Understanding householder responses to flood-risk

Lead Research Organisation: King's College London
Department Name: Unlisted

Abstract

Abstracts are not currently available in GtR for all funded research. This is normally because the abstract was not required at the time of proposal submission, but may be because it included sensitive information such as personal details.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description Research findings regarding the adoption, by householders in high risk areas, of long-term measures to protect their properties from flooding (e.g. by installing deployable barriers for doors and windows, or by building flood walls around front and back gardens):
- the main factor that leads people to protect their properties from flooding is direct experience of flooding. However, people with experience of flooding are less likely to believe that it is their responsibility to protect their homes and property and more likely to think that it is, rather, the duty of government agencies to reduce the risk of another flood occuring.
- it seems likely that the threat of the withdrawal of insurance is another important incentive for people to take long-term protective actions.
- Amongst householders in high risk areas, there remains a lack of confidence in the effectiveness of flood protection measures; this is one barrier to their wider adoption.

Other outcomes of the placement fellowship:
- The integration of social science findings and theories into the development of a policy for the promotion of property level flood risk adaptation.
- The enhancement of the quality of a large survey commissioned by Defra from a research agency
- The gaining of a good understanding, by Defra, of how social science can be used in the policy making process around flood risk management.
- The gaining by the placement fellow of some profound insights into the policy making process.
Exploitation Route The lack of confidence in flood protection measures could be addressed by providing householders with expert advice on which measure/s to employ. I persuaded Defra to talk to the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors to try to set up such a scheme, but these negotiations have not yet born fruit. I continue to put this proposal to Defra and to argue for the provision of such a service at academic conferences and in meetings with civil servants.

The relationship between property owners and their insurers needs further exploration. I shared the findings of this research with Brook Lyndhurst, who were reporting on the insurance angle to Defra and am currently engaged in further research on this topic.

I am currently engaged in further research to establish whether indirect experience of flooding (i.e. by friends and relatives) can substitute for direct experience as an incentive for protective action.
Sectors Environment

 
Description This purpose of this ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship was to allow the Fellow to write up previous research and write proposals for further research. The Fellow was not permitted to conduct new research. As a result, the main impact was on the Fellow's career. The Fellowship allowed him to prepare numerous papers and chapters for publication and to make a successful application for a small grant from the EPSRC. In the longer term, it enabled him to continue working in the same academic field, to continue disemminating his research findings to policy makers and to gain permanent employment as an academic researcher.
First Year Of Impact 2010
Sector Environment
Impact Types Policy & public services

 
Description Citation in: Synthesis of flood social science evidence for policy decision and delivery improvement
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Citation in systematic reviews
URL http://evidence.environment-agency.gov.uk/FCERM/Libraries/FCERM_Project_Documents/FD2671_report.sflb...
 
Description Impacts on central government property-level flood protection grant schemes
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Research and related activities influenced national and local policies on the promotion of property-level flood protection amongst householders and small businesses. This helped promote resilience to flooding (Societal Problem), reducing the negative economic impact of floods. The research and input influenced a £5m scheme to promote property-level flood protection and resilience measures and also the subsequent roll out of this scheme on a wider level. As a result of the input and advice: 1/ The normalisation of property-level protection and resilience was an explicit goal of the policy. 2/ Beneficiaries of grant schemes were not only provided with funding to buy protection but are also given professional advice on which measure is most suitable. 3/ The policy emphasised the need for genuine community engagement where, previously, property-level protection had tended to be seen as a matter for individuals and families. Hence: - Schemes were targeted at geographically clustered groups of at-risk homes, even where some homes were at a level of risk that did not, in terms of benefit-cost ratios, justify investment in protection. - Schemes were only funded where local agencies could show evidence of community level demand for property level protection and the potential for collaboration in the event of a flood. - All schemes include community-level flood response plans, developed in collaboration between local people and the local authority.
 
Description Royal Geographical Society EPSRC Small Grant
Amount £2,590 (GBP)
Organisation Royal Geographical Society 
Sector Learned Society
Country United Kingdom
Start 08/2010 
End 12/2011
 
Description Sandpit: Innovative Solutions to Flood Risk
Amount £130,000 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/K012770/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2012 
End 06/2016
 
Description Appearance on the BBC Politics Show - West 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact As a result of my press release, I took part in an on-air discussion with an MP and a candidate for an MEP position on the subject of flooding and blame.

not known
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Article in Independent Newspaper 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact not known
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
URL http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/war-is-waged-on-developers-who-target-sites-with-no-f...
 
Description Article in the Irish Examiner 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Not known
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/expert-view-floods-have-dramatic-emotional-and-social-impact-25...
 
Description Article published in the Daily Telegraph's 'Business Reporter' 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact not known
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://business-reporter.co.uk/2014/07/homeowners-warming-to-flood-defences-thanks-to-subsidy/
 
Description Independent Newspaper article resulting from my research into resilience to flooding 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Newspaper articles in a national newspaper: the Independent

None I'm aware of
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/when-manicured-riverside-suburbs-turn-into-a-dystopia-91...
 
Description Paper delivered to Defra/Environment Agency conference on flood risk management 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Lively discussion

not known
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Radio interviews 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Interviews on BBC Radio 5-Live, BBC Radio Cornwall and the BBC Radio West Midlands Morning Drive Time show

Not known
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Talk given at a seminar by the Centre for Public Policy 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The talk stimulated lots of questions and discussion - both in the session and afterwards

none
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010