HANZE (Historical Analysis of Natural HaZards in Europe) database was initiated in 2016 by Dominik Paprotny while working on pan-European flood hazard mapping at Delft University of Technology. The first iteration of the database focused on ‘flood normalization’, i.e. adjusting historical data on impacts of floods (fatalities, persons affected, economic loss) for increase in exposure (demographic and economic growth, land-use change). Currently, HANZE goes a step further into the field of ‘impact attribution’, where all components of risk (hazard, exposure and vulnerability) will be quantified and their relative influence on flood losses since 1950 established. Further activities are taking place to expand the research into other types of natural hazards in Europe.

HANZE-based study in Nature Communications has found that correcting historical losses for exposure growth and gaps in data completely changes trends in flood impacts over the past 150 years in 36 European countries.

HANZE v2 (current)

Research on the new HANZE dataset is ongoing and the datasets will gradually become available via scientific publications, data repositories and this webpage. Currently available are:
Exposure: population, land use, GDP and fixed asset value estimates for Europe at 100 m resolution from 1870 to 2020 (view)
Historical floods with impact data (1870-2020): location and impact data on more than 2500 flood events in Europe from 1870 to 2020 (view)
Historical floods without impact data (1950-2020): supplementary catalogue of 237 floods since 1950 (view)
Modelled potential floods (1950-2020): model reconstruction of almost 15,000 events since 1950 (view)
Flood protection levels (1950-2020): estimated actual protection reliability from riverine and coastal floods by subnational regions (view)
Flood vulnerability (1950-2020): estimated relative loss by impact type and subnational regions (view)

The datasets are described in the following publications:

  • Paprotny D., Mengel M. (2023) Population, land use and economic exposure estimates for Europe at 100 m resolution from 1870 to 2020.
    Scientific Data 10:372 https://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41597-023-02282-0
  • Paprotny D., Terefenko P., Śledziowski J. (2023) An improved database of flood impacts in Europe, 1870–2020: HANZE v2.1.
    Earth System Science Data Discussions. https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2023-321
  • Tilloy A., Paprotny D., Grimaldi S., Gomes G., Bianchi A., Lange S., Beck H., Feyen L. (2024) HERA: a high-resolution pan-European hydrological reanalysis (1950-2020). Earth System Science Data, in review https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2024-41
  • Paprotny D., Rhein B., Vousdoukas M. I., Teferenko P., Dottori F., Śledziowski J., Treu S., Feyen L., Kreibich H., Mengel M. (2024) Merging modelled and reported flood impacts in Europe in a combined flood event catalogue, 1950-2020. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, in review https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-499
  • Paprotny D., 't Hart C. M. P., Morales-Napoles O. (2024) Evolution of flood protection levels and flood vulnerability in Europe since 1950 estimated with vine-copula models. Natural Hazards, in review (https://doi.org/10.21203/rs.3.rs-4213746/v1).

HANZE v1 (original version, 2017)

The legacy dataset with flood impact and exposure data can be accessed at 4TU. Research Data view

The dataset and the analysis of the normalized trends is described in two open-access papers:

  • Paprotny D., Sebastian A., Morales Nápoles O., Jonkman S.N. (2018) Trends in flood losses in Europe over the past 150 years.
    Nature Communications 9:1985 (https://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-04253-1)
  • Paprotny D., Morales Nápoles O., Jonkman S.N. (2018) HANZE: a pan-European database of exposure to natural hazards and damaging historical floods since 1870.
    Earth System Science Data 10:565–581 (https://dx.doi.org/10.5194/essd-10-565-2018)

About the author

Dr. Dominik Paprotny is currently the principal investigator of project "Decomposition of flood losses by environmental and economic drivers”, funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and hosted by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (https://www.pik-potsdam.de/members/dominikp). He has been working on interdisciplinary research in relation to floods since 2014, first as a PhD student at Delft University of Technology and later as a postdoc at GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences, before joining PIK in 2021.

Note on the data and documentation

The datasets are provided for research purposes only. No warranty is given as to their suitability for user applications. No liability is accepted by the authors for any errors or omissions in the data or associated information and/or documentation. Please consult the documentation and associated research papers on the methodology and sources of input data. When using the HANZE data for publications, please cite the appropriate research papers along with citation of the data.