My Ocean Tree

Report on the workshop for the participatory evaluation of earthquake risk and resilience in Quito, Ecuador

Valcrcel, J.A., Burton, C.B., Villacis, C.

Physical Risk



The South America Risk Assessment (SARA) project promotes the evaluation of earthquake risk from an integrated perspective. This integrated perspective not only accounts for the estimation of human and economic losses from damaging earthquake events, it includes measuring characteristics within communities that affect the distribution of impacts and a community’s ability to recover. This integrated perspective is accomplished, in part, through the development of indicators and indices of social vulnerability (characteristics within social systems that create the potential for loss) and the combination of these with estimates of physical risk (i.e. human or economic losses). Indicators and indices are increasingly being recognized as useful tools for policy development in the area of natural hazards risk because they can summarize complex and multidimensional realities. Their use, however, for earthquake risk reduction policies may invite overly simplistic results. This especially applies to circumstances where characteristics of populations at risk are highly multidimensional and place specific, making them difficult to measure.

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