How to Define Priorities in Coastal Vulnerability Assessment
Awareness of coastal landscapes vulnerability to both natural and man-made hazards induce to monitor their evolution, adaptation, resilience and to develop appropriate defence strategies. The necessity to transform the monitoring results into useful information is the motivation of the present paper. Usually, to this scope, a coastal vulnerability index is deduced, by assigning ranking values to the different parameters governing the coastal processes. The principal limitation of this procedure
... n of this procedure is the individual discretion used in ranking. Moreover, physical parameters are generally considered, omitting socio-economic factors. The aim of the present study is to complement a geographical information system (GIS) with an analytical hierarchical process (AHP), thus allowing an objective prioritization of the key parameters. Furthermore, in the present case, socio-economic parameters have been added to physical ones. Employing them jointly, an integrated coastal vulnerability index (ICVI) has been estimated and its effectiveness has been investigated. To show how it works, the proposed method has been applied to a portion of the Adriatic coastline, along the Apulian region in southern Italy. It has permitted to identify and prioritize the most vulnerable areas, revealing its efficacy as a potential tool to support coastal planning and management.