In the new initiative "CEDIM Forensic Disaster Analysis (CEDIM FDA)" CEDIM researchers will analyze disasters and their impacts in near real-time. The aims of CEDIM FDA are to identify major risk drivers and the root causes of disasters, and infer the implications for disaster mitigation. In this program, CEDIM will focus on disasters triggered by geophysical (earthquakes, volcanoes) and hydro-meteorological (floods, storms) extreme events.
The notion of "Forensic Disaster Investigations" has been coined by the Integrated Research on Disaster Risk (IRDR) initiative. It has been defined as an "approach to studying natural disasters that aims at uncovering the root causes of disasters through in-depth investigations" and that"will help build an understanding of how natural hazards do – or do not – become disasters" (www.irdrinternational.org).
CEDIM adopts this comprehensive understanding of disasters while incorporating a real-time component to impact assessment, complementing the IRDR activities. The core of CEDIM‘s new style of analysis is to examine disasters in an interdisciplinary manner with a focus on the complex interactions between (1) the natural hazard, (2) the technical installations, facilities, and infrastructures, and (3) the societal structures, institutions and capacities.
To conduct Forensic Disaster Analyses, CEDIM uses its broad interdisciplinary expertise and available in-house tools for conducting rapid assessments. In addition, in several research projects already existing methods and tools for rapid damage assessments are tested and further developed.
Disasters analyzed in CEDIM FDA
June flood 2013, Central Europe
Hurricane "Sandy", October 2012
Drought and Heat in the U.S., spring and summer 2012
M7.2 Van Earthquake (Eastern Turkey) of 23 Oct. 2011
The M7.2 Van Earthquake (Eastern Turkey) of 23 Oct. 2011 served as a first example for a forensic approach. Our team consisted of a seismologist, three engineers, a social scientist, an economist, and a meteorologist. Four reports have been produced: immediately after the event on the situation (24.10), a situation up-date (25.10), one addressing shelter issues, in comparison to previous Eastern Turkish Earthquakes (26.10), and a comprehensive overview report (02.11).
Further disaster reports
Taifun Saola, Philippines and Taiwan, 31 July to 3 August 2012, report as pdf
Earthquake sequence 20 May to 31 May 2012, Ferrara, Italy, report as pdf
Research in CEDIM for the new research focus CEDIM Forensic Disaster Analysis
|Loss assessment for earthquakes||go to project|
|Slip distribution||go to project|
|Forensic atmo||go to project|
|Rapid flood event analysis||go to project|
|Methodology for a (rapid) assessment of the economic impact of natural disasters: business and supply chain interruptions||go to project|
|Transportation Interruption||go to project|
| Crowd sourcing for disaster management
||go to project|
| Social sensors for rapid damage assessment in disaster management - combining social media and earth observations
||go to project|
|Development of a CEDIM database and implementation of case-based reasoning for analytical support||go to project|