The World Bank’s disaster risk management (DRM) activities utilize a range of open access and open source computational modelling tools to quantify the risk posed by natural hazards. An important goal of these activities is to build capacity among national and local governments and international development professionals working in disaster risk management. A key decision in these activities is the choice of modelling tool that will be used to address the hazard, exposure, and/or risk question under consideration. This document presents an objective analysis of freely available hazard and risk modelling software in order to facilitate selection of appropriate tools for various DRM activities. There have been previous evaluations of freely available modelling tools across various natural hazards, but this is the first multi-hazard systematic review using a set of consistent criteria. The analysis covers hazard risk models for cyclone (wind), storm surge and tsunami, earthquake, and flood.
Over 80 open access software packages—excluding commercial software packages—were considered in the evaluation. A preliminary analysis was used to determine whether the models were currently supported and if they were open access. Based on the results, a subset of 31 models was selected for more detailed analysis; these included 8 earthquake models, 4 cyclone models, 11 flood models, and 8 storm surge/tsunami models. The detailed analysis evaluated the models on the basis of over 100 criteria and provided a synopsis of available open access natural hazard risk modelling tools.
The quality and availability of open access/open source software has grown significantly over the past few years. For example, private entities such as Deltares now have an open source policy regarding some flood models. In addition, leaders in developing risk models in the public sector, such as Geoscience Australia (EQRM, TCRM, TsuDAT, ANUGA) and CAPRA (ERN-Flood,
Hurricane, CRISIS2007), are launching and/or helping many other initiatives. As we achieve greater interoperability between modelling tools, we will also achieve a future in which open source and open access modelling tools are connected and adapted to unified multi-risk model platforms and highly customized solutions.
- Review of Open Source and Open Access Software Packages Available to Quantify Risk from Natural Hazards
- Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR)