Our People

Holger Maier
Project Leader


Holger Maier is Professor of Integrated Water Systems Engineering and Deputy Head of the School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering at the University of Adelaide. Prior to joining the University in 1999, he worked as a consultant in the private and public sectors in South Australia, as a senior civil engineer with the Western Samoa Water Authority and as a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of British Columbia. 

Holger's research is focussed on developing improved techniques for the sustainable management of water resources and infrastructure in an uncertain environment and includes elements of modelling, optimisation and multi criteria and uncertainty analysis. He has co-authored more than 10 book chapters and in excess of 100 refereed papers. He has received a number of national and international awards for his teaching and research.

Project leadership

What if an earthquake hit central Adelaide? A major flood on the Yarra River through Melbourne? A bushfire on the slopes of Mount Wellington over Hobart?

‘What if?’ scenario modelling through this project is helping government, planning authorities and emergency service agencies think through the costs and consequences of various options on preparing for major disasters on their infrastructure and natural environments and how these might change into the future.

The research is based on the premise that to reduce both the risk and cost of natural disasters, an integrated approach is needed to consider multiple hazards and a range of mitigation options.

Posters credited

Optimising mitigation measures policy and planning decision support

We are developing a decision support system for the assessment of policy and planning investment options for optimal natural hazard mitigation.

Improved decision support systems: Enhanced spatially distributed model calibration

Risk mitigation requires understanding the impact of land use Planning and Management on hazard exposure and vulnerability. 

Handling uncertainty in optimal decision-making for natural hazard mitigation planning

Modelling, simulation and decision support systems are critical for decision making for natural disaster mitigation.

Understanding How Dynamic Exposure Affects Risk by Using a Land Use Model

Building on the evaluation of risk: incorporating the evolution of hazard risk over time with dynamic modelling of exposure.

Key Topics:
Including Land Value in Hazard Mitigation Planning

Land use policies hold the greatest long-term risk reduction potential but are under-utilised.

Key Topics:
Hedwig van Delden Conference Poster 2016

We have developed a decision support system with potential to transform planning for risk reduction in Australia.

Charles Newland Conference Poster 2016

Developing hazard mitigation strategies through more efficient dynamic assessment of exposure by making the calibration of land use models automatic.

Graeme Riddell Conference Poster 2016

Risk is a complex combination of hazards, exposure and vulnerability.

Tomorrow’s disasters - foresight principles, risk assessment and treatment

When plans have an over-reliance on what happened in the past, the risk is that one misses the potential for a future that is different, unseen, and unimaginable. Hindsight, learning the lessons of the past, is necessary, but planning should be driven also by imagination and foresight. Are we planning for the next fire? Or are we planning for the next 'firestorm'? What do we think that will look like? In this setting, the greatest failure may well be the failure to imagine.


All the resources from our 2016 conference

Research program in detail

Where, why and how are Australians dying in floods?

2015-2016 year in review

Bushfire planning with kids ebook