On the estimation of landslide intensity, hazard and density via data-driven models

Mariano Di Napoli, Hakan Tanyas, Daniela Castro-Camilo, Domenico Calcaterra, Andrea Cevasco, Diego Di Martire, Giacomo Pepe, Pierluigi Brandolini, Luigi Lombardo*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Maps that attempt to predict landslide occurrences have essentially stayed the same since 1972. In fact, most of the geo-scientific efforts have been dedicated to improve the landslide prediction ability with models that have largely increased their complexity but still have addressed the same binary classification task. In other words, even though the tools have certainly changed and improved in 50 years, the geomorphological community addressed and still mostly addresses landslide prediction via data-driven solutions by estimating whether a given slope is potentially stable or unstable. This concept corresponds to the landslide susceptibility, a paradigm that neglects how many landslides may trigger within a given slope, how large these landslides may be and what proportion of the given slope they may disrupt. The landslide intensity concept summarized how threatening a landslide or a population of landslide in a study area may be. Recently, landslide intensity has been spatially modeled as a function of how many landslides may occur per mapping unit, something, which has later been shown to closely correlate to the planimetric extent of landslides per mapping unit. In this work, we take this observation a step further, as we use the relation between landslide count and planimetric extent to generate maps that predict the aggregated size of landslides per slope, and the proportion of the slope they may affect. Our findings suggest that it may be time for the geoscientific community as a whole, to expand the research efforts beyond the use of susceptibility assessment, in favor of more informative analytical schemes. In fact, our results show that landslide susceptibility can be also reliably estimated (AUC of 0.92 and 0.91 for the goodness-of-fit and prediction skill, respectively) as part of a Log-Gaussian Cox Process model, from which the intensity expressed as count per unit (Pearson correlation coefficient of 0.91 and 0.90 for the goodness-of-fit and prediction skill, respectively) can also be derived and then converted into how large a landslide or several coalescing ones may become, once they trigger and propagate downhill. This chain of landslide intensity, hazard and density may lead to substantially improve decision-making processes related to landslide risk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1513-1530
Number of pages18
JournalNatural hazards
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Integrated nested laplace approximation
  • Landslide density
  • Landslide hazard
  • Landslide intensity
  • Landslide susceptibility
  • UT-Hybrid-D


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