Integrated Flood Management (IFM)

Integrated Flood Management (IFM) is a new approach to flood management which derives its principles essentially from the concept of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM). Being a holistic approach, IFM lays emphasis on the interrelationship between socio-economic development and flood management. At the same time it ensures the protection of natural ecosystems for reducing the vulnerability of people who depend for their livelihood on the ecosystem services.

Integrated Flood Management (IFM) serves as the foundation for flood related policy-making and planning. It highlights aspects of sectoral developments that must be factored in planning and policy-making processes if floods are to be managed in a sustainable manner.

This tutorial is structured in five modules:

  • IFM Concept: this module is a general introduction to the conceptual basis of IFM. It provides an overview of the principles and objectives of IFM and explains the need for a new approach to flood management.
  • Legal and Institutional Aspects of IFM: this module provides information about the legal and institutional requirements for flood management on the national and international level. Moreover it offers a methodology which enables experts to test existing legal frameworks for compatibility with the concept of IFM.
  • Social Aspects and Stakeholder Involvement in IFM: this module pursues two goals. First it explains the intricate interrelationship between floods and people including the factors that make people vulnerable to floods. Secondly this module addresses the benefits and methods of engaging stakeholders in the decision making process.
  • Environmental Aspects of IFM: this module emphasizes the importance of environmental considerations in flood management by explaining the roles of ecosystems in hydrological processes that lead to flood formation. It outlines the environmental consequences of structural flood management measures and provides a framework for environmentally sensitive decision making.
  • Economic Aspects of IFM: This module deals with the making of choices. The role of economic analysis in the context of decision making in flood management is outlined. It gives an overview of the traditional methods for cost benefit analysis and briefly describes alternative appraisal methods for flood management projects. 

Each module concludes with a set of questions (virtual trainer) which offers the user the possibility to assess the acquired knowledge.

If not stated otherwise the contents of these modules are drawn from the papers of the Flood Management Policy Series which can be downloaded at the beginning of each module. The Flood Management Policy Series is developed by the Associated Programme on Flood Management (APFM).

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