SMALLDIS – The impact of small-scale disaster events: an exploration of disaster related losses, extensive risk management and learning at the institutional community level in Italy

SMALLDIS project looks at the impact and response generated by extensive small scale disaster events in three regions in Italy as a means of furthering understanding of vulnerability and risk to recurring natural hazards.

24 months from 01/09/2016 to 31/08/2018
Funded by
  • European Commission

Coordinating organization
  • CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici

CMCC Scientific Leader
CMCC Project manager

General aims

The objectives of this project include 1) a conceptual assessment of mechanisms for capturing data on disaster losses to analyze how definitions impact data accuracy for measuring extensive risk; 2) using alternative sources to build on existing datasets in order to assess the economic, social, and environmental losses associated with extensive disasters for three regions in Italy; 3) examining how disaster management institutions and communities respond to small scale and recurrent disasters, and if such events trigger changes in risk perception, disaster management, and learning at both institutional and community levels; 4) comparisons between quantitative and qualitative impacts of disaster events, and institutional regimes, hazard contexts, and cultural norms for confronting risk.


SMALLDIS is a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship (IF-EF) hosted by CMCC and carried out by Dr. Zehra Zaidi, the Fellow. Dr. Jaroslav Mysiak is the project Scientific Supervisor. 

Expected results

The project holds significant policy relevance in the fields of development, disaster risk reduction, and climate change adaptation. Despite their cumulative impact, small disasters are frequently left out of national disaster databases, and do not form the focus of national climate change or disaster management policies. As demonstrated by Marulanda et al (2010), the accumulated economic, social and environmental cost of small scale disasters can be higher in comparison to high impact, low frequency events occurring over the same time period. Small disasters are also important because they reveal underlying local development and planning issues that form the root cause of vulnerability to more extreme events.

  • Conceptual review of loss estimations for extensive risk
  • Data aggregation for extensive disaster losses in case study locations
  • Institutional and community level analysis of extensive risk
  • Comparative analysis of impact and learning generated by small scale disasters

  • CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici

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