Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment
Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment

Marleen Carolijn de Ruiter

Date: 17 September 2020
Time: 11:45 - 13:15
Location: De Boelelaan 1087, 1081 HV Amsterdam. W&N gebouw, C-554

Dissertation title: 

Dynamics of vulnerability: From single to multi-hazard risk across spatial scales

Group: Water and Climate Risk, Institute for Environmental Studies, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Promotors: Prof. Dr. J.C.J.H. Aerts
Co-promotor: Prof. Dr. P.J. Ward


The number of recorded disasters caused by natural hazards has more than doubled since 1980. Floods and earthquakes often lead the charts of being the most damaging natural hazard types and the damages they cause are likely to continue to increase. The impacts of disasters may increase in the future due to changes in hazard as a result of climate change, and exposure as a result of socioeconomic development and population growth. However, while much research has focused on changing hazard and exposure conditions, few studies account for the temporal dynamics in vulnerability through for example, consecutive disasters or the implementation of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) measures. This thesis assesses the dynamics of local vulnerability, specifically related to consecutive disasters and the implementation of DRR measures. The results of this thesis support the need for a paradigm shift to perceive risk more holistically, accounting for different hazards and temporal dynamics.