Over the last 30 years, the world has lost an estimated $3.8 trillion to disasters caused by natural hazards.
Disasters mainly affect the poor, threatening to roll back gains in economic and social well-being worldwide, and erasing decades of development progress overnight. The increasing stresses on the society posed by uncontrolled socio-economic development and by climate change erode its resilience to shocks like catastrophic events.

To face this situation a combination of action needs to be put in place that encompasses risk reduction/mitigation, risk retention and risk transfer.

Risk transfer mechanisms such as insurances are an important contribution to this risk management activity as they enable the different risk management component to be put inbackground: #00fbd5; place especially in countries with a limited risk retention capacity. That is the case of the study area considered in e-Drift. South-East and South Asia countries with middle-low incomes suffer regular losses due to weather related events, principally floods due to monsoons and hurricane systems.

The implementation of Disaster Risk Management and the rapid response financing in the wake of a natural disaster, requires a deep knowledge of the environmental situation, the potential affected areas, infrastructure and people. EO based services deliver essential information to evaluate the status of preparedness, to define measures to enhance the disaster prevention or about situation analysis of an event for an efficient emergency response.

The Project

The Project: e-Drift (Disaster RIsk Financing and Transfer) project aims to create a strong network between providers of value-added services utilizing EO data, In-Sector service providers for the insurance market and reinsurance companies with the final purpose to create new or improved products and solutions for the Insurance sector. The e-Drift project consortium includes leading companies in the EO value adding, and leading actors in the insurance market.

  • CIMA Research Foundation is the lead company and responsible of the user interface design of the Virtual Platform enabling the access to the value added services: the main deliverable of the project.

  • FadeOut Software, responsible of the Virtual Platform through the development of the WASDI system.

  • LIST, responsible of the flood area detection algorithms.

  • DLR, responsible of the population characterization layers.

  • Deltares responsible for the integration of EO data into hydrologic/hydraulic model results.

  • Swiss Re major reinsurance company and in sector provider.

  • RMS in sector provider and world leading company in cat modelling for insurance market.

  • The World Bank will be guiding the user needs assessment for institutional clients that would like to manage their sovereign risk. This development is directly connected with a client platform providing parametric insurance against flood in South East Asia developed with the support of the World Bank.
    The SEA DRIF platform will integrate services from eDrift into its web client to trigger insurance payments in case of flooding in Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar.



The Virtual Platform enables an easy and timely access to various services and products guaranteeing high computing capability and direct access to the EO datasets of the Sentinel constellation. Services will cover several key areas of interest of the insurance market and of Countries that would like to transfer their sovereign risk.
The e-Drift Virtual Platform will be released as a PAAS, so that can be embedded in the IT systems of the In-Sector Providers, and as a SAAS, so that can be used by In-Sector Providers by a unique and KISS End User Interface.

The virtual platform is heavily based on already existent platforms and SW that have been developed and tested throughout the years the key ones being: WASDI providing middleware and backend services, RASOR providing libraries for the impact computations, ESA Urban TEP and ESA GPOD providing computing services and products.

Parametric Insurance

Event Monitoring

Rapid Impact Evaluation

Risk Assessment

Exposure Layer Validation