Jan Daňhelka

Czech Republic

Dr. Jan Daňhelka Ph.D.

Future Forces Forum Future Forces Exhibition 2018

Hydrology Director
Czech Hydrometeorological Institute


Understanding the Flood Risk: Has 20 Years of Experience Led to Turn from Disaster Management to Culture of Risk Management, Prevention and Preparedness?

In 1997, a catastrophic flood occurred in Central Europe, which highlighted the urgent need for development of all aspects of flood risk management. Disaster management and disaster response capabilities were enhanced significantly in a short time before following catastrophic flood in 2002 resulting in significant decrease of fatalities. However the corresponding development of prevention and preparedness measures and instruments has been slower so far. This presentation summarizes changes in the monitoring, forecasting and warning system between floods in 2002 and 2013. In addition, an overview of EU Flood risk directive (2007/60/EC) implementation and resulting flood risk management plans is given. We conclude that while the role of disaster (flood) risk prevention and preparedness is emphasized in discussions, the legislation and practice still stresses disaster response activities within the whole risk management issue.

Curriculum Vitae

He studied physical geography and hydrology at Charles University, Faculty of Nature Science, where he got his Ph.D. degree in 2005.

He works as deputy director responsible for hydrological service at the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (CHMI) in Prague. Previously, he acted as head of Hydrological forecasting office and hydrological researcher at the CHMI and lecturer and research associate at Charles University. His forecasting experience thus includes extreme flood events of 2002 and 2013 and many smaller events including flash floods etc.

He represented Czech Republic in Working Group F of European Commission dealing with implementation of Directive 2007/60/EC on Flood Risk Assessment and Management. Since 2012, he is a member of Advisory Working Group of the Commission for Hydrology of World Meteorological Organization, responsible for thematic area of Water, Climate and Risk Management. He supported Czech vice-chairmanship during preparation process and 3rd WCDRR that resulted in adoption of Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. He is a member of Open-ended Intergovernmental Expert Working Group on Indicators and Terminology Relating to Disaster Risk Reduction.

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