top of page

GEM’s Governing Board meeting highlights the Global Earthquake Social Vulnerability maps


Dec 18, 2019

Global Social Vulnerability map

GEM conducted a successful end-of-year Governing Board meeting from 5-6 December in Pavia, Italy, where more than 30 individuals from the GEM Secretariat, public, private and associate sponsors participated in the meeting highlighted by the presentation of the Global Earthquake Social Vulnerability maps, and the formal induction of GEM’s new members: Swiss Re Institute, Guy Carpenter and Global Parametrics.


Official representatives, Michael Ewald of Swiss Re, Malcolm Haylock of Global Parametrics and Matthew Eagle of Guy Carpenter were formally introduced as new members of the Board. Sonia Talwar was also officially recognized as the new NRCan representative replacing Phil Hill.


GEM’s Risk and Social Vulnerability team has developed a robust and statistically validated set of Global Social Vulnerability and Resilience maps (SVR Global Model), presented during the social vulnerability workshop on June 18-19, 2019 to gather feedback from scientists across public, private and academic sectors; and shared with the GEM Governing Board on December 5-6, 2019 for initial internal validation.


The global maps consists of three components that depict characteristics that affect the impact and recovery potential of populations from earthquakes namely: social vulnerability, economic vulnerability and reconstruction and recovery.


GEM is currently working to establish a peer review process that will lead to the internal validation of the aforementioned maps and corresponding methodological documents. It is intended that the group will be comprised of experts from the public, private, academia and international organizations. The review is scheduled in the first quarter of 2020.


The social vulnerability maps are expected to be publicly released next year at the World Bank’s Understanding Risk (UR) Forum in May 2020 in Singapore. Two peer reviewed technical papers will also be included in the release.


Contact Miguel Toquica, GEM Social Vulnerability and Resilience Specialist at if you are interested and available to serve as a peer reviewer as soon as possible. The validation/review needs to be completed by January 31st, 2020. All inputs must be received on or before that date.


The addition of the Social Vulnerability and recovery component into GEM’s scientific framework provides the means to analyze and better understand the various socio-economic factors that may exacerbate the impact of an earthquake, or that may affect the ability of communities to fully recover from damaging earthquake events.


The understanding of Physical Seismic Risk combined with Social Vulnerability and Resilience (SVR) is what GEM calls Integrated Seismic Risk – a holistic understanding of the effects of earthquakes that can directly support decision making on short-term needs after an event (relief, shelter); medium-term needs (recovery and reconstruction); and long-term needs related to policies on risk mitigation.


Watch this space for more updates.

No images found.





bottom of page