Tehran Institute for Advanced Studies (TeIAS)

/ Accounting for Extreme Uncertainty in Risk Management of Natural Hazard __ Azadeh Mostofi


Accounting for Extreme Uncertainty in Risk Management of Natural Hazard

January 14, 2018


Khatam University, Building No2.
Address: Mollasadra Blvd., North Shirazi St., East Daneshvar St., No.17. See location on Google map


Azadeh Mostofi

PhD Candidate in Civil/Geotechnical Engineering at University of Texas at Austin, USA


Risk management process to deal with natural hazards (e.g. storm, landslide, earthquake, etc.) involves decision making to find an optimal loss-mitigation approach. A good, representative decision analysis process relies on reasonably capturing all possible scenarios that would happen in a natural hazard event and assessing the probabilities. This requirement for the evaluation of possible scenarios exists while there are multiple sources of uncertainties in such a problem and our knowledge of extreme events is limited. In our research, we showed that using the historical data and extending past knowledge to predict a future event is not completely applicable and reliable. Thus, it is important to consider the possibility of irrelevancy of historical data to the problem. The research shows that to consider extreme and rare events, it is required to use a non-informative prior probability in the Bayesian analysis. Such non-informative prior probability distribution is obtained by maximizing the entropy of possible events, which maximize the lack of information. This presentation discusses the motivation of our research to develop a new decision-based framework in order to reasonably capture sources of uncertainties in the natural hazard risk management decision analysis.


Azadeh Mostofi is a PhD Candidate (soon to graduate) in Civil/Geotechnical
Engineering at University of Texas at Austin. She has done her PhD research on risk assessment and management of landslides by introducing a new probability theory. She holds a M.S. in Civil Engineering/Marine Structures Engineering from University of Tehran and a B.S. in Civil Engineering from K.N.Toosi University of Technology. She plans to continue her career in the area of Risk Management of Natural Hazards.