Integrated Vulnerability Assessment Framework for Atoll Islands

This resource material is designed as a generic guide for planning, implementing and reporting an integrated
vulnerability assessment (IVA) that targets atoll communities in the Pacific Islands region. It is based on a sustainable
livelihoods-based approach that combines the assessment of vulnerability to both climate change and disasters. An
analysis of previous vulnerability assessment approaches in the Pacific Islands region suggests the importance of
merging vulnerability and risk-based assessments as depicted in Figure 1 (Gero et al. 2011). The fifth assessment
report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) defines vulnerability as the ‘propensity or
predisposition to be adversely affected’, which includes ‘sensitivity or susceptibility to harm and lack of capacity to
cope and adapt (IPCC 2007). Similarly, vulnerability is defined by the United Nations International Strategy for
Disaster Reduction (UNISDR 2011) as the ‘characteristics and circumstances of a community, system or asset that
make it susceptible to the damaging effects of a hazard’.

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