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Insuring Large-Scale Floods in the Netherlands

Listed author(s):
  • Ruben Jongejan


    (Hydraulic Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Stevinweg 1, 2628CN Delft, P.O.Box 5048, 2600GA The Netherlands.)

  • Pauline Barrieu


    (Department of Statistics, London School of Economics, Houghton Street, London, WC2A 2AE United Kingdom.)

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    Without its primary flood defenses, a large part of the Netherlands would be swallowed by rivers and the sea. Floods caused by the failure of primary flood defenses are high-impact, low-probability events that are notoriously difficult to insure. Private insurance was long considered unfeasible but the Dutch government is currently studying ways to introduce a public–private insurance program. This paper offers a discussion of variables that should be taken into account in the choice for an arrangement for the financing of large-scale floods in the Netherlands. Because flood risk is highly concentrated and potential losses could be severe, a strong government role seems inevitable. But this would not necessarily be inappropriate as this could reduce the risk of underinvestment in flood protection. The Geneva Papers (2008) 33, 250–268. doi:10.1057/gpp.2008.10

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    Article provided by Palgrave Macmillan & The Geneva Association in its journal The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance Issues and Practice.

    Volume (Year): 33 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 2 (April)
    Pages: 250-268

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    Handle: RePEc:pal:gpprii:v:33:y:2008:i:2:p:250-268
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