A multi-scale coastal vulnerability index: A tool for coastal managers?


General Information:

Author: McLaughlin, S., Cooper, A.

Year of publication: 2010

Available languages: English

Details of Assessment:

Type of assessment: Vulnerability assessment

Format of assessment: Scientific article

Estimated costs for conducting: No information

Estimated duration of assessment: No information

To be carried out by whom: Scientists/researchers

Institutional scale of use: Multiple (see details)

Details: National, regional, and local/community level

Assesment to be used by which target audience: Multiple actors

Details: National, regional, and local coastal managers or policy makers

Output: Others (see details)

Details: Vulnerability map


Coverage & Methodology:

Region of origin: Europe

Developed by which sector: Science

Applied in practice: Yes

Geographic coverage in analysis: Europe

Potential geographic coverage: Worldwide (coastal environments)

Sectors covered: Infrastructure, Biodiversity

Details: Eg: Population, cultural heritage, roads, railways, landuse, conservation status

Method used: Index development

Description of methodology: Ranking of variables (scale 1-5) to indicate their attribution to vulnerability; Index calculation including (i) a summary of numerical values for three sub-indices, (ii) a normalization of scores within three sub-indices and (iii) a merger of three sub indices into an overall index

Risk framework used: No explicit use of risk framework

Details: From a purely anthropocentric perspective concerned with the impact on human infrastructure, the vulnerability of a coastal area can be regarded as a function of the physical nature of the coast (which controls its ability to respond to perturbation), the nature (frequency and magnitude) and the degree to which such changes impact on human activities or property. Vulnerability can thus be expressed as coastal characteristics (resilience and susceptibility) + coastal forcing + socio-economic factors

Risk components incorporated: Vulnerability, hazard

Hazards and impacts considered in the assessment: Storm surge

Source of required data: Secondary (available data is used)

Details: Data on coastal characteristics, coastal forcing, and socio-economic information

Temporal scale: Current

Participatory elements: No

Consideration of interconnectedness and -dependencies of risks: No

Adressing uncertainty: No information

Scope of assessment: Identification of risks

Relevance for losses and damages:

Economic/Non-Economic losses incorporated: None

Applicability for entire risk spectrum (from extreme weather events to slow onset processes): No information


Recommendations for Adaptation measures included in Climate Risk Assessment: No

Usefulness for political purposes: Capacity to be used in assisting with devising coastal policy in the face of various coastal hazards. The presentation of information at a scale meaningful to the management unit enhances the utility of that information to develop adaptation strategies

Applied by whom: McLaughlin, S. and Cooper, A.

Open access: Yes