University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU) - Research portal

Logo BOKU Resarch Portal

Integrated Flood Risk Management in Mountain Areas: Assessing Sectoral Interdependencies, Conflicts and Options for Policy Coordination

Project Leader
Seher Walter, Project Leader
Earth System Sciences (ESS)
Type of Research
Basic Research
Project partners
Bundesanstalt für Agrarwirtschaft und Bergbauernfragen, Wien, Austria.
Contact person: Klaus Wagner;
Function of the Project Partner: Partner
Hohensinner Severin, Sub Projectleader
Nordbeck Ralf, Sub Projectleader
Herrnegger Mathew, Sub Projectleader
Löschner Lukas, Project Staff (bis 31.12.2021)
Junger Lena, Project Staff
BOKU Research Units
Institute of Forest, Environmental and Natural Resource Policy
Institute of Hydrobiology and Aquatic Ecosystem Management (IHG)
Institute of Hydrology and Watermanagement
Institute of Spatial Planning, Environmental Planning and Land Rearrangement (IRUB)
POCO-FLOOD - Reconstruction of historical land cover and river morphology (POCO-FLOOD WP2)
Integrated Flood Risk Management in Mountain Areas: Assessing Sectoral Interdependencies, Conflicts and Options for Policy Coordination (POCO-FLOOD)
Funded by
Austrian Academy of Sciences , Dr. Ignaz- Seipel Platz, 1010 Wien, Austria
The project PoCo-FLOOD investigates the issue of policy coordination, which arises from the on-going paradigmatic shift in flood policies from flood defense to integrated flood risk management (IFRM). Specifically, the project explores interdependencies, conflicts and options for policy coordination between the sectors flood protection, hydropower (energy), agriculture and spatial planning. As these sectors play a fundamental role concerning both flood hazard prevention and flood risk mitigation in mountain areas, PoCo-FLOOD investigates the challenges and opportunities of policy coordination for these particular fields of interaction in three in-depth case studies. The first case, (“Flood Retention in the Headwaters”) focuses on hydropower dams in alpine catchments and the possibilities/limitations of coordinated policies to attenuate peak floods. The second case (“Flood Storage on Agricultural Land”) focuses on the growing need to provide agricultural areas for temporary flood storage and the possibilities/limitations of coordinated policies to provide upstream flood retention services for downstream beneficiaries. The third case (“Flood Protection and Land Development”) analyses the reciprocal relation between flood protection schemes and spatial planning policies and the possibilities/limitations of coordinated policies to mitigate the increase in damage potential in flood-protected areas.
Through the in-depth analysis of the three fields of interaction PoCo-FLOOD pursues the following objectives: (i) to improve the understanding of the sectoral interrelations, which arise from the shift towards IFRM; (ii) to broaden the knowledge and evidence base concerning the limitations and the conflicts of interest of enhancing policy coherence in IFRM, and (iii) to co-develop together with stakeholders and policy representatives options for coordinated flood policies. The project addresses these objectives through a combined research approach based on interdisciplinary research and stakeholder engagement (transdisciplinarity). The research team brings together five scientific disciplines of strong relevance for the proposed research topic (spatial planning and land rearrangement, hydrology and water management, agriculture, river morphology, and political science). Through a series of stakeholder workshops the project combines knowledge from various user domains with the aim of supporting policy-making and addresses the growing need for better integration of science and decision-making.
Hydrology; Risk research; River engineering; Hydraulic engineering; Agricultural economics; Policy analysis; Cultural landscape research; Landscape planning; Regional planning; Spatial research; Spatial structure;
Alpine spatial planning; Catchment based flood management; Historical fluvial morphology; Flood risk management; Policy coordination;

Seher, W., Grüneis, H., Niedermayr, J., Schroll, K., Wagner, K., Hohensinner, S., Herrnegger, M., Stecher, G., Lebiedzinski, K., Junger, L., Löschner, L., Nordbeck, R. (2023): Integriertes Hochwasserrisikomanagement in Berggebieten: sektorale Interdependenzen, Konflikte und Möglichkeiten der Politikkoordination (PoCo-FLOOD).

In: Elster, D. (Hrsg.), Helfricht, K. (Hrsg.), Seher, W. (Hrsg.), Wasser in Gebirgsräumen – Disaster Risk Management: Transdisziplinäre Studien aus Österreich. – Abhandlungen der GeoSphere Austria 77, 133-191, Wien; ISBN 978-3-903252-15-8 FullText

Elster, D. (Hrsg.), Helfricht, K. (Hrsg.), Seher, W. (Hrsg.) (2023): Wasser in Gebirgsräumen – Disaster Risk Management: Transdisziplinäre Studien aus Österreich. – Abhandlungen der GeoSphere Austria.

77, 192, Wien; ISBN: 978-3-903252-15-8 FullText

* Seher, W; Neuhold, C (2022): Koordination von Raumplanung und Wasserbau als wesentlicher Bestandteil des Hochwasserrisikomanagements.

Österreichische Wasser- und Abfallwirtschaft, 74, 144-153; ISSN 0945-358X FullText FullText_BOKU

Junger, L; Seher, W; (2021): Hochwasserexposition von alpinen Siedlungsgebieten im historischen Vergleich. [Poster]
[13. Dresdner Flächennutzungssymposium, Dresden, Germany, 28.06.2021 - 29.06.2021]

In: Das Leibniz-Institut für ökologische Raumentwicklung, Abstract-Band FullText

** Thaler, T; Nordbeck, R; Loschner, L; Seher, W Cooperation in flood risk management: understanding the role of strategic planning in two Austrian policy instruments.

ENVIRON SCI POLICY. 2020; 114: 170-177. WoS FullText FullText_BOKU

Löschner, L; Herrnegger, M; Hohensinner, S; Niedermayr, J; Nordbeck, R; Seher, W; Wagner, K; Wesemann, J (2019): Flood risk management in mountain regions: a policy coordination perspective.
[European Geosciences Union EGU General Assembly 2019, Vienna, Austria, 07.04.2019 - 12.04.2019]

In: European Geosciences Union, Geophysical Research Abstracts, Vol. 21, EGU2019-7611 FullText


Herrnegger, M; Stecher, G (2022): Einfluss von Speicherkraftwerken auf Hochwasser in Österreich.

ÖWAV - Seminar "Koordination im Hochwasserrisikomanagement - Wasserkraft, Landwirtschaft, Raumplanung", 07.12.2022, Salzburg, Austria

Seher, W. (2022): Raumplanung und Naturgefahrenrisikomanagement.

Alpine Raumordnung: Raumplanung unter vielschichtigen Limitationen, 27.09.2022, Salzburg

Seher, W., Junger, L. (2022): Tracing justice in flood risk management – the case of developing residual risk zones.

Ecological, Social and Spatial Justice, 11th International and Interdisciplinary Symposium of the European Academy of Land Use and Development , 01.09.2022 - 03.09.2022, Frankfurt

Junger, L; Seher, W; (2021): Growing flood risk in areas with lower flood hazard – spatial planning options to address this challenge .

REAL CORP 2021, SEPT 7-10, 2021, Vienna, Austria

© BOKU Wien Imprint