A strategy for managing natural disasters in Italy
As for Italy, which is particularly vulnerable from a hydro-geological perspective, although it is easy to analyse events from a scientific standpoint, it is much more difficult to perform a socio-economic analysis of the costs and benefits of prevention activities, mainly due to the lack of an effective assessment system.
We therefore decided to finance The Economic Assessment of Natural Disasters in Italy, an interdisciplinary project in partnership with three institutes of the Italian National Research Council, the Milan section of the National Geophysics Institute, and an inter-university centre for research into the economics of resources and the environment.
The initial focus of the project is on earthquakes and landslides, and involves four levels of assessment:
- quantification (ex post) of the private and social “cost” of the natural disasters that have taken place in Italy;
- assessment (ex ante) of the socio-economic cost at risk;
- economic assessment of prevention/mitigation policies;
- the possible role of insurance policies, in connection with investment in prevention/mitigation, as part of a national strategy for natural disasters.