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How businesses use data to outsmart nature's wrath

Source(s):  Scientific American, a Division of Nature America, Inc.

The majority of disaster-related losses are actually preventable, if you have the right information

By Lou Gritzo

Floods, typhoons and earthquakes are part of life on this planet. Yet it’s frequently a shock when your community, business or nation is struck. More often than not, the destructive aftermath of a disaster is attributed to fate or inevitability.

But the majority of these losses are actually preventable. You could have better fortified your property. If you had the option, you might have selected a less risky location. And if it was your business that was affected, you could have more deeply explored the risk you were inheriting from all of your locations, suppliers and customers.

This thinking is at the center of my company’s ongoing effort to quantify natural hazard risk around the world. As a commercial property insurer, we do this to help businesses decide where to site new offices, warehouses, or plants or for companies to assess and prioritize their existing risk profile. It’s important for businesses to be resilient—physically, economically and operationally—so they can stay in business and succeed relative to their competition, and supply economic well-being to their communities.

Fortunately, there is an expanding world full of data that we’ve analyzed to help these companies, by ranking countries according to their natural hazard risk.

Here’s how the analysis came together and what it showed.


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  • Publication date 13 Jun 2017

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