2001 – On the Art of Event Tree Modelling for Portfolio Risk Analyses

P.I. Hill, D.S. Bowles, R.J. Nathan, R. Herweynen

With the growing emphasis on a risk-based approach to dam safety management, event tree models are increasingly being used as an analysis tool. The simple structure of event trees belies some of the more complex issues associated with their application to dam safety risk analysis. This paper outlines some of the basic principles of event tree analysis and then demonstrates how inappropriate construction of event trees, and particularly oversimplification, can result in a bias in the estimated risk and produce misleading results when used to assess the dam against various risk criteria. Issues considered include the partitioning of the loading event and the impact of conservative assumptions such as assuming the reservoir is initially at full supply level.

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