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College of Arts & Sciences
Hazards & Vulnerability Research Institute

Population Vulnerability Analysis, Spatial Social Science and GIS

Investigators: Susan Cutter (PI), Walter W. Piegorsch

This project applies the theoretical perspective of vulnerability science and spatial social science techniques to better identify which groups within the population are most vulnerable in the event of an extreme natural disaster or terrorist or bioterrorist attack. Using advanced GIS and related tools for spatial analysis, population vulnerability is examined within the US using a variety of threats. The development of more valid metrics for comparing relative levels of vulnerability within the population taking into accountlocation, group characteristics and resources, and information that can be inferred from social science research is our goal.

Borden, K. and S. L. Cutter, 2008. “Spatial patterns of natural hazard mortality in the United States,” International Journal of Health Geographics 7: 64 doi: 10.1186/1476-072x-7-64.

Cutter, S. L., 2008. “Vulnerability Analysis, Environmental Hazards,” in E. Melnick and B. Everitt (eds.), Encyclopedia of Quantitative Risk Assessment. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons Ltd., pp. 1845-1848.

Piegorsch, Walter W. and Susan L. Cutter, 2008. Urban centers exhibit differential vulnerability to terrorism. Contingency Today, 14 April 2008.

Gall, M. and S. L. Cutter, 2007. “2005 Events and Outcomes: Hurricane Katrina and Beyond,” Chapter 7 in C. B. Rubin (ed.), Emergency Management: The American Experience 1900-2005. Washington D.C.: Public Entity Risk Institute (PERI), pp.185-205.

Piegorsch, W. W., S. L. Cutter, and F. Hardisty, 2007. “Benchmark Analysis for Quantifying Urban Vulnerability to Terrorist Incidents,” Risk Analysis 47 (6): 1411-1425.

Borden, K., M. C. Schmidtlein, C. Emrich, W. P. Piegorsch, and S. L. Cutter, 2007. “Vulnerability of US Cities to Environmental Hazards,” Journal of Homeland Security and Environmental Management 4(2): Article 5.

Cutter, S. L., C. T. Emrich, J. T. Mitchell, B. J. Boruff, M. Gall, M. C. Schmidtlein, C. G. Burton, and G. Melton, 2006. “The Long Road Home: Race, Class, and Recovery from Hurricane Katrina,” Environment 48(2): 8-20.

Cutter, S. L. and C. T. Emrich, 2006. “Moral Hazard, Social Catastrophe: The Changing Face of Vulnerability along the Hurricane Coasts,” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 604: 102-112.

Cutter, S. L. and C. Emrich, 2005. “Are Natural Hazards and Disaster Losses in the U.S. Increasing?”, EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union 86 (41), October 11, 2005: 381, 388-89.