Monitoring and Early Warning Systems for Droughts: Lessons from Floods

12 Pages Posted: 5 Nov 2014 Last revised: 31 Aug 2015

Joost Buurman

Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy

Ruben Dahm

Deltares

Albert Goedbloed

National University of Singapore (NUS) - Faculty of Engineering

Date Written: October 17, 2014

Abstract

Floods and droughts are natural hazards that cause worldwide billions of dollars of damage and extensive human suffering. Managing flood and drought risks in an informed and effective way is of utmost importance to reduce damages and mitigate long-term impacts on development. The area of flood risk management, including the development of monitoring and early warning systems, has seen much progress in the past years. However, for drought risks governments often still have a reactive approach instead of a proactive risk management approach. This can be explained by the complex characteristics of droughts. For the development of drought monitoring and early warning systems several lessons can be learned from flood early warning systems. A main conclusion is that the systems need to connect with the decisions that decision makers are facing. This means that in addition to the usual monitoring of indicators for physical parameters, such as water levels, also socio-economic indicators need to be included: a drought or a flood is mainly a disaster because people are affected.

Keywords: floods, droughts, monitoring, forecasting, early warning, risk management

Suggested Citation

Buurman, Joost and Dahm, Ruben and Goedbloed, Albert, Monitoring and Early Warning Systems for Droughts: Lessons from Floods (October 17, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2518758 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2518758

Joost Buurman (Contact Author)

Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy ( email )

Singapore 117591
Singapore

Ruben Dahm

Deltares ( email )

Rotterdamseweg
Delft
Netherlands

Albert Goedbloed

National University of Singapore (NUS) - Faculty of Engineering ( email )

9 Engineering Drive
Singapore, 117576
Singapore

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