, 2019. Weathering the Change: How to Improve Hydromet Services in Developing Countries?. Washington, DC: World Bank. Freely available at https://www.gfdrr.org/en/publication/weathering-change-how-improve-hydromet-services-developing-countries
Article
In the past four decades, the private weather forecast sector has been developing next to the National Meteorological and Hydrological Service, resulting in additional weather providers. This plurality has led to a critical duplication of public weather warnings: For a specific event, different providers disseminate warnings that are more or less s...
Research
Full-text available
The ESPREssO Vision Paper is one of the key outcomes of the project. Its aim is to support the preparation of the Horizon Europe Framework Programme 2021-2030 by identifying some future research challenges in the field of natural hazards and disaster risk management, in relation to the priorities defined by the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Re...
Research
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As a final product, the ESPREssO project has compiled a comprehensive set of guidelines, synthesizing the findings from the many, and diverse, activities of the consortium. The guidelines are based on best practices identified in the Action Data Base; on recommendations identified in literature as well as in our national reports; and on the many us...
Research
Full-text available
Dieser Bericht stellt den Beitrag des ESPREssO-Projekts „Enhancing Synergies for Disaster Prevention in the European Union“ zu einer neuen strategischen Vision für DRR und CCA in Europa und zur Förderung neuer Ideen für die Ausrichtung und Zielsetzung der Naturgefahrenforschung und Politik der nächsten zehn Jahre dar. Im Rahmen des Projekts wurden...
Research
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Le document d’orientation ESPREssO vise à soutenir la préparation du Programme-cadre Horizon Europe en identifiant les futurs défis de la recherche dans le domaine des risques naturels et de la gestion des risques, en relation avec les priorités définies par le Cadre d'action de Sendai pour la réduction des risques de catastrophe et le plan d'actio...
Research
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Ces recommandations combinées au document d’Orientation ESPREssO (délivrable D5.5 « ESPREssO Vision Paper ») forment les conclusions du projet ESPREssO - « Enhancing synergies for disaster prevention in the European Union » (Améliorer les synergies pour la prévention des catastrophes au sein de l‘Union européenne), une mesure de coordination et de...
Research
Full-text available
Diese Leitlinien stellen gemeinsam mit dem ESPREssO Visionspapier (Arbeitsergebnis D5.5 „ESPREssO Visionspapier“) das Endergebnis des ESPREssO-Projekts „Enhancing Synergies for Disaster Prevention in the European Union“ dar, einer Koordinations- und Unterstützungsmaßnahme, die im Rahmen des Programms H2020 von DG RESEARCH finanziert wurde. Das ESPr...
Article
Full-text available
One common approach to cope with floods is the implementation of structural flood protection measures, such as levees or flood-control reservoirs, which substantially reduce the probability of flooding at the time of implementation. Numerous scholars have problematized this approach. They have shown that increasing the levels of flood protection ca...
Article
Bad weather continues to not only inflict damage on property, but kill and injure people, despite significant advances in the predictive power of meteorological warnings. There is evidence that people tend to under-react to weather warning information, to a large extent because of insufficient understanding of the impacts that severe weather events...
Article
Full-text available
One common approach to cope with floods is the implementation of structural flood protection measures, such as levees or flood-control reservoirs, which substantially reduce the probability of flooding at the time of implementation. Numerous scholars have problematized this approach. They have shown that increasing the levels of flood protection ca...
Article
This paper analyses the underlying factors of a disaster ‘recovery process’. Based on a household survey, conducted ten months after the 2015 South Indian floods in two affected constituencies (Mylapore and Velachery) of Chennai, residents were asked how long they took to recover from the floods and whether they took actively part in the recovery p...
Article
Full-text available
One common approach to cope with floods is the implementation of structural flood protection measures, such as levees or flood-control reservoirs, which substantially reduce the probability of flooding at the time of implementation. Numerous scholars have problematized this approach. They have shown that increasing the levels of flood protection ca...
Article
Full-text available
Multi-risk environments are characterized by domino effects that often amplify the overall risk. Those include chains of hazardous events and increasing vulnerability, among other types of correlations within the risk process. The recently developed methods for multi-hazard and risk assessment integrate interactions between different risks by using...
Article
Many countries, regions and towns around the world experience lack of action or delayed actions in the implementation of disaster risk reduction measures. One of the common causal explanations is the insufficient funding available to reduce risk, especially at the local level. However, so far few studies have provided an in-depth analysis of the ro...
Article
In many countries, any substantial increase in the share of renewable energy will require a reinforcement of the electricity transmission grid. We examine the value added by Multi-Criteria Decision Aiding (MCDA), which may support decisions on corridor alternatives for grid reinforcement by including stakeholder preferences. We present the results...
Article
Full-text available
During a participatory process in Gmunden, Austria, the organizational and responsibility-sharing arrangements for a landslide warning system proved to be contested issues. While questions on the warning system technology and the distribution of information, including the alarm for evacuation, could be resolved with the support of experts, controve...
Article
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This paper explores warning system options in the landslide-prone community of Gmunden/Gschliefgraben in Upper Austria. It describes stakeholder perspectives on the technical, social, economic, legal and institutional characteristics of a warning system. The perspectives differ on issues such as responsibility allocation in decisions regarding warn...
Conference Paper
Im Sinne eines integrativen Ansatzes werden bei der Entwicklung eines Frühwarnsystems zusätzlich zu den geologischen und technischen Dimensionen auch institutionelle und soziokulturelle Aspekte miteinbezogen. Durch den Austausch zwischen Wissenschaftlern, politischen Entscheidungsträgern und Betroffenen wird sichergestellt, dass die Gestaltung eine...
Article
Full-text available
Including stakeholder perspectives in environmental decision making is in many countries a legal requirement and is widely seen as beneficial as it can help increase decision legitimacy, likelihood of implementation, and quality of the outcome. Whereas the theoretical literature on stakeholder engagement is large, less attention has been devoted to...
Article
Full-text available
The importance of grid extension in Europe has risen in the last decade as a result of an aging grid and the energy transition toward a decarbonized electricity sector. While grid extension is claimed as necessary, stakeholder opposition has slowed down this process. To alleviate this tension, increased stakeholder participation is considered as a...
Article
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to present the results of a pilot study involving high school teachers in natural sciences. The aim was to foster critical thinking about cascading hazards via the use of reasoned imagination. Cascading phenomena can lead to extreme catastrophes and are thus a challenge for disaster prevention and management....
Article
Full-text available
Purpose Urban resilience is becoming increasingly important due to increasing degree of urbanization and a combination of several factors affecting urban vulnerability. Urban resilience is also understood as a capacity of a system to prepare, respond and recover from multi-hazard threats. The purpose of multi-risk approach (MRA) is to take into con...
Article
Full-text available
With the escalating costs of landslides, the challenge for local authorities is to develop institutional arrangements for landslide risk management that are viewed as efficient, feasible and fair by those affected. For this purpose, the participation of stakeholders in the decision-making process is mandated by the European Union as a way of improv...
Article
There is an increasing demand for improvement of the quality of decisions about flood risk mitigation by fostering public participation in decision-making. However, the extent and way in which formalized participation guarantees good outcomes is still a matter of discussion. This paper analyses different approaches to decision-making for flood risk...
Book
Heavy precipitation events (HPE) and flash floods (FF) are common phenomena over the Mediterranean region. The peculiar topography and geographical location of this area make it especially favorable to the occurrence of intense events. The Mediterranean Sea acts as a vast heat andmoisture reservoir from which baroclinic atmospheric systems pump par...
Article
Geothermal energy is an essential component for the successful decarbonization of the global energy supply. Its success will depend both on technological progress and on public reaction to this technology. The goal of this study is to analyze how deep geothermal energy has been discussed in the mass media in Switzerland, with an emphasis on the act...
Article
Full-text available
Inadequate, misinterpreted, or missing risk and crisis communication may be a reason for practitioners, and sometimes science advisors, to become the subjects of criminal investigations. This work discusses the legal consequences of inadequate risk communication in these situations. After presenting some cases, the discussion focuses on three criti...
Article
Full-text available
Inadequate, misinterpreted, or missing risk and crisis communication may be a reason for practitioners, and sometimes science advisors, to become the subjects of criminal investigations. This work discusses the legal consequences of inadequate risk communication in these situations. After presenting some cases, the discussion focuses on three criti...
Article
This paper demonstrates an innovative role for experts in supporting participatory policy processes with an application to landslide risk management in the Italian town of Nocera Inferiore. Experts co-produce risk mitigation options based on their specialized knowledge taking account of local knowledge and values by directly coupling stakeholder di...
Article
European Union directives as well as national legislation are placing great emphasis on the inclusion of stakeholder perspectives in the governance of risks from natural hazards. This should help decision makers formulate better policies. However, to date, there is little information on stakeholders’ perspectives with respect to landslide risk gove...
Article
Full-text available
Despite continuing technological advancement in hazard and vulnerability assessment, risk modelling and hazard mitigation techniques, losses to disasters associated with natural hazards continue and in some cases are increasing across Europe and worldwide. This paper focuses on the need to bridge the gap between technical solutions and the sociopol...