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Bridges over troubled waters? An interdisciplinary framework for evaluating the interconnectedness within fragmented domestic flood risk management systems

Gilissen, Herman Kasper, Alexander, Meghan, Beyers, Jean-Christophe, Chmielewski, Piotr, Matczak, Piotr, Schellenberger, Thomas and Suykens, Cathy 2016. Bridges over troubled waters? An interdisciplinary framework for evaluating the interconnectedness within fragmented domestic flood risk management systems. Journal of Water Law 25 (1) , pp. 12-26.

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Abstract

Diversification of strategies in Flood Risk Management (FRM) is widely regarded as a necessary step forward in terms of lessening the likelihood and magnitude of flooding, as well as minimizing the exposure of people and property, and in turn the disruption, economic damage, health impacts and other adverse consequences that ensue when floods occur. Thus, diversification is often heralded as an essential condition for enhancing societal resilience to flooding. However, an inevitable consequence of diversifying strategies and practices in FRM is that it can lead to fragmentation within FRM systems, in terms of the distribution of responsibilities between actors and governing rules enacted within different policy domains. This can prove detrimental to the effectiveness of FRM. Building upon the notion of fragmentation developed in legal and governance literature, this paper introduces the concept of ‘bridging mechanisms’, i.e. instruments that remedy fragmentation by enhancing interconnectedness between relevant actors through information transfer, coordination and cooperation. This paper develops a typology of both fragmentation and bridging mechanisms and analyzes their relations, partly drawing upon empirical research conducted within the EU ‘STAR-FLOOD’ project. In turn, this paper outlines a novel interdisciplinary methodological framework for evaluating the degree and quality of the interconnectedness within fragmented domestic FRM systems. A pragmatic, flexible and broadly applicable tool, this framework is both suited for academic purposes, as well as for practically oriented analysis and (re)development of fragmented FRM systems, and potentially other fragmented systems, within the EU and abroad.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Earth and Ocean Sciences
Publisher: Lawtext Publishing
ISSN: 1478-5277
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 16 October 2017
Date of Acceptance: 16 July 2016
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2018 05:02
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/105585

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