Factors Underlying the Concept of Risk Acceptance in the Context of Flood-prone Land Use

Factors Underlying the Concept of Risk Acceptance in the Context of Flood-prone Land Use

L. Altarawneh J. Mackee T. Gajendran 

School of Architecture and Built Environment, University of Newcastle, Australia

31 August 2016
| Citation



The determination of acceptable risk levels for planning purposes is critical for policymakers concerned with floodplain management and safety issues; including the formulation of flood-prone land use policy and risk communication strategies. However, the concept of flood risk acceptance remains vague and is not yet fully understood in terms of how it is conceived and rationalised by the individuals engaged in flood-prone land use and development. In general terms, risk acceptance involves a complex weighing up of a range of influential factors that have evolved based on three key models: revealed preferences, expressed preferences and implied preferences. By investigating these models within the broader theoretical context of flood risk-related research, this paper, in essence, categorises six typologies that describe individuals’ psychophysical/cognitive states when they face the risk, respond to it and determine its acceptability contextualised within the process of flood-prone land use change. The paper then focuses on identifying the key barriers influencing the adoption of an informed, consultative approach to acceptable flood risk assessment and governance.


barriers, consultative approach, factors, flood-prone land use change, individuals, residential satisfaction, risk acceptance, risk perception


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