Flood hazard mapping in developing countries: problems and prospects

Rabindra Osti (Public Work Research Institute, Tsukuba, Japan)
Shigenobu Tanaka (Public Work Research Institute, Tsukuba, Japan)
Toshikazu Tokioka (Public Work Research Institute, Tsukuba, Japan)

Disaster Prevention and Management

ISSN: 0965-3562

Publication date: 22 February 2008



This paper aims to describe the major causes of massive destruction due to floods in developing countries and to elaborate the usefulness of flood hazard maps under the framework of community‐based flood management.


This paper elaborates the usefulness of flood hazard maps and their application.


It is a clear perception that flood risk management cannot be treated in isolation – rather it should be a part of community development. In this context, it is essential to build a community's capacity to understand their vulnerabilities, strategies, activities and the role they could play in managing flood risks without relying on external entities. Therefore the proposed community‐based flood hazard‐mapping technique can be a good solution for addressing current issues. The approach will not only focus on the effective development and application of FHM but also it will correct the defects of the top‐down approach in disaster planning and also encourage all stakeholders' participation in an integrated and sustainable manner.

Practical implications

Based on the findings, it is strongly recommended that agencies should adhere and incorporate the idea while developing programs and projects for communities. In addition, It is simple to understand and easy to implement by the community.


It is hoped that the idea will be beneficial and a catalyst to promote a community's response for flood disaster management in developing countries, thereby helping agencies to develop an operational strategy in advance.



Osti, R., Tanaka, S. and Tokioka, T. (2008), "Flood hazard mapping in developing countries: problems and prospects", Disaster Prevention and Management, Vol. 17 No. 1, pp. 104-113. https://doi.org/10.1108/09653560810855919

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