Department of Geography: Modeling Social Vulnerability and Resilience to Flood Hazards (Garschagen, Yang)

Department / Institute
Department of Geography
Subject area
Geography, Hydrology, Geo-information System
Project title
Modeling social vulnerability and resilience to flood hazards
Name of supervisors
Prof. Dr. Matthias Garschagen, Dr. Liang Emlyn Yang
Number of open positions
1 or 2
Application deadline
January 31, 2022

(But earlier applications are early reviewed)
Language requirements
Proficiency in English
Academic requirements
(see below)
Project time plan
(see below)
Please send application with detailed CV, motivation letter and a research proposal to both:

Prof. Dr. Matthias Garschagen:

Dr. Liang Emlyn Yang:

Project description

Increasing studies are warning that the risk of flooding in coastal megacities is rapidly rising, especially in the fast developing Asia, due to the overlapping effects of climate change and strong urbanization. While different adaptation measures are currently debated by various authorities, getting a detailed understanding of whether, where and how cities are growing within or into hazard-prone areas is an urgent prerequisite for assessing future risk trajectories and informing decision making. It is meanwhile observed that human societies can certainly manage floods’ impacts and learn to live at flood prone areas, i.e., human societies have a capacity of resilience to floods and their impacts. Recent studies indicated that, among others, urban growth models, agent-based models and social hydrological models as well as stakeholder networks are powerful tools to capture both the physical climate changes and the social urbanization effects. This project aims to develop such modeling tools to simulate social vulnerability and resilience to flood hazards. Specific research areas include China, Southeast Asia and South Asia countries.

Academic Requirements

  • Completed Master degree in geography, hydrology, geo-information system, remote sensing, risk management, rural and urban studies, or other closely related fields
  • Knowledge in climate change risks, adaptation and resilience, particularly flood hazards, sea level rise and water management in developing and emerging Asia regions
  • Experience with quantitative assessment and modeling approaches, e.g. Agent-Based Model, Urban Growth Model, Social Network Analysis, spatial analysis and data visualization
  • Good knowledge in statistical methods and the programming language R
  • Publishing experience of peer-reviewed scientific papers is advantage

Language Requirements

  • English fluency is required with good scientific speaking and writing skills (at least IELTS 6.5, TOEFL IBT 95, or other equal certificates). German language is a plus.
  • Background knowledge of proposed study areas are necessary

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