Delft, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2021

Mr. Neiler Medina Peña awarded with a Doctoral degree

On 21 June 2021, Mr. Neiler Medina Peña successfully presented and defended his PhD thesis and was awarded with a Doctoral degree. Professor Damir Brdjanovic was his promotor and Dr. Zoran Vojinovic his co-promotor.

The PhD research focused on

Climate change, combined with the rapid and often unplanned urbanisation trends, is associated with a rising trend in the frequency and severity of disasters triggered by natural hazards. In order to face the impacts of such threats, it is necessary to have an appropriate Disaster Risk Assessment (DRA). Traditional DRA approaches for disaster risk reduction (DRR) have focused mainly on the hazard component of risk, with little attention to the vulnerability and the exposure components. To address this issue, this dissertation’s main objective is to develop and test a disaster risk modelling framework that incorporates socioeconomic vulnerability and the adaptive nature of exposure associated with human behaviour in extreme hydro-meteorological events in the context of SIDS. To achieve the objective, an Adaptive Disaster Risk Assessment (ADRA) framework is proposed. ADRA uses an index-based approach (PeVI) to assess the socioeconomic vulnerability using three components: susceptibility, lack of coping capacities, and lack of adaptation. Furthermore, ADRA explicitly incorporates the exposure component using two approaches; first, a logistic regression model was built using the actual evacuation rates observed during Hurricane Irma, and second, an Agent-based model is used to simulate how households change their exposure levels in relation to different sources of information.

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