Program Information

(all times in Eastern/ Toronto Time)
(Click on the Speaker's name to download the presentation if available)

November 1

Session 1 - Resilience against meteorological perils and climate change  
Virtual Format – Nov 1st, 12:00 – 14:00hrs

  1. Dr. Francis Zwiers – will set the stage with a quick overview of the contents of IPCC report, what does it have to say for extremes (weather conditions)
  2. Dr. Thian Yew Gan - will continue with the IPCC report and the changes for the cryosphere and policy changes to consider in Canada
  3. Dr. Amir Ali Khan – will speak about flood zones regulation (hydrosphere), policy and infrastructure adapted to climate change
  4. Dr. David Sills – will speak about severe storms (atmosphere), the northern tornadoes project, how data collection fits impact on severe storms, and (if time available) the Canadian severe storms lab
  5. Dr. Farshid Vahedifard – interdependent infrastructure system and methods for resilient structures, example specific towards the resilience of levee and structures 
  6. Q&A Session


Session 2 - Remote sensing and artificial intelligence methods for disaster risk reduction
Virtual Format – Nov 1st, 15:30 – 17:45hrs

Part I: Research and Development

  1. Mrs. Paula Padrino Vilela – Modern Technologies for Disaster Management
  2. Dr. Shayna Skolnik – Virtual World, Real Understanding: Using Immersive Visualization for Understanding Disasters, Climate, and Extreme Weather Impacts
  3. Dr. Silvia Garcia – Intelligent VR-AR for Natural Disasters Management
  4. Dr. Robert Soden – Responsible AI in Disaster Risk Management: A Community Practice Perspective

Part II: Implementations

  1. Prof. Kristy Tiampo – Advanced Flood Extent Detection Algorithms Applied to Sentinel 1A/B Synthetic Aperture Radar Data
  2. Dr. Abhineet Gupta – Using LiDAR Pointcloud Data for Building Elevation & Height Estimation to Develop 3D Models of Cities
  3. Dr. Anirudh Koul – SpaceML Worldview Search: The NoCode Earth & Natural Disaster Dataset Curator from Unlabeled Petabyte Scale Imagery

Q&A after each presentation


November 2

Session 3 - Risk financing for disasters 
Virtual Format – Nov 2nd, 10:30 – 12:30hrs

  1. Dr. Jason Thistlethwaite - will talk about risk governance and risk sharing, touching on international framework and how climate change/flood impact assessments can have major influence
  2. Dr. Mathieu Boudreault - will talk about how catastrophic events can be modeled and their risks can be quantified. The case study will touch on cyclone, flood, and climate change - how the modelling can help cat risk management. A case study may touch on Quebec's flood risk management approaches
  3. Dr. Gero Michel – will speak about insurance and reinsurance risks related to natural hazards
  4. Mr. Grant Kelly - will touch on wildland fire case in California and catastrophic risks in Canada, which could affect the whole P&C industry. How could industry manage such risks?
  5. Dr. John Braun - will touch on wildland fire risks in the context of climate change. The talk may come in un an expected way that seemingly rational approaches for wildland fire risks may not be producing the results that are intended to be. The talk will highlight some complex issues that need to be addressed when it comes to the management of natural disasters which interact.
  6. Q&A Session


Session 4 - Geological Hazards and Risk: Towards policy-making and mitigation
In-Person + Virtual Format – Nov 2nd, 13:30 – 15:30hrs

  1. Dr. Alex Peace – Big picture: big tectonic scale, plate boundary processes, intraplate setting with high-rate seismicity, Canada is active in both coasts  
  2. Dr. Sheri Molnar – Seismic site response (emphasis in geophysics), hazard maps -Vancouver, geotechnical seismic hazards and microzonation (linked to geophysics) 
  3. Dr. Luc Chouinard – Seismic hazard risk, Seismic site response (emphasis in engineering), hazard maps - Montreal, geotechnical seismic hazards and microzonation (linked to engineering)
  4. Dr. Keith Porter – financial aspects, cost benefit analysis and policy recommendations at higher stakeholders.
  5. Discussion and Q&A Session


Session 5 – Students’ Lightning Talks
In-Person + Virtual Format – Nov 2nd, 16:00 – 17:30hrs

Students’ present their work in a 3Minute Thesis style. Option to compete for prizes.
Click here for more information [download PDF]

Soheil Bakhtiari -  Let’s mitigate the domino effects of Multi-Hazards over Critical Infrastructure networks in our communities!!
Kevin Potoczny - The Exposed Population in Natural Disasters
Maryam Shams - Urban Heat mitigation for Current and Future Conditions
Elisa Dong -  Testing Earthquake Aftershock Forecasts
Naser Ahmed - Predicting urban flooding susceptibility of public transit systems using machine learning approaches: A case study of the largest city in Canada
Nafiseh Ghasemian Sorboni - Flood mapping using remote sensing data and a Siamese Network with a Weighted Loss Function
Payam Momeni - The tsunami hazard assessment of Makran Subduction Zone


Closing Words

Social Dinner and Events will be planned accordingly to COVID-19 Provincial restrictions and Western University Code of Conduct.