Natural Hazards

, Volume 70, Issue 1, pp 51–68 | Cite as

An automated model for optimizing budget allocation in earthquake mitigation scenarios

  • Hooman MotamedEmail author
  • Bijan Khazai
  • Mohsen Ghafory-Ashtiany
  • Kambod Amini-Hosseini
Original Paper


Risk reduction as an outcome only takes place if results of risk estimation studies are used to develop action plans for risk-management and risk-reduction strategies. This paper describes an automated model that uses the output of existing earthquake loss estimation methodologies to support decision makers in evaluating a set of competing seismic mitigation strategies and exploring their impact in reducing socio-economic losses of urban settlements. The proposed model is structured to quantify the monetary value of earthquake losses and to find an optimal budget allocation assigned to each mitigation strategy based on user input. The optimization method takes into account both pre- and post-earthquake expenditures, such as costs of building upgrades, critical facility enhancement, temporary shelter provisions, debris removal, hospitalization and human casualty. The system consists of five main modules: (1) building damage function; (2) mitigated damage function; (3) cost estimation function; (4) optimization function; and (5) user interface function. Whereas the optimization function provides the optimal values assigned to each mitigation alternative based on the estimated costs and a defined budget, the user interface allows the decision maker to interact with the software in each step and plan mitigation strategies that best suit the user’s socio-economic requirements and limitations. The outputs of the proposed model are presented with respect to an application in a pilot study area within a vulnerable city district of Tehran, Iran.


Budget allocation Optimization Earthquake Mitigation planning Urban area 


  1. Abbasi MR, Shabanian E (1999) Fault map of north Tehran. International Institute of Earthquake Engineering and Seismology, TehranGoogle Scholar
  2. Altay G, Deodatis G, Franco G, Gulkan P, Kunreuther H, Lus H, Mete E, Seeber N, Smyth A, Yuzugullu O (2002) Benefit-cost analysis for earthquake mitigation: evaluating measures for apartment in Turkey. In: Proceedings 2nd annual IIASA-DPRI meeting. International Institute for Advanced Systems Analysis, LaxenburgGoogle Scholar
  3. Amini-Hosseini K, Jafari MK (2006) Seismic risk assessment for Tehran. J Seismol Earthq Eng 9(1):11–21Google Scholar
  4. Amini-Hosseini K, Jafari MK (2007) Development guidelines for disaster management in Tehran. In: Proceeding of 5th international conference on seismology and earthquake engineering. Tehran, IranGoogle Scholar
  5. Amini-Hosseini K, Hosseini M, Jafari MK, Hosseinioun S (2009) Recognition of vulnerable Urban fabrics in earthquake zones: a case study of Tehran metropolitan area. J Seismol Earthq Eng (JSEE) 10(4):175–187Google Scholar
  6. Applied Technology Council (ATC) (1985) ATC-13 earthquake damage evaluation data for California. Applied Technology Council, Redwood CityGoogle Scholar
  7. Askari F, Kasaei M (2003) Evaluation of liquefaction potential in part of South-East Tehran. J Eng Sch Tehran Univ 37(2):257–268Google Scholar
  8. Berberian M, Yeats RS (2001) Contribution of archaeological data to studies of earthquake history in the Iranian Plateau. J Struct Geol 23:563–584CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Chang SE, Shinozuka M, Moore JE (2000) Probabilistic earthquake scenarios: extending risk analysis methodologies to spatially distributed systems. Earthq Spectr 16(3):557–572CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Dodo A, Xu N, Davidson R, Nozick L (2005) Optimizing regional earthquake mitigation investment strategies. Earthq Spectr 21(2):305–327CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) (1997) NEHRP guidelines for the seismic rehabilitation of buildings, FEMA 273, prepared by Building Seismic Safety Council, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  12. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) (2000) Pre-standard and commentary for the seismic rehabilitation of buildings, FEMA 356, prepared by American Society of Civil Engineering, RestonGoogle Scholar
  13. Ghafory-Ashtiany M (2001) Tehran earthquake risk reduction plan. I.R. Housing Foundation, TehranGoogle Scholar
  14. Ghafory-Ashtiany M, Jafari MK (2003) Tehran geotechnical microzonation, Conference. SEE4, TehranGoogle Scholar
  15. Ghafory-Ashtiany M, Jafari M K, Shadi Talab J, Eshghi S, Qurashi M (1992) Tehran vulnerability analysis. In: Tenth world conference on earthquake engineering. Balkema, RotterdamGoogle Scholar
  16. Gholipour Y, Ghorashi M, Talebian M, Nazari H, Berberian M, Bozorgnia Y, Shoja Taheri J, Shafiei A, Rahnama M (2006) Comprehensive seismic hazard analysis of Iran: probabilistic and deterministic seismic hazard analysis, attenuation study and seismic design spectra—phase 1: Greater Tehran, College of Engineering, University of TehranGoogle Scholar
  17. HAZUS-FEMA Technical Manual (2003) Multi-hazard loss estimation methodology, Earthquake model, HAZUS-MH MR1, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  18. Hessami K, Jamali F, Tabassi H (2003) Active fault maps of Iran, Seismotectonic Dept., Seismology Research Center. IIEES, IranGoogle Scholar
  19. Hosseini M (2006) Protecting Tehran against earthquake: issues and strategies in Urban planning and design. J Seismol Earth Eng (JSEE) 9(4):32–43Google Scholar
  20. Jafari MK, Amini-Hosseini K, Hosseini M, Kamalian M, Askari F, Razmkhah A, Davoodi M, Mahdavifar MR, Sohrabi Bidar A, Keshavarz Bakhshayesh M (2005) Seismic hazard study, final report for Tehran comprehensive plan, International Institute of Earthquake Engineering and Seismology, IIEES, IranGoogle Scholar
  21. Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) (2000) The study on seismic microzoning of the greater Tehran area in the Islamic Republic of Iran, final report to the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, TokyoGoogle Scholar
  22. Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Tehran Disaster Mitigation and Management Center (TDMMC) (2004) The comprehensive master plan on urban seismic disaster management for the greater Tehran area in the Islamic Republic of Iran, TokyoGoogle Scholar
  23. Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Tehran Disaster Mitigation and Management Organization (TDMMO) (2010) Establishment of emergency response plan for the 1st 72 h after an earthquake in Tehran. TehranGoogle Scholar
  24. Kappos AJ, Dimitrakopoulos EG (2008) Feasibility of pre-earthquake strengthening of buildings based on cost-benefit and life-cycle cost analysis, with the aid of fragility curves. Nat Hazards 45:33–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kunreuther H, Cyr C, Grossi P, Tao W (2001a) Using cost-benefit analysis to evaluate mitigation for lifeline systems, MCEER Research Progress and Accomplishments 2000–2001, MCEER, BuffaloGoogle Scholar
  26. Kunreuther H, Grossi P, Seeber N, Smyth A (2001b) A framework for evaluating the cost-effectiveness of mitigation measures, joint workshop of Urban Riks Management for Natural Disasters, Bogazici University/Columbia University, Istanbul, TurkeyGoogle Scholar
  27. Lupoi G, Franchin P, Lupoi A, Pinto PE, Calvi GM (2008) Probabilistic seismic assessment for hospitals and complex-social Systems. IUSSpress, PaviaGoogle Scholar
  28. Management and Planning Organization (2007) Instruction for seismic rehabilitation of existing buildings, No. 360, Prepared by the Bureau of technical criteria codification and earthquake risk reduction affairs, IranGoogle Scholar
  29. Mansouri B, Ghafory-Ashtiany M, Amini-Hosseini K, Nourjou R, Mousavi M (2010) Building seismic loss model for Tehran using GIS. Earthq Spectr 26(1):153–168CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Mid-America Earthquake Center (2009) Impact of new Madrid seismic zone earthquake on central USA, vol 1, report no. 09–03. University of IllinoisGoogle Scholar
  31. Miller TR (2000) Variation between countries in value of statistical life. J Transp Econ Policy 34(2):169–188Google Scholar
  32. Nutti C, Vanzi I (1998) Assessment of post-earthquake availability of hospital system and upgrading strategies. Earthq Eng Struct Dyn 27:1403–1423CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Shah H, Bendimerad F, Stojanovski P (1992) Resource allocation in seismic risk mitigation. In: Proceedings 10th world conference on earthquake engineering, vol 4. Madrid, pp 6007–6011Google Scholar
  34. The Sphere Project (2004) Humanitarian charter and minimum standards for DISASTER response. The Sphere Project, GenevaGoogle Scholar
  35. Vaziri P, Davidson R, Nozick LK, Hosseini M (2009) Resource allocation for regional earthquake risk mitigation: a case study of Tehran, Iran, Nat Hazards. doi: 10.1007/s11069-009-9446-4

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hooman Motamed
    • 1
    Email author
  • Bijan Khazai
    • 2
  • Mohsen Ghafory-Ashtiany
    • 1
  • Kambod Amini-Hosseini
    • 1
  1. 1.International Institute of Earthquake Engineering and SeismologyTehranIran
  2. 2.Centre for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction TechnologiesKarlsruhe Institute of TechnologyKarlsruheGermany

Personalised recommendations