Neil Adger receiving his award from Tom Bolt, Lloyd’s Performance Management Director.

Prize in Science of Risk competition

Research on flood risk and how political systems adjust to it has been recognised by the insurance industry. Neil Adger, Professor in Geography, has been awarded the runner-up prize in the Lloyd’s Science of Risk Prize 2013 competition in the category of Geopolitical and Societal Risk. He was invited to present a lecture at the annual ceremony at Lloyd’s on Thursday 28 November 2013.

The prize was awarded to Neil’s study published in Nature Climate Change earlier this year which used the natural experiment of the November 2009 floods in the UK and Ireland to examine the role of social contracts in adjusting to risks. They examined the demand for policy change and perceptions of victims of floods.  The paper showed that adaptation to climate change is likely to occur in reaction to major events, and that the performance of governments in terms of fairness of response shapes how much individuals are willing to take responsibility for flood risks themselves.

Professor Neil Adger explains: “I am delighted that this research was recognised in the Lloyd’s Science of Risk competition. The insurance industry plays a vital role in both understanding and creating the environment for adaptation to climate change. Without such engagement, climate change is likely to be more costly, more messy, and more painful for many.”

The judging panel comprised experts from academia and insurance, who felt Prof Adger’s submission had high relevance for the industry and for environmental regulation.  He was invited to give a lecture on his research to an assembled audience of academics, Research Councils and representatives from the insurance industry. 

Link to paper

Date: 2 December 2013

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