Characterization and quantification of path dependency in landslide susceptibility

Gepubliceerd op
9 mei 2017

An article of Jalal Samia, Arnaud Temme, Arnold Bregt, Jakob Wallinga, Fausto Guzzetti, Francesca Ardizzone and Mauro Rossi: Characterization and quantification of path dependency in landslide susceptibility, has been published in Geomorphology, Volume 292, 1 September 2017, Pages 16–24.


Landslides cause major environmental damage, economic losses and casualties. Although susceptibility to landsliding is usually considered an exclusively location-specific phenomenon, indications exist that landslide history co-determines susceptibility to future landslides. In this contribution, we quantified the role of landslide path dependency (the effect of landslides on landslides) using a multi-temporal landslide inventory from Italy. The fraction of landslides following earlier landslides in the same location exhibited an exponential decay, with susceptibility increasing 15-fold right after an initial landslide, and returning to pre-landslide values after about 25 years. We investigated the role of the geometry and location of a previous landslide for the occurrence of follow-up landslides. Larger landslides are more likely to cause follow-up landslides. Also landslide shape, topographic wetness index, the vertical distance to the nearest channel network, the absolute profile curvature and relative slope position of an earlier landslide, however, are important in predicting whether a follow-up landslide occurs. Combined in a binary logistic model, these attributes correctly predict 60% of times whether a landslide will be followed-up. These findings open the way for time-variant mapping of susceptibility to landslides, by including the effect of the spatio-temporal history of landsliding on susceptibility.

Time-variant susceptibility; Path dependency; Follow-up landslides; Multi-temporal landslide inventory; Landslide geometry