The potential for the use of model fusion techniques in building and developing catastrophe models

Global economic losses related to natural hazards are large and increasing, peaking at US$380 billion in 2011 driven by earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand and flooding in Thailand. Catastrophe models are stochastic event-set based computer models, first created 25 years ago, that are now vital to risk assessment within the insurance and reinsurance industry. They estimate likely losses from extreme events, whether natural or man-made. Most catastrophe models limit the level of user interaction, stereotyped as ‘black boxes’. In this paper we investigate how model fusion techniques could be used to develop ‘plug and play’ catastrophe models and discuss the impact of open access modelling on the insurance industry and other stakeholders (e.g. local government).