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

Sanne Muis

Date: 04 December 2018
Time: 13:45 - 14:45
Location: Aula VU, De Boelelaan 1085, Amsterdam

Dissertation title: 

Assessing coastal flood risk at the global scale

Group: VU University Amsterdam, Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), Spatial Analysis and Decision Support
Promotor: Prof. J.C.J.H. Aerts
Co-promotors: Dr P.J. Ward


Coastal flooding is one of the world’s most threatening natural hazards. Risks are increasing globally due to socio-economic development and climate change. Global flood hazard maps are increasingly used to inform climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. There is a large potential to improve those maps by utilizing recent advances in global data availability and hydrodynamic modelling.

This dissertation has contributed to an improved quantification of the global risks to coastal flooding by applying a hydrodynamic modelling approach at the global scale. Validation shows that there is good agreement between modelled and observed sea levels, and that the performance is similar to that of many regional hydrodynamic models. This constitutes a major improvement with respect to earlier global datasets. We estimate that about 158 million people are living in areas below the 1 in 100‐year sea levels.

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