Original Research

Risk factors and risk level assessment: Forty thousand emergencies over the past decade in China

Ning Ma, Yijun Liu
Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies | Vol 12, No 1 | a916 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jamba.v12i1.916 | © 2020 Ning Ma, Yijun Liu | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 13 November 2019 | Published: 09 November 2020

About the author(s)

Ning Ma, Institute of Policy and Management, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China; and, University of Chinese Academy of Science, Beijing, China
Yijun Liu, Institute of Policy and Management, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China; and, University of Chinese Academy of Science, Beijing, China


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Abstract

During a public emergency, which possibly evolves into a major public crisis, it is critical to quickly identify the main risk factors and assess the levels of risk, in order to efficiently manage the risks. In this study, about 40 000 emergencies in China over the past decade are investigated. Then, the five different types of risk factors are identified of these emergencies using the 5W1H methodology, including risk time (When), risk location (Where), risk population (Who), risk psychology (Why) and risk element (What), which lead to a risk matrix that is suitable for China’s national conditions. Based on this risk matrix, combined with expert knowledge, the Borda count and the analytic hierarchy process analysis, risk levels can be precisely assessed, solving ‘how to provide a solution’ (How), which provides decision-making guidance and facilitates prompt risk responses.

Keywords

emergency; risk factor; risk matrix; risk level assessment; China

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