Calendar Event Schedule

Academic Calendar

Event Scheduled for Jan 25, 2013

Event: CEE Special Seminar: Risk-informed decision making for civil infrastructure exposed to low-probability, high-consequence hazard: the role of risk-aversion -Guest Speaker: Eun Jeong Cha, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Georgia Institute of Technology

Location: Castleman 212

Time: 12:00 pm

Details of Event:

Risk mitigation decisions for civil infrastructure exposed to rare natural and manmade hazards are often impacted by risk aversion, a behavioral phenomenon in which the decision maker’s perception and judgment of risk are systematically distorted, resulting in decisions that might be viewed as excessively conservative when compared to those from a traditional minimum expected cost analysis. Risk aversion is believed to be especially significant if the decision maker is confronted with a low-probability event with catastrophic consequences. Most consequence-based decision models, including current models based on minimum expected lifecycle cost, have supported engineering decisions in many contexts but address the influence of risk perception on those decisions only to a limited degree.

This seminar presents some results of an investigation on how decisions regarding structural safety are affected by the attitudes of the decision-maker toward risk using decision models, such as cumulative prospect theory, that allow risk-averse behaviors to be modeled quantitatively. Perspectives on the characteristics of risk-aversion are first drawn from risk pricing techniques in the insurance industry. These perspectives are then refined for structural engineering applications by investigations of decision problems including seismic retrofit of unreinforced masonry structures in San Francisco, CA and aseismic design of a steel moment frame in Vancouver, BC. An examination of risk attitudes towards competing natural hazards also is introduced by comparing decisions related to wind and seismic effects in areas where both hazards may be significant. These investigations have led to some tentative conclusions regarding the role of risk-aversion in the assurance of structural safety and in code-related decisions and suggest avenues for future study. --

Biographical Sketch

Eun Jeong Cha is a postdoctoral research fellow in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology. She received her Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Structural Engineering from the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology in August 2012 and May 2009, respectively. Her research interests are in the general areas of civil infrastructure risk assessment and risk-informed decision-making, with an emphasis on life-cycle analysis of buildings and other infrastructure, design optimization against multiple hazards, and the role of risk acceptance attitudes in civil engineering decisions. She was honored as an inaugural recipient of the Student Recognition Award by the Civil Engineering Risk and Reliability Association (CERRA) at the 11th International Conference on Applications of Statistics and Probability in Civil Engineering (ICASP 11) held in Zurich, Switzerland in August, 2011. She also was named a recipient of the Probabilistic Methods Committee Student Paper Award at the 2012 Joint Conference of the American Society of Civil Engineers Engineering Mechanics Institute and the 11th Specialty Conference on Probabilistic Mechanics and Structural Reliability (EMI/PMC 2012) held in Notre Dame, Indiana on June 17 – 20, 2012.

Target Audience: Open to All

Sponsored By: Civil and Environmental Engineering

Pamphlet/Flyer: View file here

Back to previous page