A framework for pluvial flood risk assessment in Alexandria considering the coping capacity

  • Bahaa Elboshy
  • Shinjiro Kanae
  • Mona Gamaleldin
  • Hany Ayad
  • Toshihiro Osaragi
  • Waleed Elbarki


Urbanization and climate change are likely to aggravate the flood risk especially in the developing regions where these are also lack of resources. Risk assessment at the local scale can be seen as an important tool to assist the decision makers to identify and prioritize development, preparedness, and emergency. This paper introduces an integrated framework to assess urban pluvial flood risk, taking into consideration the available coping capacity arrangements as the coping capacity is considered to be the main factor to control the risk impact. The presented framework incorporates the pluvial flood inundation model; the building and social vulnerabilities indices; and coping capacity indicators to identify the risk level in the urban areas and to test the different scenarios for the disaster risk reduction measures. The proposed risk assessment framework has been applied to the city of Alexandria, located in northern Egypt, as there is an increase in pluvial floods in the city causing economic and human losses. A risk map for Almontaza district has been prepared to reveal the risk level for each block, this map can be used for the planning purposes. The introduced framework can increase the efficiency of the preparedness and emergency plans; it can also help the planners to direct the available development resources to the priority areas.


Urban flood Risk assessment Extreme events Risk modeling Coping capacity 



Bahaa Elboshy was supported by a scholarship from the Mission Department, Ministry of Higher Education of the Government of Egypt, which is gratefully acknowledged as well as the Egypt-Japan University of Science and Technology (E-JUST). In addition, the authors are grateful to Tokyo Institute of Technology, and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).


  1. African Development Bank (2015) Emergency humanitarian relief assistance to the victims of the floods.
  2. Ahmed Z (2013) Disaster risks and disaster management policies and practices in Pakistan: a critical analysis of Disaster Management Act 2010 of Pakistan. Int J Disaster Risk Reduct 4:15–20. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Alcántara-Ayala I, Altan O, Baker D, Briceño S, Cutter SL, Gupta H, Holloway A, Ismail-Zadeh A, Jiménez V, Johnston D, Ogawa Y, Paton D, Porio E, Silbereisen R, Takeuchi K, Valsecchi G, Vogel C, Wu G, McBean G, Zhai P (2015) Disaster risks research and assessment to promote risk reduction and managementGoogle Scholar
  4. Alexander M, Viavattene C, Faulkner H, Priest S (2011) A GIS-based flood risk assessment tool: supporting Flood Incident Management at the local scale. Flood Hazard Research Centre, Middlesex UniversityGoogle Scholar
  5. Ali NA (2015) Alexandria drowns: a philosophical reading of flood management in Post-revolution EgyptGoogle Scholar
  6. Balica S (2009) Flood vulnerability indices at varying spatial scales. ​Water Sci Technol 60(10):2571–2580CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Barahona F, Ettl M, Petrik M, Rimshnick PM (2013) Agile logistics simulation and optimization for managing disaster responses. In: Simulation Conference (WSC), 2013 Winter: 3340–3351. IEEEGoogle Scholar
  8. Barsley W, De Young C, Brugere C (2013) Vulnerability assessment methodologies: an annotated bibliography for climate change and the fisheries and aquaculture sector.
  9. Birkmann J (2007) Risk and vulnerability indicators at different scales: applicability, usefulness and policy implications. Environ Hazards 7(1):20–31CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Birkmann J, Cardona OD, Carreño ML, Barbat AH, Pelling M, Schneiderbauer S, Kienberger S, Keiler M, Alexander D, Zeil P, Welle T (2013) Framing vulnerability, risk and societal responses: the MOVE framework. Nat Hazards 67:193–211. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Bostick TP, Connelly EB, Lambert JH, Linkov I (2018) Resilience science, policy and investment for civil infrastructure. Reliab Eng Syst Saf 175:19–23CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Carreño M-L, Cardona OD, Barbat AH (2007a) Urban seismic risk evaluation: a holistic approach. Nat Hazards 40:137–172. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Carreño ML, Cardona OD, Barbat AH (2007b) A disaster risk management performance index. Nat Hazards 41:1–20CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Chen W, Cutter SL, Emrich CT, Shi P (2013) Measuring social vulnerability to natural hazards in the Yangtze River Delta region, China. Int J Disaster Risk Sci 4:169–181CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Dall’Osso F, Gonella M, Gabbianelli G, Withycombe G, Dominey-Howes D (2009) A revised (PTVA) model for assessing the vulnerability of buildings to tsunami damage. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci 9:1557–1565CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. De Risi R, Jalayer F, De Paola F, Iervolino I, Giugni M, Topa ME, Mbuya E, Kyessi A, Manfredi G, Gasparini P (2013) Flood risk assessment for informal settlements. Nat Hazards 69(1):1003–1032CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. DHS (2010) DHS risk Lexicon: 2010 edition.
  18. Dilley M, Chen RS, Deichmann U, Lerner-Lam AL, Arnold M, Agwe J, Buys P, Kjekstad O, Lyon B, Yetman G (2005) Natural disaster hotspots a global risk analysis. ​World Bank PublicationsGoogle Scholar
  19. Eckert S, Jelinek R, Zeug G, Krausmann E (2012) Remote sensing-based assessment of tsunami vulnerability and risk in Alexandria, Egypt. Appl Geogr 32:714–723. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Fekete A (2009) Validation of a social vulnerability index in context to river-floods in Germany. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci 9(2):393–403CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Felsenstein D, Lichter M (2014) Social and economic vulnerability of coastal communities to sea-level rise and extreme flooding. Nat Hazards 71:463–491CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Flood List (2015) Egypt—Floods in Alexandria Leave at least 6 Dead—FloodList.
  23. Fox-Lent C, Bates ME, Linkov I (2015) A matrix approach to community resilience assessment: an illustrative case at Rockaway Peninsula. Environ Syst Decis 35:209–218CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. GFDRR (2016) The making of a riskier future: how our decisions are shaping future disaster riskGoogle Scholar
  25. Hauger MB, Mouchel JM, Mikkelsen PS (2006) Indicators of hazard, vulnerability and risk in urban drainage. Water Sci Technol 54:441–450CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hirokawa N, Osaragi T (2016) Access time of emergency vehicles under the condition of street blockages after a large earthquake. In: ISPRS Annals of photogrammetry, remote sensing and spatial information sciences, vol 4, pp 37–44Google Scholar
  27. Houston D, Werritty A, Bassett D (2011) Pluvial (rain-related) flooding in urban areas: the invisible hazard. Joseph Rowntree Foundation, YorkGoogle Scholar
  28. Huang D, Zhang R, Huo Z, Mao F, Youhao E, Zheng W (2012) An assessment of multidimensional flood vulnerability at the provincial scale in China based on the DEA method. Nat Hazards 64:1575–1586CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Huang J, Su F, Zhang P (2015) Measuring social vulnerability to natural hazards in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region, China. Chin Geogr Sci 25:472–485CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hung HC, Yang CY, Chien CY, Liu YC (2016) Building resilience: mainstreaming community participation into integrated assessment of resilience to climatic hazards in metropolitan land use management. Land Use Policy 50:48–58CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Hwang S, Park M, Lee H-S, Lee S, Kim H (2015) Postdisaster Interdependent Built environment recovery efforts and the effects of governmental plans: case analysis using system dynamics. J Constr Eng Manag 141(3):04014081CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. IASC (2016) Inform global model - interpreting and applying.
  33. Irwin S, Schardong A, Simonovic S, Nirupama N (2016) ResilSIM: a decision support tool for estimating resilience of urban systems. Water 8:377CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Jordan E, Javernick-Wil A (2012) Measuring community resilience and recovery: a content analysis of indicators. In: Construction research congress 2012: construction challenges in a flat world, pp 2190–2199Google Scholar
  35. Kaloop MR, Rabah M, Elnabwy M (2016) Sea level change analysis and models identification based on short tidal gauge measurements in Alexandria, Egypt. Mar Geod 39(1):1–20CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Keisler J, Linkov I (2014) Environment models and decisions. Environ Syst Decisions 34:369–372CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Kloos J, Baumert N (2015) Preventive resettlement in anticipation of sea level rise: a choice experiment from Alexandria, Egypt. Nat Hazards 76:99–121. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Linkov I, Bridges T, Creutzig F, Decker J, Fox-Lent C, Kröger W, Lambert JH, Levermann A, Montreuil B, Nathwani J, Nyer R, Renn O, Scharte B, Scheffler A, Schreurs M, Thiel-Clemen T (2014) Changing the resilience paradigm. Nat Clim Change 4:407–409. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Linkov I, Trump BD, Keisler JM (2018) Risk and resilience must be independently managed. Nature 555:30CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Liu D, Li Y (2016) Social vulnerability of rural households to flood hazards in western mountainous regions of Henan province, China. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci 16:1123–1134CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. MHUUC (2015) State of the built environment and housing indicators in seven Egyptian citiesGoogle Scholar
  42. Morales ALM (2002) Urban disaster management: a case study of earthquake risk assessment in Cartago, Costa RicaGoogle Scholar
  43. Müller A, Reiter J, Weiland U (2011) Assessment of urban vulnerability towards floods using an indicator-based approach-a case study for Santiago de Chile. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci 11:2107–2123CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Ostadtaghizadeh A, Ardalan A, Paton D, Khankeh H, Jabbari H (2016) Community disaster resilience: a qualitative study on Iranian concepts and indicators. Nat Hazards. Google Scholar
  45. Pagnoni G, Armigliato A, Tinti S (2015) Scenario-based assessment of buildings’ damage and population exposure due to earthquake-induced tsunamis for the town of Alexandria, Egypt. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci 15:2669–2695CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Papathoma-Köhle M (2016) Vulnerability curves vs. vulnerability indicators: application of an indicator-based methodology for debris-flow hazards. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci 16:1771–1790CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Pescaroli G, Alexander D (2015) A definition of cascading disasters and cascading effects: going beyond the “toppling dominos” metaphor. GRF Davos Planet@Risk 3:58–67Google Scholar
  48. Ramezankhani A, Najafiyazdi M (2008) A system dynamics approach on post-disaster management: a case study of bam earthquake, December 2003. In: 2008 international conference of the system dynamics society, ​GreeceGoogle Scholar
  49. Reliefweb (1996) Egypt - Floods Due To Canal Collapse Dec 1991 UNDRO Situation Reports 1–2.
  50. Revi A, Satterthwaite DE, Aragón-Durand F, Corfee-Morlot J, Kiunsi RBR, Pelling M, Solecki W (2014) Urban areas. Climate Change 2014: impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability. Part A: global and sectoral aspects. In: Contribution of working group II to the fifth assessment report of the intergovernmental panel on climate change, pp 535–612Google Scholar
  51. Romero-Lankao P, Gnatz DM, Sperling JB (2016) Examining urban inequality and vulnerability to enhance resilience: insights from Mumbai, India. Clim Change 139(3–4):351–365. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Simonovic SP (2012) Floods in a changing climate: risk management. ​Cambridge University PressGoogle Scholar
  53. Simonovic SP, Peck A (2013) Dynamic resilience to climate change caused natural disasters in coastal megacities quantification framework. Br J Environ Clim Change 3:378–401CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Soliman AM (2007) Urban informality in Egyptian cities: coping with diversity. In: Urban informality in Egyptian cities: coping with civersity, World bank fourth urban research symposiumGoogle Scholar
  55. Sungay B, Cakti E, Erdik M (2012) Discussing vulnerability, capacity and resilience of the community in the face of earthquakes at a microscale. In: European Conference on Earthquake Engineering (ECEE)Google Scholar
  56. Tedim F, Garcin M, Vinchon C, Carvalho S, Desramaut N, Rohmer J (2014) Assessment of vulnerability to natural hazards.
  57. UNESCO (2010) World Disasters Report 2010: Focus on Urban RiskGoogle Scholar
  58. UNISDR (2009) UNISDR terminology on disaster risk reduction. International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR).
  59. UNU-EHS (2016) World Risk Report 2016—Logistics and infrastructureGoogle Scholar
  60. Wamsler C, Brink E (2014) Prepared for the global assessment report on disaster risk reduction 2015Google Scholar
  61. Williams S, Ismail N (2015) Climate change, coastal vulnerability and the need for adaptation alternatives: planning and design examples from Egypt and the USA. J Mar Sci Eng 3:591–606CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. World Bank (2011) Climate change adaptation and natural disasters preparedness in the Coastal Cities of North AfricaGoogle Scholar
  63. World Bank (2015) Egypt overview. Countries.
  64. Xinhua (2015) African News—8 Killed in Flash Floods in Egypt’s Delta.
  65. Zevenbergen C, Bhattacharya B, Busher T, Wahaab RA, Company H, Abdelazim W, Elbarki I (2016) The October 2015 flood in Alexandria Scoping report for the Water Mondiaal ProgrammeGoogle Scholar
  66. Zevenbergen C, Bhattacharya B, Wahaab RA, Elbarki WAI, Busker T, Salinas Rodriguez CNA (2017) In the aftermath of the October 2015 Alexandria Flood Challenges of an Arab city to deal with extreme rainfall storms. Nat Hazards 86:901–917. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Zhang F (2013) Flood damage and vulnerability assessment for Hurricane Sandy in New York City. ​Doctoral dissertation, The Ohio State UniversityGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Environmental Engineering DepartmentEgypt-Japan University of Science and Technology (E-JUST)AlexandriaEgypt
  2. 2.Civil and Environmental Engineering DepartmentTokyo Institute of TechnologyTokyoJapan
  3. 3.Faculty of Engineering, Architectural DepartmentAlexandria UniversityAlexandriaEgypt
  4. 4.Department of Architecture and Building Engineering, School of Environment and SocietyTokyo Institute of TechnologyTokyoJapan
  5. 5.Civil Department, Faculty of EngineeringAlexandria UniversityAlexandriaEgypt

Personalised recommendations