Density and Disasters: Economics of Urban Hazard Risk

50 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Somik V. Lall

Somik V. Lall

World Bank

Uwe Deichmann

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

Date Written: December 1, 2009

Abstract

Today, 370 million people live in cities in earthquake prone areas and 310 million in cities with high probability of tropical cyclones. By 2050, these numbers are likely to more than double. Mortality risk therefore is highly concentrated in many of the world’s cities and economic risk even more so. This paper discusses what sets hazard risk in urban areas apart, provides estimates of valuation of hazard risk, and discusses implications for individual mitigation and public policy. The main conclusions are that urban agglomeration economies change the cost-benefit calculation of hazard mitigation, that good hazard management is first and foremost good general urban management, and that the public sector must perform better in generating and disseminating credible information on hazard risk in cities.

Keywords: Banks & Banking Reform, Environmental Economics & Policies, Hazard Risk Management, Urban Housing, Labor Policies

Suggested Citation

Lall, Somik V. and Deichmann, Uwe, Density and Disasters: Economics of Urban Hazard Risk (December 1, 2009). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 5161, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1533679

Somik V. Lall (Contact Author)

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/slall

Uwe Deichmann

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG) ( email )

1818 H. Street, N.W.
MSN3-311
Washington, DC 20433
United States

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