ERC Project HydroSocialExtremes
Unraveling the mutual shaping of hydrological extremes and society
The Transformative Potential of Extreme Weather Events
Triggers for Disaster Risk Reduction and Development (TRAMPOLINE)
When it rains it pours
Biogeophysical drivers and societal responses to compound natural hazard events in Sweden
Research portrait: Giuliano Di Baldassarre
CNDS Director and Professor of Hydrology at Uppsala University.
- What is your area of expertise?
My research deals with risks (and opportunities) generated by human-nature interactions, with a focus on water-related issues including floods and droughts
- What sparked your interest in Natural Hazards and Disaster Science?
Extreme events have always captured my attention, but what sparked my interest in studying disasters was the experience of a major earthquake in L’Aquila (Italy) that killed more than 300 people on April 6th, 2009.
- If you could only work on one problem in Natural Hazards and Disaster Science it would be exploring the benefits of tackling the root causes of disaster losses, such as social inequalities, because too much emphasis is still given to structural measures that only treat their symptoms.
- What book or paper has been most influential to your career and why?
“Thinking, fast and slow” by Daniel Kahneman. This book made me fascinated by cognitive sciences and motivated my research in the way in which humans make decisions –an essential aspect in the study of natural hazards and disasters.
- What do you like to do when you’re not working on research?
Art and sport. I make short films (not many right now) and act for a theater group based in Stockholm. I also enjoy obstacle course racing (OCR), a great team-building activity.
- What is your golden tip for current early career scientists?
Avoid a tunnel vision. To advance science, we need to go deep on one specific topic, but we should try to keep a big picture if we aim to develop policy-relevant science. Listening, exchanging ideas or collaborating with fellows from other disciplines is key.