12-14 October 2015

Symposium "Regional Floods: Regional effects of changes in the river system"

In October 2015 the Flood Change Team of the Technical University of Vienna organised a...

31. March 2015

AGU "Editor's Citation for Excellence in Refereeing" awarded to TU Wien Researcher

Dr. Rui A. P. Perdigão, researcher at TU Wien and Flood Change team member, was distinguished...

21.-22. October 2014

Symposium "Land Use Change Impacts on Floods"

In October 2014 the Flood Change Team of the Technical University of Vienna organised a...

Motivation and Research Questions

Many major and devastating floods have occurred around the world recently. Their number and magnitude seems to have increased but such changes are not clear.
More surprisingly, the exact causes of changes remain a mystery. Are these changed weather patterns, larger number of convective storms, change in antecedent soil moisture or changes in land use and management? Although, drivers such as climate and land use change are known to play a critical role, their complex interactions in flood generation have not been disentangled.

The key objectives of this project are to understand how changes in land use and climate translate into changes in river floods, what factors are controlling this relationship and what uncertainties are involved. The purpose is not to predict future river flood changes in a particular catchment but to understand the more fundamental processes relating floods to their drivers. The research in this project is hence complementary to the traditional scenario approach and will provide a significant step towards a unified treatment of river flood changes.

Specifically, the following key questions will be addressed:

  • When, where, how have floods changed?
  • Why do floods change?
  • How sensitive are floods to changes in land use and climate?
  • How confident can we be about predicting future changes in floods?