Resilience policy for flood risk transferred from private to public dams: insurance and accounting issues

Joanne Tingey-Holyoak, John D. Pisaniello, Martina Linnenluecke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite issues with inadequate private water storage and risk management in catchments above large public dams, no comprehensive resilience policy framework has been developed to integrate the actions of both public and private actors. The research seeks to investigate what elements of resilience policy should be adopted for the management of private and public catchment dams to prevent potential cumulative flood risks to communities under conditions of more frequent and/or severe extreme weather events due to climate change. This investigation is undertaken through a review of prior research and a case study of the Wivenhoe Dam catchment in Queensland, Australia. Results find that while recent flooding focused attention on the role of the large public Wivenhoe Dam in preventing the flood impact on Brisbane, less attention of was paid to smaller private dams upstream in the catchment and the cumulative failure risk to Wivenhoe and other large public dams. The paper presents a preliminary development of generalisable guidelines for robust and rapid resilience policy. Such policy would facilitate a range of approaches/options to cost sharing amongst stakeholders including insurance and technological tools to mitigate the risks posed by cumulative private dam failures in catchments of large public dams.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-250
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of the Asia Pacific Centre for Environmental Accountability
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • resilience policy
  • private dam failure
  • insurance
  • flood risk transfer
  • Wivenhoe dam


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