Isabelle RUIN

Research scientist at CNRS

Institute for Geosciences and Environmental research (IGE) - Grenoble (FR)


  1. a)Social dynamics during the 2002 flash flood event in the Gard (Ruin, 2007)

  2. b)Space-Time scales of human vulnerability to flash flood in the 2002 event in the Gard (Ruin et al., 2008)


As a human geographer and researcher of the HMCIS team at IGE, I am standing at the interface of two ways of thinking, two very different scientific communities with the goal of mobilizing simultaneously geophysical sciences to describe the hazard and social sciences to understand the vulnerability and adaptive capacity, specifically social dynamics associated with short-fuse weather events.

Together with hydro-meteorologists and social scientists, I develop new concepts and methods to merge social and physical concerns through space-time scales considerations.

This novel approach to social-behavioral aspects of flash flooding has the potential to provide renewed knowledge about warning responses and a better understanding of the limits of a warning system’s ability to trigger particular behaviors.

This spatio-temporal approach is still in its infancy and needs to be challenged and strengthened by further exploration. In this respect my current work includes :

  1. -Developing specific data collection methods such as socio-hydro-meteorological post-event field investigations,

  2. -Experimenting Space-Time framework for integrative studies,

- Organizing integrative and interdisciplinary efforts through slow science rendez-vous and international summer school.

                                            Picture’s captions

  1. 1.Colorado road signs; 2. Storm over Monument valley; 3. Cabo Verde painted wall; 4. Storm over Asbyrgi, Iceland

Research topic

TEAM           HydroMeteorology, Climate and Interactions with Societies (HMCIS)

LOCATION         Office C131 - Bat. OSUG-B

                           Domaine Universitaire de Saint Martin d’Hères

CONTACT         +33 (0)4 56 52 09 46 -

ADDRESS        UGA, CS 40 700, 38058 Grenoble cedex 9 - FRANCE