Water Resources Management

, Volume 32, Issue 6, pp 2131–2145 | Cite as

Dealing with Uncertainty in Decision-Making for Drinking Water Supply Systems Exposed to Extreme Events

  • Alessandro Pagano
  • Irene Pluchinotta
  • Raffaele Giordano
  • Anna Bruna Petrangeli
  • Umberto Fratino
  • Michele Vurro


The availability and the quality of drinking water are key requirements for the well-being and the safety of a community, both in ordinary conditions and in case of disasters. Providing safe drinking water in emergency contributes to limit the intensity and the duration of crises, and is thus one of the main concerns for decision-makers, who operate under significant uncertainty. The present work proposes a Decision Support System for the emergency management of drinking water supply systems, integrating: i) a vulnerability assessment model based on Bayesian Belief Networks with the related uncertainty assessment model; ii) a model for impact, and related uncertainty assessment, based on Bayesian Belief Networks. The results of these models are jointly analyzed, providing decision-makers with a ranking of the priority of intervention. A GIS interface (G-Net) is developed to manage both input spatial information and results. The methodology is implemented in L’Aquila case study, discussing the potentialities associated to the use of the tool dealing with information and data uncertainty.


Emergency management Drinking water supply systems Bayesian belief networks Uncertainty analysis Decision support system 



The present research activity was developed within a research project funded by the Italian Department of Civil Protection (‘Intesa Operativa del 19.12.2006 tra DPC e IRSA—Rep. 618).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest



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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Water Research Institute – National Research Council (IRSA-CNR)BariItaly
  2. 2.LAMSADE – CNRS, Univ. Paris-Dauphine, PSL Research UnivParisFrance
  3. 3.DICATEChPolitecnico di BariBariItaly

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