Vulnerability of what?

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Vulnerability can only be described meaningfully if it refers to a specific vulnerable situation, place or system. Depending on the research domain, the focus of analysis and the underlying theoretical framework the term vulnerability refers to sytems, specific functions and sectors of a system or (social) groups which are exposed to or threatened by a certain hazard. The taxonomy of this wiki distinguishes between:

Additionally interactions between systems are considered since often disturbances and stressors affect more than one system or element of the system or they are a priori conceptualized as coupled human-environment systems (Turner II et al. 2003). Thus the ontology asks for interactions within systems (intra-system interaction) and interactions between natural, social and technical system (inter-system interaction).

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